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Erickson wins Piedmont Junior Golf title

Emily Erickson, of Prince Edward, established a tradition of success this summer in Piedmont Virginia State Golf Association (VSGA) Junior Golf tournaments, and she capped off this series of competitions by winning the girls 14- to 17-year-old division of the Piedmont Junior Championship on July 27 at Amelia Golf & Country Club.

“I felt really good about my performance,” she said Wednesday. “I felt like I was hitting the ball really well that day, and everything just clicked.”

The 15-year-old Erickson shot a one-under-par 71, and she was the only golfer at the event — female or male — to produce an 18-hole score that was under par.

“I was hitting my irons really well,” she said. “I was getting it close to the pin. I made the putts. I had a lot of par putts, and I had some birdie putts that I needed to make, and I did, and just pars and birdies were the main thing of the day.”

The highlight of the strong round came on No. 2 where at 124 yards using an 8-iron she hit a hole-in-one, the second one she has ever hit.

“It meant so much,” she said of the ace. “It’s like a dream come true to get a hole-in-one, but to get one during a tournament made it even better.”

Erickson said that after the ace, she probably added three or four birdies throughout the rest of the round.

“This is definitely my best performance at Amelia,” she said.

She estimated that she played in five Piedmont VSGA Junior Golf tournaments this summer, winning her division in the Farmville event and in the Crewe event.

Erickson began playing golf when she was 7 years old, and she has been playing competitively since that time as well.

The story of how she got into the sport is a bit different from the one many golfers have, as no one in particular actively encouraged her to pick it up.

“It was actually out of my own interest,” she said. “One of my dad’s friends took me to the driving range one day just to watch him hit some golf balls, and I fell in love with it.”

She plays for Fuqua School’s coed golf team, which has its regular season in the spring.

“But throughout the year, I play in college prep tournaments and VSGA tournaments all around the state,” Erickson said.

Other Junior Division winners at the Piedmont Championship included Evan Mason, who won the boys 16- to 17-year-old division with a 74, Jackson Moseley, who won the boys 14-15 division with an 80, and Hogan Whitlow, who won the boys 12-13 division with an 84.

In the Youth Division, which featured golfers playing nine-hole rounds, Lindsey Towery won the girls 11-13 division with a 51, Will Johnson won the boys 10-11 division with a 43, Mary Katelyn Hite won the girls 7-10 division with a 41 and Jackson Allgood won the boys 7-9 division with a 49.

Others to place in the boys 16-17 division were Logan Newcomb (second with an 82), Skylar Lacks (third with an 89), Nathan Towery (fourth with a 90) and Sage Kallam (fifth with a 91). Earning placement in the girls 14-17 division were Alexandra Turney (second with 90) and Kelsey Moseley (third with a 94).

Among the top finishers in the boys 14-15 division were Cole Williams (second with an 87), Larkin Jackson (third with a 90), Brenden Francisco (fourth with a 104), Robert Raymond (fifth with a 108) and Wesley Crump (sixth with a 115). Others to place in the boys 12-13 division were Thomas Bryant (second with a 93), Michael Ward (third with a 122) and Calvin Foster (fourth with a 139).

The girls 11-13 division results also included Rahilly Abernathy (second with a 63) and Emma Lewis (third with a 71). Earning placement in the boys 10-11 division were J.D. Cunningham (second with a 45), Robert Hite (third with a 50), Benjamin Hite (fourth with a 51) and Bryson Francisco (fifth with a 52).

The girls 7-10 division results also included Kelsey Carter (second with a 52) and Olivia Lynch (third with a 78). Others to place in the boys 7-9 division were Parker Hite (second with a 50), Carsten Beck (third with a 52), Levi Winfree (fourth with a 56) and Luke O’Kelly (fifth with a 58).