By Sofia Pettersson, Communications Intern
The second day of the 2014 Wyndham Cup began with 10 foursome matches. The East, who captured an 8-7 lead after Day One, extended their lead to 14-11 after winning six morning matches.
Future college rivals
The second group of the day featured future college teammates and their future SEC rivals. The East’s Shannon Brooks (2015 grad) and Anna Newell (2014 grad), will compete at the University of Tennessee, while the West’s Lakareber Abe (2014 grad) and Kristen Gillman (2016 grad) will compete for the University of Alabama. Today, Brooks and Newell foreshadowed the future of the Vols women’s golf team by winning 5 and 3. The East held a 3-up lead after both teams birdied No. 13. The pair then parred No. 14 to go dormie and closed out the match with a par on No. 15 to capture the first East point of the day.
“Today was a lot of fun! We got along great and I’m looking forward to all the great years ahead of us,” Newell said. “The fact that we were playing against future conference rivals didn’t affect us. We just tried to focus on hitting good shots and winning holes.”
“I have played with Lakareber many times, but we have actually never been on the same team so it was a lot of fun,” Gillman said. “Unfortunately, we didn’t get the win but it was a good match.”
Final putt decision
The East’s Doug Ghim and Qi Wen Wong defeated George Cunningham and Joshua Seiple in a nail-biter that lasted all the way to the last putt. The East was 3-up on No. 15 to go dormie, but the West made a run for the half point by birding No. 16, followed by a par on the par-3 No. 17 to keep the match alive until the final hole. The West split No. 18 fairway in half, while the East, shaken by the West’s momentum changer, found the tall grass off the tee. On the green, Seiple was left with an eight-foot putt to halve the match but he barely missed, leaving Wong a downhill seven-footer to clinch the East point, extending the squad’s lead to 10-7.
The big-names match
Paired together in the fifth match of the day were some of the most experienced players in junior golf. Benjamin Griffin, champion of the 2013 Rolex Tournament of Champions and two-time Wyndham Cup participant, teamed up with Andy Zhang, the 2014 Thunderbird International Junior champion and the youngest player to ever compete in the U.S. Open, to take on the West’s Sam Burns and Brad Dalke. Burns, who recently won the 2014 Rolex Tournament of Champions after firing a record 21-under-par 267, and four-time West team member Dalke, who holds three Invitational titles, grabbed a lead on No. 1 that they never let go, winning 3 and 2.
The afternoon will continue with five mixed four-ball matches. Follow FJ Live Scoring here.