Amateur Victory: John Jonas goes wire-to-wire at Florida Open
2015 Florida Open winner John Jonas (FSGA photo)
2015 Florida Open winner John Jonas (FSGA photo)
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — John Jonas started the day with a four-stroke lead after two impressive rounds of 63-68 at his home course, Timuquana Country Club in Jacksonville.

The final round got off to a slow start for Jonas after following up two birdies with two bogeys on the front nine. In the same group, Ryan Carter chased close behind Jonas after two birdies and an eagle on the first four holes. Meanwhile, Philip Knowles, of Bradenton, continued his steady play and moved up the leaderboard. Knowles, who posted back-to-back rounds of 69 on Friday and Saturday, went into his final nine of the tournament at nine-under par after three birdies on the front-nine. Jonas finished the front-nine at thirteen-under par, four strokes ahead of Knowles and three strokes ahead of Carter.

The final nine of the Championship came down to a race between Knowles and Jonas. Jonas came back from his two bogeys on holes seven and eight with two birdies on holes ten and eleven. After a bogey on number ten, Knowles fought back with four birdies, narrowing Jonas' lead to two strokes.

Knowles, 2014 Amateur Match Play Champion, finished in second place with a score of 66, tournament total 204 (-12). Jonas completed round three at fourteen-under par, 202, to keep his strong grip on first place. Ryan Carter’s strong start faltered with a double bogey on hole nine and he finished the day with one birdie on the back nine for a three day total of 205 (-11) and a tied for third place finish. Joey Petronio played a steady final round with an eagle on the par five 15th hole and tied Carter in third place.

Winning the 69th Florida Open is John Jonas’ first FSGA Championship victory. Jonas is an amateur who plays college golf for the College of Charleston in South Carolina. Four amateurs finished in the top ten and Joey Petronio was the only professional to finish in the top three. Daniel Olsen, David Hronek, and Alan Morin tied for fifth place as professionals.

Started in 1942, The Florida Open Championship has produced past champions that include Willie Turnesa, Bob Murphy, Gary Koch, Bruce Fleisher, John Huston, Dudley Hart, and Bart Bryant. This is the sixth year the Florida State Golf Association will be conducting this great championship.

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