Defending champions Schalk, Bryant atop leaderboards at Colorado Junior PGA
by Gary Baines
A year after Davis Bryant of Aurora and Hailey Schalk of Erie won the Colorado Junior PGA Championship, guess who’s on top in the boys and girls division of the 2018 tournament?
That would be Bryant and Schalk.
Bryant, the Junior Golf Alliance of Colorado Boys Player of the Year in 2017, expanded his already-formidable lead in the first JGAC major of the year to eight strokes after Tuesday’s second round at Eisenhower Golf Club’s Blue Course at the Air Force Academy.
And Schalk (pictured), the JGAC Girls Player of the Year in 2017, grabbed the lead on Tuesday from Bryant’s little sister, Emma. Schalk will take a three-stroke advantage into Wedneday’s final round.
Davis Bryant backed up his first-round 68 with a 3-under-par 69 on Tuesday to check in at 7-under 137 for two days. The Colorado State University-bound golfer made four birdies and one bogey on day 2.
University of Denver recruit Calvin McCoy of Highlands Ranch posted a 70 on Tuesday and holds second place at 145 after a five-birdie, three-bogey day. Kailer Rundiks of Denver and U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier Jack Castiglia of Lakewood share third place at 148, with Castiglia firing a 73 on Tuesday and Rundiks a 75.
In the girls division, Schalk shot a 5-over-par 77 on Tuesday, which left the two-time 3A girls state high school champion at 7-over 151. The 16-year-old made two birdies, five bogeys and a double bogey on Tuesday.
Emma Bryant, the 5A girls state high school champ who made a hole-in-one on Monday, posted an 81 on Tuesday to leave herself three behind Schalk. Also at that 154 figure and tied for second is Caroline Jordaan of Lakewood, the 2015 Colorado Junior PGA girls champ, who carded a second-round 79. Lauren Lehigh of Loveland, the 2017 4A girls state high school winner, is in fourth place at 156 after a 77 on Tuesday.
The boys field was cut to the low 30 players and the girls to 16 heading into the final round.
In addition to the Colorado Junior PGA Championship titles being on the line, the top two boys finishers and the top two girls will earn spots in the national Junior PGA Championship that will be held in Kentucky. The national girls tournament is set for July 9-12 and the boys for July 31-Aug. 3.