Photos by John Patota and Melissa Schaub
Jonathan Griz got the Putter Boy trophy on Wednesday.
He may have actually won it on Tuesday.
Griz, of Hilton Head, SC, and one of the top junior golfers in the Carolinas, shot a 1-under 71 on Pinehurst No. 8 on Wednesday to wrap up a four-shot victory over Durham’s Clayson Good to win the 42nd Boys Junior North & South Amateur.
But it was 16-year-old’s 4-under-par round of 66 on Pinehurst No. 2 on Tuesday that put him in the driver’s seat and on his way to having his name emblazoned in bronze on the Perpetual Wall in the Pinehurst clubhouse.
“I feel like I really won the tournament after the round on No. 2,” said Griz, who is committed to play for Alabama. “It was just a special round of golf where everything felt flawless.”
The rest of the week wasn’t bad, either. Griz opened with a round of 70 on No. 6 before taking a two-shot lead entering the final round following that 66 on No. 2.
Griz had not won since August 2019, his game falling into a bit of a drought. But a few swing changes in the early part of 2020 paid off handsomely this week.
“I can’t even put this into words,” he said. “Just to think that my name will be up there for the rest of my lifetime is truly special.”
Junior North & South Amateur Champions Jonathan Griz and Amanda Sambach
Amanda Sambach still has more work to do in Pinehurst, even after winning the 42nd Girls Junior North & South Amateur.
Tied with two others at 1 under to lead the tournament entering the final round on Pinehurst No. 6, Sambach made six birdies on her way to a 68 to win by four shots over Sydney Yermish, of Havertown, PA.
The Davidson native is ranked 5th in junior golf, and is among the top 30 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. And while winning this week was great, she’s also in the field for next week’s Women’s North & South Amateur, one of the most elite women’s amateur tournaments in the country.
“This means a lot,” said Sambach, 17, who has won four times since November 2018, including the 2018 Rolex Tournament of Champions. “It gives me a lot of confidence heading into next week.”
Sambach has committed to play golf for Virginia.