Around the Green
The latest golf-related news, notes, and feature stories from the TGA.
McMellon, Lewis, and Yuan Win at Lanny Wadkins JC
Briefly: Garland’s Garrett McMellon claims his first LJT victory in a two-hole playoff after finishing at 3-under par 137 for the tournament. Joshua’s Kaylee Yuan goes wire to wire to won the Girls 12-18 Division at even par 140, while Dallas’ Cameron Lewis won the Boys 14 & Under Division in a playoff after finishing at 1 over-par 141.
Champions: Garrett McMellon entered Tuesday’s final round in the second to last group, two shots off the lead after a first round 68. McMellon started the day with bogeys on holes #1 & #3, but rallied with birdies on Holes #4, #10, and #12 to post 1-under 69 on the day. McMellon finished at 3-under par 137 for the tournament and secured his first LJT victory with a 12 foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole.
Joshua’s Kaylee Yuan won the Girls 12-18 Division after shooting rounds of 68-72 to finish the championship at even par and nine strokes ahead of the field. She posted the only under par round of the tournament in the girls division with a 2 under par score of 68 in the first round. This is Yuan’s second LJT victory in as many starts.
Dallas’ Cameron Lewis won the Boys 14 & Under Division at 1-over 141 overall in a playoff Dexter Zimmerman. Lewis drained a 50 foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole to claim the title. Lewis recorded rounds of 72-69 for his first LJT victory.
Top Finishers: In the Boys 15-18 Division, Belton’s Chandler Cooke finished runner up after shooting rounds of 67-70 to finish at 3-under par 137 and losing in a playoff. Dallas’s Blake Goodnight, the first round leader, took home third place after finishing one off the pace at 2-under par 138. Jack Hollingsed of Dallas finished at 1-under par 139, which was good enough for fourth place, and New Braunfels’ Kyle Doolittle rounded out the top five at even-par 140.
In the Girls 12-18 Division, Prosper’s Lucy Kate Smith finished runner up at 9-over 149. Austin’s Julia Sosa finished in 3rd place with a score of 10-over 150. San Antonio’s Abby Jimenez claimed fourth place at 11-over 151, and Dallas’s Bella Scucchi rounded out the top five at 16-over 156.
In the Boys 14 & Under Division, Dallas’s Dexter Zimmerman finishes runner up after losing in a playoff at 1-over par 141. Lantana’s Henry Jackson finishes third at 8-over par 148.
Golf Course: Iron Horse Golf Course, located in North Richland Hills, is hosting the Lanny Wadkins Junior Championship for the first time in the tournament’s 15-year history. Century-old oak, mesquite and cottonwood trees frame emerald Bermuda fairways and manicured greens, which traverse beneath a working railroad trestle – with numerous doglegs, two meandering creeks which come into play on 17 holes, and unique bunkering creating both strategic diversity and a breathtaking backdrop for golf. Adding to the charm and nostalgia of the course are three authentic caboose cars, which serve as on-course facilities.
Weather: Temperatures began in the low 80’s and did not creep into the 90’s until late in the afternoon. Players enjoyed cloud cover and a cool breeze in the morning as storms rolled through the opposite side of the DFW metro.
Tournament Format: The Lanny Wadkins Junior Championship is a 36-hole stroke play event for players ages 12-18 years old. Membership with a Texas Junior Golf Alliance Partner is required to play in Legends Junior Tour events.
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.
Player of the Year Points: Garrett McMellon, Kaylee Yuan and Cameron Lewis all earned 1000 points in the Player of the Year Point Race. Points are awarded at each tournament to the top half of each age division.
Next Up: The Legends Junior Tour heads to White Bluff Resort on July 24-26 for the 97th Texas Junior Amateur. The 240-player field is split between four division: Boys, Girls, Boys 14 & Under and Girls 14 & Under. The Boys Division will play the New Course at White Bluff, while the Girls Division and both 14 & Under Divisions will play the Old Course at White Bluff.