AJGA First American Title Classic: Final results

TAMPA, Fla. (June 26, 2008)--Chase Marinell of Cape Coral, Fla., defeated Carson Weinand of Naples, Fla., with a par on the third playoff hole to win the Boys Division crown at the First American Title Junior Classic. Victoria Kiser of Orlando, Fla., won the Girls Division with a score of 2-under-par 214.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the First American Title Junior Classic was a 54-hole stroke play event played at Avila Golf & Country Club. The tournament field consisted of 54 boys and 24 girls, ages 12-18, from 10 states and China. The Boys Division played the par-72 course at 6,853 yards, while the Girls Division played at 6,114 yards.

After closing his round with three straight birdies to tie Weinand at even-par 216, Marinell clinched his first AJGA victory with a two-putt par from 60 feet on the third playoff hole.

“This is what you practice for,” Marinell said. “The AJGA is the cream of the crop and this is why I go to the course everyday and grind like I do.”

Weinand's second place finish gives him top-five finishes in consecutive AJGA events. Shun Yat Hak of Lake Mary, Fla., finished in third at 1-over-par 217 and Joseph Byun of Sanford, Fla., placed fourth at 2-over-par 218. Finishing in a four-way tie for fifth at 3-over-par 219 were George Letson of Tampa, Fla., Max McKay of St. Augustine, Fla., Zachery Sobel of Clearwater Beach, Fla., and Marcel Puyat of Bradenton, Fla.

In the Girls Division, Kiser sealed her victory with a birdie on the water-lined par-4 No. 18, the toughest hole on the course for the week. After striping a drive to the narrowest portion of the fairway, Kiser stuck an 8-iron to six feet from 148 yards out and drained the birdie putt for a four-shot victory.

“Throughout the day I had a lot of short birdie putts that just didn't go in,” Kiser. “I told myself that this one was going to go in. I read it pretty straight and I made it.”

Finishing in a tie for second at 2-over-par 218 were Ginger Howard of Bradenton, Fla., and Catherine O'Donnell of Ponte Vedra, Fla.

Perhaps the shot of the tournament came during Thursday's round as Shannon Pak of Kenner, La., aced the 148-yard par-3 No. 17 with a 6-iron on her way to finishing 11th.

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ABOUT THE AJGA First American Title Junior Classic

One of the AJGA series of "open" tournaments with a Performance Based Entry process (see below). Format is 54 holes of stroke play. Must be AJGA member.

Performance Based Entry Process
In 2003, the AJGA abandoned its tournament selection process that was based on the strength of a tournament application and resume in favor of a Performance Based Entry process. This enables 12-18-year-old members to earn their way into AJGA Open tournaments based on performances at the national, regional and state levels.

Through more than 20 years of research on junior golf tournaments, the AJGA has compiled a list of hundreds of tournaments included in Performance Based Entry. This includes national events, other junior tours, regional events as well as events on the state level. The AJGA records information on all players (AJGA members and non-members) who play in a recognized event and meet the required finish in that event.

The Performance Based Entry status is the main criterion used for non-exempt players to gain entry into an AJGA open event. AJGA members can view their status anytime in the AJGA Player Center on the AJGA Web site, ajga.org.

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