Baumgart places fourth, leads local golfers at WJGA

Walla Walla's Emily Baumgart, the only local still playing, finishes in fourth place in the WJGA state tournament.

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Tyler Salsbury, the overall winner in the boys 14-17 year old division at the WGJA State Tournament, tees off Friday morning.

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Walla Walla's Emily Baumgart hits a approach shot at the walla walla country during the 2011 WJGA state tournament final round on Friday.

WALLA WALLA - Tyler Salsbury and Catherina Li made their lead after two rounds stand up in final round action here at the 35th annual Washington State Junior Golf Association State Championships.

Salsbury started play Friday at the Walla Walla Country Club with a two-shot lead then saw that evaporate, but came back with an even-par 72 and took the overall boys championship with a three-round total of 210, six shots under par. Shoreline's Chris Babcock came from five shots back to take Friday medalist honors with a final round 68 and move into second place, one shot behind, with a 211 total.

Salsbury, a senior-to-be at Enumclaw who has made an early commitment to the University of Washington golf program, fired rounds of 69, 69, and finished with a 72 to secure the win.

"The final score looked more consistent than the tournament was," Salsbury said. "The first day couldn't have gone much smoother. Then the second day I got off to the fastest start I've ever had. I was six under through nine holes. (But) it was ugly on the back nine and I gave a few back. Today, I went out and tried to keep things smooth, and limit any damage. I did that pretty well."

It wasn't easy for Salsbury, as Redmond's Garrett Foss pulled into a tie for the lead after Salsbury bogeyed the par-3 fourth hole and Foss holed a birdie. Foss moved into the lead with a bird on the par-5 seventh, but Salsbury responded.

"I knew I just had to weather the storm," Salsbury said. "I knew it (the Foss charge) was coming. The way he (Foss) started, I knew birdies were coming. I tried to hit the shots I knew I could hit and play my game."

Foss bogeyed eight and nine while Salsbury closed the front side with pars and regained a one-shot lead at the turn. Salsbury eliminated Foss on the twelfth as Foss earned a par, but Salsbury fired home a birdie to put four strokes between Foss and himself. Salsbury went on to go one under on the back side to finish at even par and claim the boys title.

"On the twelfth hole, Garrett made about a 30-footer," Salsbury said. "I'd knocked it in there about eight feet, and I made mine on top of his (shot). That was a big confidence builder going into the last few holes."

On the girls' side, Li, who opened the tournament with a 75, fired a two-under 70 on Thursday, and went into Friday's final round with a three-stroke lead over Lewiston's Amy Hasenoehrl.

Li carved out a round of four birdies and two bogeys to finish at two-under 70 on the round and pull away from the competition.

Goldendale's Bree Wanderscheid and Auburn's Alexus Song finished in a two-way tie for second at 226, 11 strokes behind Li, as Li completed her rebound from the first round all the way to the girls championship.

"The first round was a little rough," Li said. "The front nine was fine, I was two under. On the back nine, I four putted one (hole) and had three, three-putts from within 10 feet."

With an assist from dad, Li, a sophomore-to-be at Stanwood High School, regrouped.

"I came back here (WW Country Club)," Li said. "I practiced for two hours, but it didn't help much as I was really mad and couldn't let go of my bad shots.

"Then my dad and I re-collected. He said, ‘Golf isn't a game where you can just get angry, you've got to just let it go, and remember there are still two more days.' I put that into thought. The funny thing is that he (dad) told me if I would shoot a pair of 70s, I would win."

Dad knows best as Li finished with a "pair of 70s" and won the title.

"I finished pretty strong," Li concluded. "I'm pretty content with the way I played. This was the third tournament that I've been in the lead, and it felt pretty routine. A year ago, I would've been shaking as I get really nervous, (but this year) I told myself to ‘play my own game and I could win.'"

Walla Walla's only representative to survive the cut and play on the last day was Emily Baumgart in the 12-13 girls division.

Nick Atwood, boys 14-15, shot 164 but it wasn't good enough to make Friday's play. Jessica Huntsman, girls 14-15, fired a 169 over her two rounds and failed to make the cut.

Baumgart, who fired an 86 over Friday's round and coupled with an 81 and 83 to open the tournament, finished with a score of 250. Sarah Lawrence of Duvall captured the 12-13 girls title with a 240.

The weekend marked Baumgart's first time to make the cut and first experience with a three-round tournament.

"In sub-district, you play one round, then in district it's two rounds," Baumgart said. "Three rounds wasn't that bad."

Lawrence fashioned a round of 81 on Friday to squeak out a one-stroke win over second-place Ashley Fitzgibbons, who shot an 82 to finish at 241. Baumgart concluded her tournament with the 86.

"My front nine today was not too good," Baumgart said. "I did better on the back nine. No. 7, on which I hit a really good drive, and No. 16 were my best today."

Baumgart finished her last 12-13 age group tournament with fourth place and will move to the 14-15 age group next season.

"It was fun," the Assumption eighth-grader-to-be concluded. "It was my first time ever to make the cut. I owe thanks to my golf coach (John Thorsnes of Wine Valley), for the guidance, as I practiced from March until now."

In other boys action, Kirkland's Frank Garber finished with a 71 on Friday and a total of 213 to win the boys 14-15 age and finish in a tie for third overall in the boys competition.

Bainbridge Island's Sam Warkentin finished at 222 to edge Vancouver's Spencer Tibbits by one shot in the boys 12-13 race.

Tacoma's Joe Highsmith fashioned a 150 to win the boys 8-11 division.

In the 16-17 girls play, Song's 226 total took first place in the division, and a tie for second to Li overall.

Overlake's Abigal Euyang shot 165 over three days to claim first in the girls 8-11 group.

WJGA State Championships

Final Results

Boys 16-17 Division

Tyler Salsbury, Enumclaw 69-69-72-210

Chris Babcock, Shoreline 71-72-68-211

Li Wang, Sammamish 72-71-70-213

Zack Spencer, Mead 70-73-72-215

Kelly Campbell, Auburn 73-72-71-216

James Feutz, Tacoma 70-74-72-216

Anthony Allen, Everett 75-72-70-217

Charlie Kern, West Seattle 70-74-74-218

Michael Almonte, Fircrest 69-72-77-218

Tye Morrison, Spokane 75-74-70-219

Kyle Cornett, Mill Creek 74-76-70-220

Chris Tedesco, Gig Harbor 69-74-77-220

Ryan Books, Seattle 76-72-73-221

Garrett Foss, Redmond 73-67-81-221

Brennan Emory, Mount Vernon 70-75-77-222

David Won, Everett 75-73-74-222

Ryan Wallen, Blaine 74-75-73-222

Cooper Wright, Moscow, Idaho 75-72-75-222

Samson Martinez, Pasco 76-74-75-225

Oliver Rudnicki, Woodinville 81-68-78-227

Boys 14-15 Division

Frank Garber, Kirkland 72-70-71-213

Brian Mogg, Sammamish 75-70-71-216

Michael Baldeck, Clarkston 70-72-76-218

Nolan Cull, Lake Tapps 73-73-72-218

Joe Harvie, Orting 72-75-72-219

Gregory Gildea, Vashon 79-70-72-221

Brian Moon, Mukilteo 70-77-75-222

Eric Ansett, Spokane 75-74-74-223

Chase Carlson, Tacoma 74-76-76-226

Spencer Weiss, Sammamish 75-75-77-227

Stephen Roller, Hayden, Idaho 73-77-77-227

Brendan McCauley, Olympia 77-75-76-228

Aubrey MacKenzie, Poulsbo 76-76-76-228

Eugene Wackerbarth, Clyde Hill 75-71-83-229

Tanner Kovacevich, Edgewood 76-77-76-229

Brett Manke, Tacoma 74-79-77-230

Aaron Whalen, Ephrata 78-74-78-230

Ahren Young, Renton 75-78-78-231

Kenny Dodge, Post Falls, Idaho 78-75-79-232

Tanner Comes, Spokane 78-73-82-233

Boys 12-13 Division

Sam Warkentin, Bainbridge Island 76-72-74-222

Spencer Tibbits, Vancouver 74-74-75-223

Vincent Vu, Auburn 76-77-72-225

Grant Cole, Redmond 76-77-74-227

John Sand, Grays Harbor 77-73-78-228

Zachary Evens, Mercer Island 78-78-79-235

Travis Kay, Ellensburg 73-79-83-235

Kenneth Sheldon, Ocean Park 78-80-80-238

Joseph Baldeck, Clarkston 78-80-82-240

Boys 8-11 Division

9 Holes

Joe Highsmith, Tacoma 38-39-73-150

Alvin Kwak, Snohomish 38-37-80-155

ian Siebers, Bellevue 39-39-81-159

Connor Golembeski, Redmond 41-39-80-160

Ryan Park, Bellevue 39-41-82-162

Dylan Bissell, Yakima 39-42-82-163

Nathan Cogswell, Kent 43-39-81-163

Sean Kato, Redmond 43-39-82-164

Colt Sherrell, Maple Valley 40-42-85-167

Ryan Feyrer, Lacey 40-41-89-170

Parker Kneadler, Maple Valley 43-39-96-178

Girls 16-17 Division

Alexus Song, Auburn 80-73-73-226

Kassidy Long-Goheen, Gig Harbor 82-72-79-233

Savana Bezdicek, Colbert 74-77-85-236

Amanda Beyke, Federal Way 81-78-78-237

Taylor Anderson, Moscow, Idaho 84-75-79-238

Sammie Pless, West Seattle 82-77-86-245

Jessica Kent, Bellevue 84-75-87-246

Girls 14-15 Division

Catherina Li, Kent 75-70-70-215

Bree Wanderscheid, Goldendale 73-76-77-226

Amy Hasenoehrl, Lewiston, Idaho 72-76-82-230

Oliva Benzin, Tacoma 78-78-79-235

Marianne Li, Bellevue 76-78-84-238

Alivia Brown, Gig Harbor 76-81-82-239

Girls 12-13 Division

Sarah Lawrence, Duvall 81-78-81-240

Ashley Fitzgibbons, Sammamish 81-78-82-241

Sarah Rhee, Seattle 78-83-83-244

Emily Baumgart, Walla Walla 81-83-86-250

Girls 8-11 Division

Abigail Euyang, Seattle 41-40-84-165

Kenedee Peters, Olympia 46-47-84-177

Gabrielle Ferreira, University Place 48-44-91-183

Brittany Kwon, Silverdale 46-48-93-187

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