Speirs reigns in Maine Junior Championship;
Hayes, Kelly win other divisions
Jesse Speirs, who last week nearly won the Bangor Open, followed up his second place Open finish with his first Maine Junior Championship title at Val Halla Golf and Recreation Center on Wednesday, defeating two-time Junior champ Shawn Warren, 4 and 3.
Speirs, who is just 15 years old, got it rolling in his semifinal match with an 8 and 7 victory over Chris Bixby and never let up. He never trailed in his match with Warren, who has been one of the state’s top junior players for three years.
In the 13-14 division, Jordan Kelly held off Jackie Royal for a 3 and 1 victory. Royal has perhaps the toughest semifinal match of the day, taking extra holes to advance. Kelly was solid through his round and closed out the match on 17.
In perhaps the highlight of the day, Johnny Hayes of Cape Elizabeth took 19 holes to best Sam Weiss of Blue Hill in the 12 and under division. Hayes, whose sister Alyssa is competing in the WMSGA championship being held at Sugarloaf this week, held off Weiss for the victory, despite Weiss’ very hot putter.
With his victory, Speirs will now anchor the Maine team in the New England Junior Amateur Championship to be held August 19-20 at Agawam Hunt in Rhode Island. While Warren has also made the team, the rest of the team will be determined by low scoring averages for all MSGA, PGA and USGA tournaments held through the Charlie’s Maine Open. Other returning players to the team from last year are expected to be Chris Woodward and Jeff Bouchard. Keep watching for more information coming on the New England Junior Championship!
Sam Weiss and Johnny Hayes, two 12-and-under division players, were finalists in the 2002 Maine Junior Golf Championship at Val Halla Golf and Recreation Center in Cumberland.
Weiss fought a hard battle against David Gushee, going four extra holes for the victory. Gushee was the top seed in the division, having shot a 37 to qualify in the nine-hole qualifier. Weiss advanced to the semifinals by defeating Curtis Dulac, and Hayes defeated Cole Benson. In the other quarterfinal match, it was Sam Ascanio and Ryan Gay.
In the 13-14 age division, the four finalists included Ron Kelton, the top seed, Jackie Royal, Jeffrey Cole and Jordan Kelly. Kelton played Royal and Cole played Kelly in the morning semifinal matches, with the winners advancing to the finals in the afternoon.
In the championship flight of 15-17-year-olds, Jesse Spiers, Chris Bixby, defending champion Shawn Warren and Tim Hardy competed in the semifinals that morning. Spiers, who nearly won the 2002 Bangor Open with an incredible string of golf, defeated Bixby in the semifinals, and Warren defeated Hardy.