PALATKA, Fla. — Having captured last year's Florida Azalea Amateur, class-of-2015 junior golfer Andreas Halvorsen of Norway is a step closer to making it back-to-back titles.
On Saturday at Palatka Golf Club, Halvorsen shot three-under 67 to back up an opening-round 65. The same two rounds, shot in reverse order, were posted by Halvorsen during his win in 2014.
Greyson Porter, a high-school golfer from Clearwater, Fla. is in second place after shooting 66 on Saturday. He's two back of Halvorsen and two ahead of a trio of players in third place at four-under 136, including Corey Carlson, Timothy Colanta, and Edward Richardson.
Richardson, a 46-year-old from England, captured the 2014 St. Augustine Amateur.
Fifteen total players are under par through two rounds, and 25 are within 10 shots of the lead.
Started 12 years after the well-known Azalea Invitational at the Country Club of Charleston as a two-man team tourney, the Florida Azalea field has over the years boasted players who have gone on to greatness at the next level. Tommy Aaron, who teamed with Dan Sykes for the 1960 Florida Azalea team title, went on to win the 1973 Masters. Bob Murphy, winner of back-to- back Florida Azalea titles while playing for the University of Florida golf team in 1965-66, was an 11-time winner on the PGA Tour and is currently a golf analyst for NBC.
More recently, there is the 1997 champ Ryuji Imada of Japan. Leading the list of those not winning the Florida Azalea is Arron Oberholser. The winner of the 2006 AT&T Pebble Beach, Oberholser was runner-up to Palatka’s Sean Pacetti in the 1998 event.