GGGA students Hsu, Cardenas win PJT ChampionsGate

A win Sunday at the PJT at ChampionsGate was purely up for grabs.

After a 3-under 69, GGGA student Raymond Abels, of USA, led the way but just one shot back was Johnny Hsu, of Taiwan, with a crowd of other juniors with their eyes on a victory.

In the Girls 14-19 Division, Isabella Cardenas, of Colombia, was also in the mix but Chiara Arya grabbed the lead after the first round with a 1-under 71.

Cardenas got off to a flawless start and was 3 under through 11 holes. After a par at No. 12, bogeys at Nos. 13 and 15 had her trailing Arya again. But on No. 18, Cardenas struck for a clutch eagle at the par 5 closing hole to force a playoff and would later top Arya in the sudden death match for the victory.

Over in the Boys 15-19 Division, there wasn’t near as much separation at the top. Just five shots separated the leader from the next ten players hoping to claim the win.

Hsu and Abels were one and two heading into the final round but fellow GGGA students Adam Friedman, Force Choi, Inigo Glagovsky and Conor Mead were lurking.

Much like Cardenas, Hsu rose to the challenge in the big moment as he birdied his final hole of the day to close with a two-day of Even par 144 for the one shot win over Choi with Glagovsky, Abels and Mead also tying for 4th at 4 over 148.