Date: January 09, 2018
Author: Christian Puccini

Heaton and Porter win SA Junior Amateur Championship

Thomas Heaton from (The Australian Golf Club – NSW) and Cassie Porter (Peregian Springs, QLD) both 15-years old, have been crowned the 2018 SA Junior Amateur Champions.

The Championship was conducted over 54 holes on 8-9 January, with the first 36 holes held at Kooyonga on day one and final 18 holes on day two on the West Course at The Grange Golf Club.

Golf SA received a total of 105 registrations for the combined boys & girls championship with the maximum combined field size being 90 players. 70 competitors travelled from interstate with 20 local players in the field competing.

In the Boys Championship, Heaton trailed Connor Fewkes (WA) by one stroke after the first day at Kooyonga, with rounds of 71, 74 to be 1-over par, with 8 birdies to his name thru 36 holes.

“I teed off early in round one, then the wind got up in the afternoon and the course was a lot more difficult, so it was really good to have four birdies each round.” Heaton said.

In the final round at The Grange Golf Club, Heaton held his nerve posting three birdies on his way to a 74, to finish with a 54-hole total of 219 (+3). Fewkes who closed with a 76, finished runner up on (+4), while Adam Thorp (ACT) finished third (+5) with rounds of 75, 74, 72.

“The tried to play my own game and do the best I can and try and make a few birdies and put the pressure on. I played pretty consistent all day and it was good enough to get the job done in the end.”

“I didn’t know I had won until I counted my scores up at the end. I just tried to focus on holing the final putt in the end. I hit on average, 13 greens per round so I hit them pretty good. I kept it under the wind by hitting a lot of low shot off the tee which kept me in play and I hit a lot of greens.”

Heaton was ecstatic with the win joining the likes of Adam Bland and Wade Ormsby as past SA junior winners.

“It gives me a lot of confidence heading into my next couple of tournaments for sure, it’s really good to get a win under my belt and feel what it’s like to win.” Heaton added.

Best-placed South Australians were Jack Tanner and Frank Vucic both from Glenelg Golf Club, who finished in a tie for sixth at 6-over.

Best Nett was won by Will Arnold from Royal Adelaide Golf Club (217c/b).

In the Girl's Championship, 15 year-old Cassie Porter (Peregian Spring – QLD) was ultra-consistent throughout the 54 holes, posting three even par rounds of 74 to claim the girls championship by eight strokes.

After starting with a double bogey on her first hole of the tournament, Porter posted five birdies each round at Kooyonga to hold a six stroke lead after 36 holes ahead of Glenelg’s Charley Jacobs, who made an albatross two, in the second round, on the par 5 13th hole.

In gusty conditions at The Grange, Porter closed out the tournament well, making birdie on two of her final three holes to claim the championship at even par (222)

“I was hitting the ball pretty well throughout the two rounds yesterday and I made some pretty good up and downs from pretty much everywhere that kept me in play and within the lead, so that definitely helped.” Porter said.

Porter’s mindset didn’t really change heading into day two and she was quite comfortable holding the lead.

“I really didn’t think about my lead, I kind of went out there and just went through my processes and I let what happen happen really.”

“My ball striking was definitely a positive, I probably could have hit the ball a little better, but the results came and that is all the really matters. My putting over the two days definitely helped with my score and making up and downs saved me a couple of times.”

“It definitely feels good, I watched Amy (Chu) win it last year and I set a goal for myself that I was going to win it this year and it felt good to achieve that” Porter added.

Best Nett was won by Nayoung Ku from Mt Osmond Golf Club (226).

For all scores, CLICK HERE to visit the Championship event page.