Barbados national junior champion Iz Hustler and four other regional players were chasing Aaron Jarvis of the Cayman Islands after the first round of the 2016 Caribbean Junior Golf Championships.
Playing at the Barbados Golf Club, at Durants today, Jarvis shot an impressive two-over-par 74 in the boys’ 14-15 age group to emerge the early leader in what is shaping to be perhaps the most competitive division of the championships.
Jarvis leads the field by two strokes, ahead of Seibert Walker of Jamaica who shot 76, Hustler of Barbados who shot 77, Melvin Morales of Puerto Rico ( 77) and Trinidadian Brian Matabatal (78). They were just off the pace in windy conditions over the first 18 holes where Ho Jin-Kang of the Dominican Republic also posted 79.
Current Trinidad Open senior champion Sachin Kumar immediately stamped his authority on the championships in the 16-17 division as he posted a two-under 70, the best score of the first round.
That was seven strokes better than the 77 returned by Lucas Hernandez of the Dominican Republic and a similar score from Puerto Rico’s Alejandro Toro in the same catergory. Barbadian Christian Mason and Puerto Rican Mitzel Chevres also kept themselves among the contenders with scores of 80.
Among the girls, Jamaican Tiana Cruz and Puerto Rico’s Valeria Pacheco were locked in first position in the 16-17 age group after they each posted a competitive 75 and were seeking to stave off the Trinidadian pair of Serena Mackenzie (78) and Sabrina Mitchell (79), who seemed to be positioning themselves to make a charge for the title. Another Jamaican, Hanah Foster posted 78 in the 14-15 group and was followed by Haylie Turnquest of the Bahamas with 81.
Justin Hastings (71) and Aaron Jarvis (74) of the Cayman Islands were leading the boy’s under-13 divison while Sophie Anand of Bahamas, with 86, and Brooke Rivers (85) of Turks & Caicos (85) were the leaders in the girls category.
Second round play in the regional championships will be staged tomorrow at the Barbados Golf Club where players will be seeking to improve their individual scores, which will also contribute to overall team scores.
Puerto Rico are the defending team champions, in the 29th edition of the annual tournament staged under the auspices of the Caribbean Golf Association, and teams from Trinidad and Tobago, Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Bahamas, USVI, Turks & Caicos and the Dominican Republic and hosts Barbados.