Valdes & Staples Prevail at Riomar
Riomar Country Club challenged the Florida Junior Tour (13-15) division, forcing the players to focus on their shot making skills. Despite Riomar Country Club testing the players’ games, it provided beautiful scenery with seven holes located on the ocean. No other course in Florida has that many golf holes on the water. Due to environmental guidelines, no new courses will ever be built as close to the ocean again!
Round one started at 12:00 PM but due to inclement weather, play was delayed at 3:26 PM and did not resume until two and a half hours later. Half the field, including the leaders, were able to finish their first round on Saturday. Fred Biondi, two-time Florida Junior Tour winner and current Boys’ Junior Champion from Port Saint Lucie, led after the first round with an even-par, 70. Close behind Biondi, stood Marc Kaneko-Fujii and Joshua Braverman at one over-par, 71. Four players were tied for third, two strokes back, with a 72. In the girls’ division, Victoria Hwang, of Orlando, posted a three over-par, 73, to finish round one in solo first place. Chloe Schiavone and Emily Staples are on Hwang’s heals, just one shot back, with a pair of 74’s. Madyson Moy stands in third heading into the final round after a first round 75.
On Sunday, those that did not finish their first round arrived to the course early to complete round one and continue on to play their final round. In the boys’ division, Brendan Valdes, of Orlando, posted the only red number to come from behind and capture first place. Brendan went 35-32 in his final round, making birdies on holes three, four, 12, 14, and 16, en route to a 67. Biondi finished second with a day two round of 71 and a one over-par tournament total (141). Alan Klenor, of Longboat Key, finished in third place with rounds of 73-70 for a 143 tournament total. Emily Staples played consistent golf over the past two days, posting back-to-back 74’s, to capture her first FJT win! With a 148 total, Staples finished one stroke ahead of Juliana Camargo, who hails from Winter Garden. Camargo had a consistent second round of 73, after posting a first round 76, to finish with a 149 and Victoria Hwang rounded out the top three with a 150 total.
The FJT 13-15 division will meet the 16-18 division at Rocky Bayou Country Club, located in Niceville, October 1-2 for the next stop on the schedule!