Kim Fires Record 64 to Win at Summerfield
In the girls field, Stephanie Kim, 16, of Bayside, NY, captured her first FJT title winning by five strokes. Kim, who resides in Orlando, posted a 1-under par 70 in the first round to trail the two leaders by one stroke. “I was comfortable with my first round score,” said Kim. “I knew if I played well in the final round, I would be ok.” Starting on the 10th hole in the final round, Kim made three consecutive birdies on her first three holes. Despite a two stroke penalty for hitting the wrong ball on 13, Kim totaled eight birdies and 24 putts in the final round to turn in a 7-under par 64 for the win. “I was hitting the ball a lot better in the final round,” said Kim. “I feel like my game is really coming together.” Kim’s final round 64 broke three FJT records in the division including lowest score for 18 and 36 holes as well as lowest final round. “It’s great to break records as well as personal ones,” said Kim. First round co-leader Ginger Howard, 13, of Bradenton, had her best finish in a 16-18 age division event taking second place with rounds of 69-70—139. Howard has two wins in the 13-15 age division. First round co-leader Paula Reto, 17, of Coral Springs, claimed third place shooting a 69-72.
Christopher Biuso, 17, of Temple Terrace, went wire-to-wire to win the boys division by one stroke. Biuso shot a 5-under par 66 in the first round to have a two stroke advantage heading into the final round. Biuso posted a 72 in the final round to hold on to the lead with a 138 total and gain his second FJT victory. Last year, Biuso won a Qualifying Series event. Ian McConnell, 15, of Riverview, and Joseph Byun, 17, of Lake Mary, tied for second place each shooting a 139 total. McConnell posted a 70-69 as Byun recorded a 69-70. Carson Weinand, 16, of Naples, took sole possession of fourth place after a final round 67. Combined with a 74 in the first round, Weinand finished at 141 for the tournament.
The 2007-2008 season consists of 21 events for juniors, male and female, ages 13-18. Beginning in September and running through May, the FJT schedule will play at some of the state’s top courses including Victoria Hills Golf Club and Lake Jovita Golf and Country Club. This year will also feature 54-hole events over the Thanksgiving and Easter weekends. The FJT’s focus is on quality, affordability and integrity. Tournaments consist of 36 holes conducted over 2 days, typically weekends, with an entry fee of $95. Scholarship entry is available to junior golfers unable to afford the entry fee.
Working closely with the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA), FJT top competitors will receive exemptions and performance points towards AJGA events. The FJT is the only Florida tour to participate in the AJGA’s Performance Based Process. In addition, FJT events will be ranked by the Junior Golf Scoreboard, which helps junior golfers market themselves without having to travel the country. The FJT will maintain a points list to assist in determining Junior Player-of-the-Year and invitations to other tournaments.
The FJT website, www.floridajuniortour.org, is a great source for juniors and parents. There, participants can register for membership and tournaments as well as view player profiles, scoring history, and other valuable information.
The FJT is conducted by the Florida State Golf Association which conducts 25 State Championships and more than 40 qualifying tournaments for USGA National Championships. The FSGA also maintains the USGA Handicap System, performs course ratings throughout Florida and assists in junior programs and scholarships.