2021 Season Opener at Twin Lakes
Washington DC Junior Golf Classic
Centreville, Virginia, March 15th, 2021 — It was BJGT’s 2021 Season Opener this weekend at Twin Lakes Golf Course-Oaks. The winds were blowing early in March at this beautiful American style golf course. Read below to see some of the highlights from this past weekend’s tournament!
Round 1 – Saturday, March 13th — Saturday’s weather was a clear signal that the Golf Season has begun. The Temperatures sat around the High 50’s most of the day with partly cloudy skies, perfect weather for the first tournament of the year!
The older boys had a rough start to the day. The toughest hole on the course for the Boys 15-19 Division in Round 1 was the Par-4, 2nd-Hole. Hopefully you warmed up on the range because Twin Lakes-Oaks does you no favors starting you out with 2 of the top 4 hardest holes on the course. Hole-2 is a bear of a Par-4, playing 467-Yards from our Buckeye-Black Tees. A drive with a carry of at least 220-Yards is needed to clear the water hazard that sits directly in your way. The fairway is large, so really you just have to play for distance off the tee. Next you have to climb a giant hill to reach the green on this hole, which may add 10-20 yards depending on where your tee shot landed. A huge bunker sits on the left-side of the hole guarding the green so playing the hole to the right is the best option. None of the 24 players were able to earn anything better than Bogey on this monster, a truly staggering stat. By the end of the round everyone must have been feeling pretty good because hole-18 played the easiest for the Boys 15-19 in Round 1. A welcoming sight at the end of any round has to be the chance to Eagle the 18th-Hole. The only real trouble is a pond that sits off to the right of the fairway and the two small bunkers guarding the left side of the green. A plethora of Birdies were earned from the field as the groups marched in. Benjamin Chamberlin from Germantown, Maryland ended the 2020 Season with a win and he wanted to make sure everyone knew he kept his form in the off-season by leading Round 1 with a 76. He was followed closely behind by BJGT staple E. Alexander Brooks from Hyattsville, Maryland.
The next group off the tee was the Girls 14-19 Division. They had trouble with the long 370-yard, Par-4, 7th-hole. Hole-7 is weird. The slightest of dog-legs can be confusing for players that are not familiar with the course, which most were not. Although it looks as though the dog-leg plays an extra 10-20 yards, it is actually deceiving and really only adds about 5. The entire hole is tree-lined on either side with a small creek that runs inside some of this penalty area. The fallen leaves leftover from last season were swallowing up golf balls all day. Akshitha Vemuru from Herndon, Virginia and Alana Alexander-Giles from Marriottsville, Maryland both escaped with Bogeys on the hole to lead the Division. A couple of holes later, Hole-9 played the easiest for the Girls in Round 1. This is a drivable Green. This Short Par-4 (also our Player of the year sponsor) played a short 267-Yards from our Buckeye-White Tees. Hole-9’s only defense is a fairway bunker off to the left side sitting about 180-Yards up. Alana, Akshitha and Asada Vactor from Silver Spring, Maryland were all able to pick up well-deserved Pars. Akshitha Vemuru put together an extremely impressive card of 77 of to lead her Division. She was followed closely behind my Alana Alexander-Giles with an 81.
Last, but not least, our Younger Boys 10-14 Division arrived on the scene. Let’s jump ahead to Hole-16, another long Par-4 at 387-Yards. This hole played the toughest for our Boys 10-14 in Round 1. This dog-leg is not as deceiving as Hole-7 and plays around an extra 30 yards. You can really only play this hole from the right side as the 4 Fairway Bunkers that strafe the left-side make for an extremely difficult landing zone. There is also a huge bunker that sits on the left side of the green. Club up and take the long way around! Dylan Ramsey, 2020 BJGT Tour Championship Winner, from Lebanon, Pennsylvania picked up at least 1 stroke on the rest of the field by being the only player to simply Bogey the hole. Great course management Dylan. Hole-11 one of the easiest holes on the course and stayed true playing as the easiest hole for the Boys 10-14 in Round 1. Yet another tough dog-leg, this hole requires accuracy with it being so short. The trick is to either play a fade into the fairway or just lay up in the landing zone to give yourself an easy approach onto the green. Jesse Shue, BJGT 2020 Player of the Year Winner and certified Birdie Machine, picked up his 3rd Birdie of the day on this hole to lead the Division. Mr. Consistent Dylan Ramsey lost nothing in the off-season and lead the Division with the overall best score of the round, 75! Player of the Week Alexander McClain followed closely behind Dylan, carding an extremely impressive 77.
Round 2 – Sunday, March 14th – Round 2 – Sunday, March 14th – Hang on to something! Plenty of sunshine with 30 MPH plus wind gusts, not ideal for any golfer. Accuracy was the name of the game in Round 2.
The younger boys division lead the charge on Sunday, Round 2. It took most of the day, but they found their biggest challenge on the final stretch, Hole-16. Alexander McClain was the only player in the Division to pick up a Par on this hole in Round-2 gaining at least 2-strokes on the rest of the field which was vital to his victory. The Buckeye-White Tees must have been playing extremely easy on Hole-9 because the Boys 10-14 played it the best in Round 2. Alexander was on absolute fire in Round 2, being the only player to Birdie the hole. Alexander McClain and Dylan Ramsey were battling it out all-day but it was Alexander that claimed the Champion Flag. Alexander has been a staple on the BJGT since last season and he continues to improve each and every tournament. When he is on his game, he is one of the hardest players to beat. He takes a lot of pride in his game and holds himself accountable for mistakes but stays cool when he knows he’s rolling. Alexander was absolutely crushing it off the tee this weekend leading to him leading the Par-5 Leaderboard by 5-strokes. Congratulations on another trophy flag Alexander! Dylan Ramsey earned himself a Runner-Up, what else can we say about Dylan. He gave us the greatest finish in BJGT history in 2020 at the Tour Championship. He drives, chips and putts with the best of them and is a favorite playing partner for everyone in his Division. Dylan led his Division in Pars, 18 and was extremely accurate the entire tournament playing the Par-3’s at 1-Over.Congratulations on another great finish Dylan! We can’t forget to mention Jesse Shue’s Eagle on Hole-3 from 75 yards out. It was all the boys talked about when I checked in on them a couple of holes later, great chip-in Jesse!
Second off the tee was our Older Girls Division. In a strange turn of events, the Girls 14-19 Division had the most trouble with the 8 handicap Hole-4 in Round 2. No one scored better than a bogey in the entire division. On the contrary, the Girls absolutely crushed Hole-9, playing it the best in Round 2. The average was brought down by a Birdie from Alana Alexander-Giles. A huge comeback was mounted by Alana in Round 2, leading to a playoff between her and Ashitha Vemuru. The Girls played Hole-15, an extremely long Par-3, as the Playoff-Hole. The wind was blowing like crazy and both girls landed to the right of the green. Both girls chipped on leaving 10’ plus par putts. Alana kept her cool and drilled her putt to save Par to take the Championship Flag! Alana used her accuracy in Round 2 during the Wind Storm to lead herself to the win. She played the Par-3’s the best. Alana also took advantage of the easier Front-9 leading the Division by 4-strokes over the nearest Competitor. Congratulations on a great early season victory Alana! Akshitha Vemuru was extremely strong throughout the entire tournament, earning herself a Runner-Up Finish. Akshitha lead the Division in Pars. Another important stat that we always see in the victory cirlcle was playing the Par 4’s the best, which she did. Congratulations on a Runner-Up finish in your first BJGT tourney Akshitha!
Last but not least, the Older Boys Division took the tee. Halfway through their round, the older Boys made the turn and those crazy winds started and never stopped. Hole-10 had the highest average score in Round 2. Hole-10 claims the 3rd-Handicap at Twin Lakes-Oaks. The water hazard sits 288-yards off the tee and makes for an awkward choice on whether to lay-up for try to clear it. Unfortunately, some wrong choices were made. Adam Green from Freeland, Maryland and Mac Arida, Baltimore Junior Golf Shootout Runner-Up from 2020, from Gambrills, Maryland picked up at least one stroke on the rest of the Field with their Pars. A forgotten Hole, Hole-4, was the easiest for the Boys 15-19 in Round 2. A wicked dog-leg that adds 30-yards requires an accurate tee shot. Additional defense is provided by a bunker that sits on the left-side of the fairway, but it’s in the perfect area to land a tee-shot. Tons of shots in Round 1 landed here but it would appear that most the of the players learned in Round 2. Teddy Ross, Runner-Up in the Washington DC Junior Championship in 2020, from Alexandria, Virginia pulled off a miraculous Birdie gaining at least one stroke on the rest of the field. Landon “L-Train” Leatherman was the conqueror of the elements in Round 2. Landon was the only player in Boys 15-19 to Card a Round in the 70’s leading himself to a Champion Finish! A favorite of the BJGT Staff, Landon has been chasing a win on tour for a long time and it was great to see him start 2021 off right. Landon led the Division with the Most Pars or Better, with 19. Landon’s accuracy was in full force going 1-over on the Par-3’s, another stat category leader. Landon was playing the much easier Front-9 the best by 4-Strokes over his closest competitor. Dad Steve Leatherman was extremely proud of the win, Congratulations Double L! Argyle Downes came in as the Division Runner-Up. Argyle is a new face on tour in 2021 and what a great way to start his BJGT Career. Argyle made the trip all the way from Charles Town, West Virginia. Argyle used his long-drive to lead himself to the Runner-Up finish, absolutely dominating the Par-5’s and going 1-over on them throughout the tournament. Congratulations on your second-place finish and welcome to the tour Argyle!
What a great way to start the 2021 Season! We saw so many familiar faces and tons of new ones this past weekend. We have big things planned for this season and look forward to another great season. We want to thank the wonderful staff out at Twin Lakes Golf Course including Kirk Mason and Kara Spain for always allowing us to use them as host course and helping us to run such a great event. We also want to thank all the Players that came out and battled the elements, especially in Round 2. As always, we want thank our parents and spectators for supporting our tour and helping us grow, especially in the Mid-Atlantic area. We could not do this without your support and we hope to offer all of our junior golfers reasonably priced, great courses and great quality junior golf tour experience. If you do not follow us on Instagram please give us a follow, @buckeyejrgolftour, we post a ton of pictures of our players on there and will post any photos you tag us in from our events.