Tomlinson & Taylor Prevail in Viera
Over 80 juniors in the 16-18 age division ventured to Viera East Golf Club in Viera, FL for another Florida Junior Tour event . The players found difficult windy conditions Viera East, but low scores were still posted on the slightly shorter layout that is normally seen at FJT events.
In the girls division, Emmy Martin took the first round lead with the only under par round of the tournament (71). Lurking just one stroke behind was Taylor Tomlinson and Katie Holt, plus there were several girls withing a few shots of the leader.
In the final round Emma Albrecht started strong making the turn at one under par, however, after a few late bogeys she posted rounds of 74-73--147 and had to wait for the leaders to come in.
Playing in the final group were the leaders; Emmy Martin (71), Taylor Tomlinson (72) and Katie Holt (72). Holt shot nines of 37-38 to post a 147 total to tie Albrecht.
Martin and Tomlinson were battling for the title all day. Martin shot 37 on their first nine while Tomlinson shot 36 to tie Martin heading into their final nine. Through 14 holes they were tied and then Martin made a bogey on their 15th hole (hole 6) to fall one shot back. On their 17th hole Tomlinson made a timely birdie and to take a two shot lead which she held on to for her first win the 16-18 age division.
Tomlinson, of Gainesville, shot rounds of 72-72--144 to win. Emmy Martin, of Odessa, finished second while Katie Holt, of Clermont, and Emma Albrecht, of Ormond Beach, finished tied for third.
The boys division was playing the par 72 layout at 6,669 yards and several players broke par each day. Payton Taylor took a three shot lead over two players in the first round after posting a 68.
In the final round, Matthew Ruel, fired a 69 to post the first under par total (143), but he finished about 40 minutes before the leaders so he had to wait and see what would happen.
Playing in the group ahead of the leaders, Gabriel Lench caught fire making birdies on holes 1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 12 and 18 to post the low round of the tournament at 67 and a tournament total of 139 (-5).
The only player in the final group that continued their great play from Saturday was Payton Taylor, of Vero Beach. He made birdies on holes 1, 3, 4, 5, 16, and 17 to post another 68 and a tournament total of 136 (-8) and captured his first FJT title in the 16-18 age division.
Lench, of Orlando, finished alone in second place firing 72-67--139 while Matthew Ruel finished in third place with rounds of 74-69--143.