Critch, Bockholt, Jones win Winter Classic titles
DALLAS, Texas – Thomas Critch, Thomas Bockholt III and Hailey Jones capture victories in their respective divisions of the Legends Junior Tour’s 2016 season opener at the eighth Winter Classic. Dallas Athletic Club’s Blue Course proved a tough test for 84 of the top players in the state and surrounding region. Cold temperatures and high winds made Sunday’s final round difficult.
Tied for the lead in the Boys 15-18 division heading into the final round, Cedar Park’s Critch shot a final round 1-over-par 73 and won by one shot. He carded a birdie on the difficult par-5 third hole and another on the par-5 10th. He had three bogeys on the day, including one on the hardest hole of the day, the par-4 17th but survived by one shot over Shuai Ming Wong of Houston.
Wong carded his second 1-over 73 on Sunday for a tournament total of 2-over 146. Playing in the group ahead of Critch, Wong missed a 4-foot putt on the 18th hole, and that proved to be the difference at having a chance in a playoff.
Frisco’s Jenson Rogenes carded a final-round 73 as well and that put him into a tie for third place with Sean Wilcox, also from Frisco. Humble’s Ryan Bailey finished in fifth place, four shots behind Critch. Dallas’ Turner Hosch and Plano’s Parker Coody finished in a tie for sixth place.
In the Boys 14 & Under division, Bockholt led wire-to-wire to capture his first victory on the Legends Junior Tour. He carded consecutive rounds of 2-over 74 and won by seven shots. Starting on hole 10, Bockholt birdied two of his first four holes before making a double bogey on the par-4 15th, the third toughest hole of the day. He made two bogeys on his back nine, but he still won going away.
Bockholt finished seven shots ahead of Heath’s Matthew Watkins, who carded a final-round 78. Prosper’s Matthew Griggs and Kingwood’s Damin Strydom finished tied for third place, eight shots back of the winner, Bockholt.
Dallas’ Hailey Jones, playing at her home course, finished with a final-round 1-over 73 and won by one shot. Last year’s Girls 12-18 Player of the Year, Jones carded three birdies against two bogeys and a double bogey, but her birdie on her final hole, the par-4 ninth, proved to be the clutch putt of the tournament.
Allen’s Ellie Szeryk finished one shot back of Jones at 4-over-par 148. Her round was up and down, but she finished strong with a 1-under 35 on her back nine. Amber Park, also from Allen, finished four shots back of Jones. Kennedy Pedigo and Jennie Park finished tied for fourth place.
For complete scoring from LJT's Winter Classic, click here.