Scott Kim Defeats Will Bernstein to Win 95th Met Junior
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ST. JAMES, N.Y. (July 20, 2012) - Scott Kim of River Edge, N.J., took the old tournament adage of "survive and advance" and used it to beat out 63 of the best Met Area juniors, including Will Bernstein of New York, N.Y., in the finals to claim the 95th Met Junior Championship sponsored by MetLife at Nissequogue Golf Club in St. James, N.Y. Kim won six matches, only two which went to the 18th hole, on his way to capturing the first victory of his young career. But it wasn't that easy.
Along with the driving rain and gusty conditions, Kim stormed out of the gates bogey-bogey-double bogey, and immediately found himself 3-down. But a par on the par-4 5th and tap-in birdie on the short par-4 6th got him back to 1-down, and after Bernstein bogeyed the par-4 8th, the match was once again all square.
“I was 3-down after three and it felt like I was going to lose, but I just hung in there and played my game,” Kim said. “Will’s a strong player and I'm just glad I was able to beat him.”
Bernstein, who recently won the 2012 LIGA Junior Championship, never seemed to have his putting stroke throughout the match. The 16-year-old recorded 33 putts through 16 holes, but did manage to make a crucial left-to-right slider on the par-5 16th hole for birdie. However, Kim answered with a 5-foot birdie of his own giving him the 3 & 2 victory.
“I had about four or five three-putts so my putting kind of went away,” Bernstein said. “And then Scott just played solid all day. He hit a lot of fairways, a lot of greens, and a lot of putts. He was tough to beat.”
The par-72, 6,602 yard track on Long Island's north shore provided a demanding test for the players on Friday. Difficult weather conditions had Kim and Bernstein constantly making adjustments. After his rough start, Kim, 18, played his remaining 10 holes at 1-under par, failing to record a single bogey. Both players will return to MGA competition on August 1st with the Carter Cup at storied Baltusrol Golf Club.
The Met Junior is the oldest junior championship in the nation, and the first time Nissequogue has hosted the event since 1978. It will be held next year at Fairview Country Club in Greenwich, Conn., from July 15-18.