Ethan Paschal, Vanessa Borovilos earn wins at Dustin Johnson World Junior
Ethan Paschal and Vanessa Borovilos (Dustin Johnson World Junior Photo)
Ethan Paschal and Vanessa Borovilos (Dustin Johnson World Junior Photo)

Ethan Paschal (Fayetteville, N.C.) birdied the first playoff hole to cap a stunning rally, while Vanessa Borovilos (Toronto, Canada) cruised en route to victory at the Dustin Johnson World Junior Golf Championship Presented by LA Golf at TPC Myrtle Beach.

Paschal trailed by as many as five strokes in the final round but rode a furious back-nine rally to victory. The University of North Carolina signee was 1-over on the day before catching fire and birdieing holes 13, 14, 15 and 18, to shoot 69 and force the playoff. 

Conversely, Jackson Herrington (Dickson, Tenn.) appeared to be cruising to victory before making a bogey on the par 3 No. 17 and the par-5 18th, allowing Paschal to draw even at 4-under par after 54 holes.

The sudden death playoff was contested on No. 18, and Paschal earned the win in the ninth annual DJ World Junior by rolling in a five-foot birdie putt. 

Tyler Watts (Huntsville, Ala.), shot his second consecutive 69, highlighted by an 18th hole birdie, and finished the DJ World Junior at 3-under par, good for third place. Blades Brown (Nashville, Tenn.), America’s No. 1 ranked junior, according to Junior Golf Scoreboard (JGS), shot a final round 70 and finished in fourth place with a cumulative score of 2-under par.

On a difficult day for scoring, Borovilos’ 75 was good enough to maintain the three-shot advantage she had entering the final round. She finished the event at even par, three shots clear of Mia Hammond (New Albany, Ohio), Brynn Kort (Henderson, Nev.) and Ryleigh Knaub (DeBary, Fla.).

A Texas A&M signee, Borovilos is the fifth-ranked junior girl in America, according to JGS, and she was never seriously threatened over the final 18 holes by a field that included 26 top 100 girls. TPC Myrtle Beach presented a demanding test, and the key to Borovilos’ victory was her ability to avoid the big number, as she made just eight bogeys all weekend, the lowest number in the field.

A 54-hole, college-style event, 90 players (54 boys, 36 girls) secured invitations to the ninth annual DJ World Junior, including Blades Brown (Nashville, Tenn.), the world’s top-ranked junior boy.

In total 68 of the 90 players were ranked among America’s top 100 juniors by either Golfweek or Junior Golf Scoreboard, highlighting the depth and quality of the field. On the boys’ side, 42 of the 54 players were ranked among America’s top 100 juniors, while 26 of the 36 girls were top 100 players.

While just nine years old, three past champions at the DJ World Junior have already won at the game’s highest levels. In the last 12 months, Akshay Bhatia and Nick Dunlap have won on the PGA TOUR, while Alexa Pano triumphed on the LPGA Tour.

With Johnson’s support, the tournament provides players with one of the premier experiences in junior golf and the opportunity to test themselves against outstanding competition.

Recap courtesy of the Dustin Johnson World Junior Golf Championships.

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ABOUT THE Dustin Johnson World Junior

Started in 2016 by the Dustin Johnson Foundation, the Dustin Johnson World Junior Championship is a 54- hole invitational event for Boys and Girls ages 13- 18. Those who do not meet the invitation criteria will have an opportunity to earn a spot via an 18-hole qualifier prior to the event.

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