Barber Wins Boys Junior By One Stroke
Blayne Barber fired a final round 3-under par 69 to capture the 52nd Florida State Boys Junior Championship as Tyler McCumber came from one stroke down to take the junior division title at Timuquana Country Club in Jacksonville on July 10-12.
In the Boys 16-18 age division, Blayne Barber, 16, from Lake City, posted a tournament total of 10-under par 206 to win the 2006 Championship. “It feels really good,” said Barber. “I just hope to keep it going and see what else I can do.” Barber was consistent throughout the tournament recording rounds of 69-68-69 to top the field by one stroke. Barber, who recently won the Future Masters in Alabama, went into the final round sharing first place with Connor Arendell. “I knew I just had to hang in there and keep making pars and birdies,” said Barber. In the final round, Barber made the turn at even par and found himself tied with Tyson Alexander heading to the 17th hole. On 17, Barber sank a 15 foot birdie putt to pull ahead by one and ultimately win the Championship. Barber made three birdies each on the front and back nines in the final round. “I hit the ball solid all week,” said the home schooled Barber. “I also putted really well, and I didn’t have any three putts.”
Tyson Alexander, 17, from Gainesville, placed second just one shot shy of Barber. Alexander, who will be attending the University of Florida in the fall, was a first round co-leader with a 68, then posted rounds of 70-69 to finish with a 207. Christopher Biuso, 16, of Tampa, shot rounds of 71-69-71--211 to lock up third place.
Tyler McCumber, 15, of Ponte Vedra Beach, shot a 5-under par 67 in the final round to claim the 13-15 junior division title by one stroke. McCumber shot a 71 in the first round then pulled within one stroke of leader Julian Suri with a second round score of 69. McCumber clinched the Championship on the 18th hole after hitting an approach shot less than two feet from the hole and making the birdie putt for the win.
Joshua Seale, 15, of Orlando, blasted a 66 in the final round, the low round of the day in the junior division, to move ahead into second place. Seale shot a 73-69 in the first two rounds. Julian Suri fell to third place after shooting a final round of 2-under par 70. Suri, 15, of St. Augustine, led after the first two rounds with scores of 67-72.
Competitors first must have qualified at one of the six sites across the state in 18 holes of stroke play. The Championship field featured 90 of the top male amateur golfers in the state including qualifiers and exempt players. The field was divided into two age divisions; 13-15 junior division and 16-18 regular division. The 16-18 age division of 63 included 23 exempt players while the 13-15 age division featured three exempt players. For the second year, competitors played 54 holes of stroke play over the course of three days.
The Champion of the Regular division receives three exemptions into AJGA events. The top five from the Regular division receive two exemptions each into AJGA events and the top ten finishers will receive one exemption toward an AJGA open tournament. Additionally, the top 12 finishes in the 16-18 division will be invited to compete in the Florida State Junior Match Play Invitational. The top six finishes in the 13-15 division will also be invited to compete in the Junior Match Play Invitational. The top three finishers in each division receive full exemption into the Florida Junior Tour (FJT).
To enter, participants must be between the ages of 13-18 and not attending college. Also, the juniors must not have a handicap index higher than 17.4.
For pairings, tee-times and complete results, please see www.fsga.org.
Organized in 1913, the Florida State Golf Association is a not-for-profit organization that governs amateur golf in the state of Florida. In addition to conducting 22 championships for amateur golfers in the state, the FSGA is responsible for more than 40 qualifying tournaments for USGA National Championships and the new Florida Junior Tour. The FSGA also maintains the USGA Handicap System, performs course ratings throughout Florida and assists in junior programs and scholarships.