MANILA, Philippines - Sam Martirez and Sofia Chabon shot a 69 and 68, respectively, to pace their respective divisions in the FCG International Junior Golf tournament at the Sycuan Oak Glen Course in San Diego, California Monday.
Martirez upstaged fancied ICTSI teammates Princess Superal and Pauline del Rosario with a four-birdie, one-bogey feat at the par-72 layout, giving her a one-stroke lead over Thailand’s Benyapa N., who carded a 70, in the premier 15-17 category.
Del Rosario, priming up for next week’s Junior World, also in San Diego, put herself in early contention with a 71 while Abby Arevalo, another Team ICTSI mainstay, turned in a 73.
Superal, who clinched a berth in the US Girls and US Women’s Amateur recently, struggled with her short game and limped with a 75, dropping to joint 14th, six strokes off Martirez with two rounds left in the 54-hole tournament.
Chabon, who also nailed a berth in the US Girls slated July 21-26 in Arizona, shared the early lead in the 13-14 section with Taiwanese Ya-Chun Chang as the duo fired identical 68s for a two-shot lead over new Team ICTSI member Yuka Saso, who made a 70.
But the 12-year-old Saso, who finished runner-up in last week’s US Gilrs’ qualifier in Marysville. Is expected to bounce back strong in the last two days in a bid to score a follow-up to her runaway victory in the Jakarata Junior World Championship last month.
Mika Fortuna, however, skied to a 79 and stood 11 shots off Chabon.