Piercen Hunt (WGA/Twitter photo)
Piercen Hunt had already started the runaway. On a 36-hole day to end the Western Junior, he just had to finish it.
Hunt, an Illinois commit from Hartland, Wis., capped a seven-shot victory in the premier mid-amateur event of the Midwest with closing rounds of 72-70. He played 72 holes at Rich Harvest Farms, site of the 2017 NCAA Championships, in 10 under.
Hunt had at least a share of the lead after every round. Behind him, Scotty Kennon of Bandon, Ore., was second at 3 under. Kennon closed with 72-68.
Yuki Moriyama of Japan had a final-round 67, the best score of the day, for a 2-under total that left him in third. It was a strong comeback from his third-round 78.
Three players tied for fourth at even par, including Simms Abney, Connor Gaunt and Dawson Ovard.
ROUND TWO RECAP
Piercen Hunt is beginning to pull away at the Western Junior. It was a wet day at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill., but that didn’t bother the Illinois commit from Hartland, Wis. Hunt didn’t make a bogey on Wednesday and at 8 under for 36 holes, has a five-shot lead.
Hunt opened his day with three consecutive birdies. He added two more at Nos. 7 and 16 to effectively put himself out of reach. Hunt has had steady rounds of 69-67 as he chases the prestigious Western Junior title in his native Midwest.
“This is not an easy course, and you have to roll with the punches,” Hunt said after the first round.
Behind him, Simms Abney, Yuki Moriyama and Sudarshan Yellamaraju are all tied for second at 3 under.
A group of four players are knotted behind that at 1 under.
The cut fell at the end of the day, and the 44 players who were at 5-over 149 or better will get to tee it up again on Thursday.
ROUND ONE RECAP
The top of the leaderboard is crowded after one round at the Western Junior, and there’s still golf to play in the opening round. The day was eventually called for darkness with a handful of players needed to finish their first round.
As it stands, three players are tied at the top after rounds of 3-under 69. That trio includes Sudarshan Yellamaraju, Christopher Fosdick and Piercen Hunt. They turned in three colorful cards, with two eagles and 16 birdies between them.
Behind the leaders, there is a crowd of five players at 2 under. That includes Luc Warnock, Tucker Clark, Bo Jin, Sam Tidd and Connor Gaunt.
The 10-man group at even par includes one player, Hal Dove, who has three holes remaining in his opening round.
Those players who did not finish on Tuesday will return to the course at 8 a.m. CT to resume play.
ABOUT THE Western Junior
72-hole stroke play event open to male amateur
golfers who are at least 16 years old and not
older than 19 by the end of the tournament.
Entrants must have an official and verified
handicap index not exceeding three strokes.
maximum of 156.
View Complete Tournament Information