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After a practice round of 74 the day before, I arrived to Downing Municipal Golf Course on July 19th for the first round of the the EDGA Junior Stroke play feeling confident.  Being the defending champion added a little extra pressure for this tournament, however it also made me know that I could get the win.

The first round of the tournament was successful. I played well and hit almost all fairways and hit lots of greens. I got up and down when I needed to, which led to my low score of 75. I was pumped to see where my score placed me.

I went into the second round 1 stroke down and tied for second. The course was extremely wet teeming with large puddles of standing water in every fairway.  I was surprised that we were set to play, but I appreciated the opportunity to reclaim the title.  Plus, I actually enjoy playing in the rain and bad conditions since it helps me focus carefully on each shot. It gives me some “fire” inside since many other players complain about it which tends ruin their score before they even start the round.

My round started off with me teeing off into a puddle, moving my ball into the rough, hitting into another puddle, moving it, hitting it on the green, and two putting for a par. I felt like it was going to be a great day already and I wanted the title of this year’s EDGA Junior Stroke Play Champion more than ever.

I played my best, and, under the conditions, I felt like I shot an impressive round of 76. There were some holes were I could’ve hit a shot differently, but that’s golf :). I played a good game with good strategies that involved playing to the pin since the greens were soaking wet, and hitting my putts VERY hard to get them to the hole. I ended powerfully with a par which finished the day off perfectly.

The winner shot 75-70 followed by the runner up with 74-72. I was disappointed to place 3rd, but I realized that I love to live in an area with such great competition because it pushes me to be my best.

The final leaderboard is here: