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Women's Western Junior: Bauman takes the title

GRANGER, Ind. (July 18, 2008)--Tory Bauman’s most recent golf trophy was the Wisconsin State High School Girls Championship that she captured last fall as a junior a Nicolet High.

Friday she won Icely Cup, awarded to the champion of the Women’s Western Golf Association’s (WWGA) 82nd National Junior Championship at Knollwood Country Club in Granger, Indiana. Her name will be added to previous winners Nancy Lopez, Cristie Kerr, Grace Park, Candy Hannemann and JoAnne Gunderson (Carner) to name a few.

Bauman, who lives in River Hills, Wisconsin, defeated Alexis Nelson of Mason, Ohio, in today’s final, 2 & 1.

Bauman took an early lead winning the first two holes, and Nelson the 3rd and 6th holes to even the match. Bauman won the 7th hole, but Nelson took the 9th hole to even the match again. Bauman took the lead for good on the 11th and birdied the 14th hole to gain a 2-up lead.

Nelson won the 15th hole, but Bauman took the 16th hole to go dormie. Both players tied the 17th hole with pars, giving Bauman the championship.

After the match, Nelson’s father noted: “Both girls played their hearts out, but Bauman seemed to make putts when she needed to.”

Bauman won all the par-3 holes, backing up that theory.

Bauman got serious about golf when she was about 14 years old. She spent the fall semester of her sophomore year and spring semester of her junior year at the David Leadbetter Golf Academy which fine-tuned her game in time leading up to her victory at Wisconsin High School Championship last fall.

She came to the Western Junior to get some match play experience leading up to next week’s USGA Girl’s Junior Amateur championship at Hartford Country Club in Hartford, Connecticut.

After the final match, she said that her duel on Tuesday was the hardest because of her match play inexperience.

But as she went through the week her confidence grew and she knew she had a chance to win the title.

When asked how to describe her feelings today, she said, “speechless and surprised.”

Not planning on making it to Friday's finale, she admitted to not bringing enough clothing with her.

Bauman said her experience this week taught her to “keep trying, and don’t ever give up even when you are down.”

In the fall, Bauman will return to Nicolet High School to defend her state title, and has made a verbal commitment to the University of Denver for fall, 2009.

Nelson played in this event last year losing in the second round to the eventual Winner, Dottie Ardina. She was born in Munster, Indiana, and moved to Mason, Ohio about six years ago, where her first teaching professional was Bill Hughes, father of fellow contestant, Kelsey Hughes from Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

In 2007, Nelson placed second in the Ohio State Girls Junior Championship and took third at the Cincinnati Women’s Metropolitan Amateur Tournament.

She also placed in the top-16 at the Ohio State Women’s Amateur Championship. In the fall, she returns to Mason High School for her Senior year and has her first golf team tournament just a few weeks away.

--Courtesy WWGA

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