Whelan's First Win, Newell Wins Again
This weekend, the Florida Junior Tour took it's talent to Parrish, FL, where the best juniors in the state accepted the challenge of River Wilderness Golf & Country Club. The full field of 84 golfers saw sunny skies and light winds. It was a perfect weekend for golf.
The girl's played from just shy of 6,000 yards and saw two players in the red after round 1. Anna Newell took the clubhouse lead after day one with an impressive 2 under par 70. Emmy Martin stood alone in second place after her smooth 71. Morgan Baxendale and Mary Janiga finished in a tie for third after rounds of 74.
The final round saw much of the same for Newell. She would go out in 38, but close her round with a purpose. Her back nine (holes 1-9) consisted of birdies on 1, 4, 7, and 8. She parred the other 5 holes on that side, which matched her first round score of 70. She finished the thirty-six hole event with a 4 under par 140. She cruised to a 6 shot victory. An impressive final round by Courtney Zeng proved to be the only round 2 red number besides Newell's 70. Zeng shot 75-71--146 for a solo second place finish. Mary Janiga, Emmy Martin, and Latanna Stone all finished at 148 and in a tie for third.
Newell's six shot victory was her 6th win on the Florida Junior Tour. In twenty Florida Junior Tour events, Anna Newell has never finished outside of the top 10. She clearly has a bright future ahead of her.
When the boys' stepped off of the practice facilities and on to the first tee, they saw 6,800 yards of green grass ahead of them. Round 1 saw more than a handful of players finish with rounds under par. Cole Johnson led the way with the tournament low round of 68. Daniel Whelan and Zong Fan Li sat two shots behind impressive rounds of 2 under par 70. Nicolo Fernandez, Philip Knowles, Mark Nauert, and Danny Walker also finished with a red number after they all posted a 71.
Cole Johnson's could not duplicate his first round performance which gave hope to the golfers that trailed him. It was Daniel Whelan who took advantage and held off the rest of the field for a two shot victory. With birdies on hole 11and 13, then pars the rest of the way in, Whelan posted two sub-par rounds (70-71--141). Mark Nauert stayed consistent and his scores of 71-72-143 was good enough for a second place finish. This was Nauert's best finish in a Florida Junior Tour Event. FJT veteran Ramsey Touchberry fired Sunday's low round of 70 which gave him a tournament total of 145 and the third place trophy.
This was Daniel Whelan's first Florida Junior Tour victory. He is looking forward to taking on Quail Ridge next weekend, then he'll be heading to Innisbrook for the 54 hole FJT Major on Memorial Day Weekend.
A very Happy Mother's Day to all the Mom's who took the time out of their day to watch their children compete. Thanks again for your continued support of the FJT and the FSGA.