Around the Green
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Heffernan, Vivier Capture 93rd Texas Junior Amateur Titles
KINGWOOD— Zach Heffernan of Fair Oaks Ranch and Nicole Vivier of Austin were crowned state champions Wednesday afternoon after both players posted impressive final round scores of 3-under par 69 and 1-under par 71, respectively, at The Clubs of Kingwood.
Heffernan started the day one shot off the lead and found himself with an 8-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole to guarantee his victory. The 2021 graduate sank the putt, as he had many times today when faced with a crucial putt.
“I made a lot of clutch putts that I needed to make today,” said Heffernan.
Teeing it up this morning he said his mindset was to play match play against the players in his group and to win. This determined attitude led him to a one-stroke victory that left him in disbelief.
“I still can’t believe I won,” said Heffernan of his win over a highly competitive field.
Richmond’s Stephen Campbell Jr. finished two strokes behind Heffernan in second place. Campbell started off hot 5-under through ten holes but ran into some trouble with a few bogeys on the back nine, bringing him to a 1-under 71 in his final round.
Dallas’ Michael Heidelbaugh and Argyle’s Gaven Lane finished tied for third by both posting a final round score of 1-over 73 to finish with tournament totals of 2-under par. Evan Vo of Austin finished in fifth with a tournament total of 1-under par.
In the Boys Division the Top 5 players received Fully Exempt status for the AJGA, while the Top 10 received 12 stars, Top 15 received 8 stars, and Top 25 received 4 stars.
Heffernan’s name is now alongside 1967 and 1969 champion Ben Crenshaw, a two-time Masters champion, the 1980 champion Jeff Maggert, a 3-time PGA Tour champion, and 1981 champion Scott Verplank, a 5-time PGA Tour champion as a Texas Junior Amateur champion.
Vivier’s final round 1-under 71 was the lone under-par round in the Girls Division and led her to a 3-over tournament total. She accredited her wire-to-wire victory to a relaxed mindset that led to an enjoyable experience.
“I just tried to have fun today, stay in the present, not think about my score and just focused on hitting good shots,” said Vivier. “I had no expectations coming into this tournament, I wanted to play well but most importantly I wanted to have fun.”
The 2020 graduate played consistently with two birdies and only one bogey in her final round, resulting in a five-stroke victory.
Fort Worth’s Savannah Barber finished in second place at 8-over par for the tournament. Her final round 2-over 74 included five birdies.
University of Southern California commit, Christine Wang finished in third place at 9-over par for the tournament. Lauren Nguyen of Katy shot a final round 3-over 75 to finish in fourth. Plano’s Olivia Mitchell ended the tournament with a 12-over par total in fifth place.
In the Girls Division the Top 3 players were awarded Fully Exempt for the AJGA, the Top 5 received 12 stars, Top 10 received 8 stars, and the Top 15 received 4 stars.
Vivier joins a list of impressive champions including, Angela Stanford who has won 5 LPGA tournaments, Kelsey Vines who played professionally, A&M University stand-out Courtney Dow, and Annika Clark who won the Women’s Texas Amateur in 2015.
The Legends Junior Tour extends its sincere appreciation to The Clubs of Kingwood, the welcoming membership, and hard-working staff, as well as our volunteers, for all their dedication and efforts in making the 2019 Texas Junior Amateur a memorable event.
For more information on this year’s Texas Junior Amateur, including complete scoring click here.