59th Boys' Junior Preview
One hundred and sixty-eight juniors are preparing for the 59th Boys' Junior Championship that begins on Tuesday, July 9th at Sara Bay Country Club and Bradenton Country Club. Nearly four hundred juniors from Florida attempted to make the championship field by playing in qualifiers around the state.
The Florida State Golf Association (FSGA) is excited to bring this championship to the very historic and challenging host clubs, Sara Bay Country Club and Bradenton Country Club. Sara Bay C.C., located in Sarasota, was formed in 1926 and was designed by renowned architect, Donld Ross. The club is the site of the fabled match between the world's best amateur, Bobby Jones, and the best professional, Walter Hagen, in which Hagen recalls as the worst "drubbing" he ever suffered.
Bradenton Country Club is co-hosting the Boys' Junior with Sara Bay this year. Bradenton C.C. is located about five miles north of Sara Bay C.C. in the city of Bradenton. The course was also designed by Donald Ross and opened in 1924. The course will be an excellent condition and the par 71 layout will prove a challenging test for the juniors.
All boys will play eighteen holes at both Sara Bay C.C. and Bradenton C.C. before a cut is made. The final round will be held at Sara Bay C.C. The field is split between to two age divisions, Boys 16-18 and Boys 13-15. The Boys 16-18 age division will be cut to low 51 scores and ties while the Boys 13-15 division will be cut to the low 21 scores and ties. The Boys 16-18 division will essentially play the "tips" at both courses while the younger division will play approximately 6,650 yards. (The 17th hole at Sara Bay C.C. is being shortened and is playing as a par 4 making both courses a par 71).
Some of the Players to Watch:
Anthony Gabriele, West Palm Beach - Currently on top of the Florida Junior Tour (FJT) points list. Has six top five finishes in FJT events this year.
Tyler Strafaci, Davie - Leading the FJT points list in the Boys 13-15 division. Has three wins already this year! Has a 71.4 stroke average through six events.
Matt Young, Tallahassee - Sits in second on the FJT points list. Won the FJT event in his hometown with rounds of 73-70.
Austen Truslow, New Smyrna Beach - Currently the 50th best ranked junior worldwide. Set records in 2012 in route to becoming the junior state champion in Maine.
Philip Knowles, Bradenton - Member at Bradenton C.C. and one of the highest ranked juniors in the field.
Travis Trace, Jacksonville - Won the FJT 54-hole Major event at Innisbrook Resort by shooting 71-73-67.
Ben and Jacob Huizinga, Orlando - Both are very strong players. Jacob is playing in the 13-15 age division. Ben is in the 16-18 age division and recently qualified for the U.S. Junior Championship.
Brock Ochsenreiter, Destin - A bomber from the Panhandle. Brock is a birdie machine and capable of some exciting rounds.
Ramsey Touchberry, Bradenton - A local who recently finished T13 in the State Amateur. Committed to play for University of Florida.
Spectators are welcome at the championship. Limited spectator carts will be available each day for $24 plus tax. Golf attire is required.
The Florida State Golf Association and its members are celebrating our 100th birthday this year. The FSGA was formed in 1913 and has grown to become the largest state or regional golf association in the country. Currently, over 210,000 golfers keep their handicap through the FSGA's GHIN Handicap System and over 800 golf clubs in the state are full member clubs of the association. With over 470 days of competition at some of Florida's top venues, 2013 promises to be one of our best years yet. This year we invite all Florida golfers to join our staff, our members and our member golf clubs in celebrating this centennial year. For more information on the FSGA or this Championship please contact their office at 813-632-3742.