Russell tabs title at Country Club of Hilton Head
McDowell, Ohara capture first victories
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) held its second Event of the Southeast this weekend. Hosted at the Country Club of Hilton Head, the Island Challenge had both National Rankings and IJGT Merit points up for grabs. Despite a weekend of trying conditions, junior golfers played with success. The participating golfers range in age from 13-19 were in pursuit of an invite to IJGT’s Bridgestone Tournament of Champions to be played at Grand Cypress Resort on May 24-26, 2014.
In the Boys 15-19 Division, Nicholas Russell of Hilton Head Island, S.C., came in first in a tight race to the finish. Going into round two, Russell led by three strokes until Davis Kiger of Harrisburg, N.C., cut the lead to two on hole No. 14. Despite the narrow margin, Russell answered back with four consecutive pars to end the second round three strokes ahead. Russell’s strong start on the front nine was the key factor to maintaining the lead, adding cushion for two late double-bogeys.
When asked about his victory, Russell said, “I feel so special, I’ve been playing so many of these Events and it’s my first win in the older [Boys 15-19] Division.”
The winner of the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award went to both Russell and Kiger who both finished round two with a score of 78. The Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award is awarded to the player that shoots the lowest score during the final round.
Second place went to Kiger who finished with an 80-78 – 158 overall score. Rounding out the top three was Hao Yang Lin of Taichung, Taiwan, finishing with a score of 83-83 – 165 overall.
In the Boys 14 & Under Division, Chandler McDowell of Springbrook, Canada, made a stand-out first impression as he took an authoritative lead during round one and continued to lead the entire tournament. Finishing 34 strokes ahead of his competition, McDowell made his first IJGT appearance successful with a first-place finish. Leading round one with a score of 76, a 21-stroke lead over Thomas Delaney of Kingwood, Texas, McDowell strengthened his lead with a round two score of 80.
In discussing what worked well for him, he stated, “I was hitting my driver really well, making a lot of putts and I made a lot of good iron shots.”
Delaney finished second, shooting a 97-93 – 190 overall score. Aaron Elmore of Rincon, Ga., came in third place posting a 101-99 – 200 overall score.
The Girls Division also had a first-time winner finishing with a significant margin. Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award winner, Milleina Ohara of Meguro-Ku, Japan, led both rounds. Her second round featured three birdies in four holes on the front nine, which added to her lead. Runner up Jasmine Chee of Hong Kong, China, looked to rally in round one as she made par on 10 of 18 holes, but struggled to close the gap when her second round included five double-bogeys.
With the weather a factor in this weekend’s play, Ohara said, “…it was pretty cold and windy so my shots were sometimes going left and going right but I still did pretty well.”
Chee came in second shooting an 85-91 – 177 overall score while Maggie Ashmore of Kingston, Ga., rounded out the division in third with a score of 86-91 – 177 overall.
The IJGT Southeast tour will continue next weekend with the Carolina Classic at Colleton River Plantation in Bluffton, S.C. The Dye Course at Colleton River is the host of the 2015 U.S. Junior Amateur. To sign up for this Event, or others, visit IJGT.com or call (843) 785-2444.
About the IJGT
The IJGT provides exceptional junior golfers with the opportunity to develop and showcase their competitive skills while setting high standards to preserve the traditions and integrity of the game. As a tour that operates primarily throughout the academic year, the IJGT hosts approximately 60 tournaments annually. In addition, the IJGT hosts three international events. Each event provides multi-day competition for junior golfers of all skill levels ages 9-19. Players representing 45 states and 43 countries around the world regularly compete in events at venues such as TPC Sawgrass, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, Kiawah Island Resort, and Harbour Town Golf Links. Official partners of the IJGT include Bridgestone Golf, Bagboy, CHAMP Spikes, Clazic Belts, AB Golf Designs, The First Tee, Golfweek, morodZ, PURE Grips, and the International Junior Golf Academy.
To obtain more information about the IJGT, please visit www.IJGT.com or call (800) 792-9143.
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – Final-round results of the IJGT Island Challenge at Country Club of Hilton Head conducted by the International Junior Golf Tour completed January 19, 2014. Boys 15-19 Division: Gold Tees – 6,750 yards, Par 72 (74.4/141) Boys 14 & Under Division: Blue Tees – 6,043 yards, Par 72 (70.5/133) Girls Division: White Tees – 5,822 yards, Par 72 (73.8/130)
Weather: Saturday: Sunny with temperatures in the low 40’s with 20-25 mph winds
Sunday: Sunny with temperatures in the low 50’s with 15-20 mph winds
International Junior Golf Tour
Island Challenge at Country Club of Hilton Head
Hilton Head Island, S.C.
January 18-19, 2014
Boys 15-19 Division (Gold Tees), 6,750 yards, Par 72
1. Nicholas Russell, Hilton Head Island, SC, *77-78–155
2. Davis Kiger, Harrisburg, NC, *80-78–158
3. Hao Yang Lin, Taichung, Taiwan, *83-82–165
4. Hazwan Rahman, Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, *84-84–168
5. Jack Fleming, Falkirk, Scotland, *81-91–172
5. Lee Hammerschmidt, Armonk, NY, *86-86–172
5. Brent Rodgers, Cranberry Township, PA, *90-82–172
8. Yong Sherng Hui, Taman Dagang, Malaysia, *84-89–173
8. Sam Jones, Hinsdale, IL, *86-87–173
10. John McCabe, Sewickley, PA, *91-83–174
11. Jake Kessel, Woodcliff Lake, NJ, *88-89–177
12. Todd Glickfield ll, Marion, IN, *92-86–178
13. Brett Inserra, Upper Saddle River, NJ, *97-83–180
14. Tyler Pidduck, Thousand Oaks, CA, *97-85–182
14. Brock Erwin, Muldrow, OK, *88-94–182
16. Cameron Hsieh, New York, NY, *97-92–189
17. Jerry Sung, Hong Kong, China, *107-107–214
18. J.P. Beall, Pittsburgh, PA, *108-111–219
DID NOT FINISH
Alessandro Vedovi, Paris, France, *JWD
Brian Baker, Pittsburgh, PA, *84-JWD
Guodong Ji, Quing Dao, China, *91-JWD
Boys 14 & Under Division (Blue Tees), 6,043 yards, Par 72
1. Chandler McDowell, Springbrook, Canada, *76-80–156
2. Thomas Delaney, Kingwood, TX, *97-93–190
3. Aaron Elmore, Rincon, GA, *101-99–200
4. Ronak Bhagia, Charlotte, NC, *120-110–230
Girls Division (White Tees), 5,822 yards, Par 72
1. Milleina Ohara, Meguro-Ku, Japan, *80-79–159
2. Jasmine Chee, Hong Kong, China, *85-91–176
3. Maggie Ashmore, Kingston, GA, *86-91–177