David Ford wins AJGA Invitational, and PGA Tour berth
David Ford won more than a trophy at the AJGA Invitational (AJGA photo)
Every where we look in this young summer season, it seems like a UNC Chapel Hill golfer (present or future) is lighting up a golf course somewhere.
Today, it was UNC commit David Ford of Peachtree Corners, Georgia bringing home a trophy, and a lot more at the AJGA Invitational. Played at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, NC, the winner gets a sponsor's exemption into the Wyndham Championship, one of the oldest events on the PGA Tour. (It was founded in 1938 and played for years as the Greater Greensboro Open -- oh how we miss the pre-big money sponsor days when the locations were in the tournament names!)
Ford took command of the 72-hole event in the second round, birdieing three of the last four holes to fire 5-under 65 on the par-70 layout. A third round 69 got Ford to 8-under and sleeping on a two-shot lead.
And while Ford posted his highest round of the event on Friday, neither of the other players in the final group (Sean-Karl Dobson of Austin or Wells Williams of West Point, Miss.) could gain any ground.
But there was another player four groups in front who had designs on going out in style.
Playing the last junior event of his career, the 2019 Rolex Junior POY Maxwell Moldovan of Ohio
finished his round with a flourish of five-straight birdies to shoot 5-under-par 65 and grabbed the clubhouse lead for more than half an hour.
He was, perhaps, trying to channel the performance of Michael Brennan at the Maridoe Junior in Texas
the day prior. Brennan, also playing his last junior event, went out with a victory.
Alas, Ford's 8-under-par 272 was good enough for a two-stroke victory. Moldovan and Wells Williams finished T2 at 6-under 274.
"I've put myself in pretty good position my last four or five tournaments," Ford told the AJGA. "I had the lead going into today, and to finish it off, it means a lot. I've been working for this for awhile."
In August, Wells will get a chance to see how his game stacks up on the PGA Tour when he plays the Wyndham.
As for Moldovan, we think he has a bright career ahead of him -- last year in his first U.S. Amateur he made waves at Pinehurst. He won his first match against famed Mid-Am (and Walker Cupper) Stewart Hagestad before going out in the second round in 19 holes to none other than eventual champion Andy Ogletree. It was the only time all week when Ogletree would need to play Pinehurst No. 2's famous 18th hole.
ABOUT THE AJGA Invitational at Sedgefield
72-hole invitational stroke play championship for boys
aged 12-19. Cut after 54 holes. Almost 100 past
participants have made the jump from playing the
AJGA Invitational at Sedgefield to the PGA Tour. Past
champions include 12-time PGA Tour winner Justin
Thomas and 2-time winner Brian Harman.
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