Around the Green
The latest golf-related news, notes, and feature stories from the TGA.
Roberts and Esparza Lead Collegiate Preview
Briefly: Gaia Esparza of Helotes leads the Girls Division of the Collegiate Preview after shooting 6-over par across 36 holes on Monday. Reese Roberts of Dallas leads the Boys Division at 11-under following rounds of 68-65.
Leaders: Helotes’ Gaia Esparza leads the Girls Division after rounds of 80-70 on Monday. Her 2-under in the second round consisted of four birdies and two bogeys. She heads into the final round with a slim one-stroke lead. In the boy’s division, Dallas’ Reese Roberts tallied ten birdies and one eagle across 36 holes on Monday, including a four hole stretch to end the second round where he went 5-under. Roberts holds a three-stroke lead going into the final round.
In Contention: In the Boys Division, Kingwood’s Andrew Tucker sits three-strokes off the lead. Tucker has the low round of the tournament so far, an 8-under par 64 in the first round. Tucker followed that up with an even-par second round to stay in the hunt. Austin’s Blake Burt is in third place, six-strokes off the lead. Burt posted back-to-back rounds under par, going 71-68. Tied for fourth place are Jacob Cole and Ethan Dufresne. The pair carded scores of 72-68 and 71-69 respectively. In the Girls Division, Sidney Robertson of Tyler trails the leader by one-stroke after firing a 73-78 on Monday. Diane Guercio of Frisco is in third, four-strokes off the lead after rounds of 81-74.
Golf Course: Van Zandt Country Club was founded in 1966 and was designed by Leon Howard. The par-72 layout is playing to just over 6,800 yards for the Boys Division and nearly 6,000 yards for the Girls Division. Featuring tree lined fairways, water features, and numerous dog legs, the course demands players hit a variety of different shots.
Weather: Round one opened on a cool morning, with temperatures in the mid-70’s for the first tee time. Temperatures ramped up to the low-90’s as players completed their first round and settled in the upper-90’s throughout the second round.
Tournament Format: The Collegiate Preview is a 54-hole stroke-play event for players ages 14-19 that have an active membership with the Texas Junior Golf Alliance. The event is divided into two divisions: Boys and Girls.
Texas Junior Golf Alliance: The Alliance is a joint venture between the Texas Golf Association, Northern and Southern Texas PGA and Houston Golf Association. The goal of the Alliance was to allow junior golfers a clear path to the best tournaments in Texas. Each of the three tier-two organizations (STPGA, NTPGA, HGA) conduct events that serve as qualifiers into the statewide tier-one events run by the Legends Junior Tour (LJT). This allows players to compete in local events in which they can earn spots to play in statewide tournaments.
Tournament Exemptions: All players that finish in the top half of each division will earn points towards the LJT Player of the Year Standings. The event is ranked by Junior Golf Scoreboard, Golfweek, and WAGR.
Next Up: The Final Round of the Collegiate Preview is set to begin at 7:30 am off the No. 1 tee at Van Zandt Country Club on Tuesday, June 21.