2023 CGA State Junior Championship – Day 1 RECAP

With blue skies and warm temperatures, the first round of the CGA State Junior Championship got underway at CommonGround Golf Course, home of the Colorado Golf Association. The morning rounds saw calm conditions while the afternoon rounds were on the breezier side.

Gavin Amella of Castle Rock led the morning round with a five-under-par 66, saying that he was dropping putts left and right on his way to the top of the leaderboard, but fell into a sticky situation or two along the way, too.

“I had a few bogeys, I think four bogeys, but I recovered well,” Amella said.

Gavin Amella

AJ Sweeney of Commerce City caught up to Amella in the afternoon after eagling the par five number eleven but would lose momentum, finishing the round with a four-under-par 67. As it stands, Sweeney is in a three-way tie for second with Charlie Tucker of Castle Pines and Mathieu Zerwin of Lafayette.

Elle Higgins of Centennial leads the girls’ field at five-under-par 66, having also eagled the par-five number eleven. Behind Higgins in second is Addison Hines of Arvada who shot a four-over-par 75. In third is Zoe Bar-Or of Greenwood Village who shot a five-over-par 76.

Higgins said that she has played at CommonGround at least five times, with the familiarity with the course evidently being to her benefit.

“I was hitting it really close,” she said. “I hit it two feet [to the pin] probably five times. That part was easy for me to make the putt.”

Elle Higgins

The final round of stroke will conclude tomorrow and the top 32 boys and girls will advance to a single-elimination match which will begin on Wednesday. The championship finals will be Friday afternoon.