Boys Junior PGA Championship: Jake Beber-Frankel leads by two shots

David Dusek/Golfweek

Boys Junior PGA Championship: Jake Beber-Frankel leads by two shots

Junior

Boys Junior PGA Championship: Jake Beber-Frankel leads by two shots

By

WINDSOR, Conn. – As 65s go, the one shot by Jake Beber-Frankel on Thursday at Keney Park Golf Course in the third round of the Boys Junior PGA Championship was almost disappointing.

“I never had to bounce back from a 60 before,” he said standing beside the 18th green after signing his scorecard. Beber-Frankel torched Keney Park on Wednesday by shooting a 10-under par round to move into second place after 36 holes of play.

“It was a fun experiment to see what would happen,” he added. “I would have taken 5 under at the beginning of the day, but it wasn’t like I did a lot of special things today. I also missed two 3-footers on the back nine, so …”

A day after thunderstorms softened the course, scoring conditions were perfect. The air was warm and there was almost no wind.

SCORES: Boys Junior PGA Championship

Beber-Frankel wasted no time making birdies. He drove the green on the 330-yard, par-4 first hole to set up a first, then hit a driver and a 7-iron to reach the 508-yard, par-5 second hole and set up another. At that point, the lead at the Boys Junior PGA Championship was his.

After a birdie at the fifth pushed his score to 16 under, his tee shot on the seventh went right into a bare area under a tree. He topped his recovery shot and the ball bounded into a fairway bunker 60 yards from the green. That led to a bogey, but two holes later he got that shot back.

“On nine, I thought to myself, ‘Well, the putter isn’t really working, so how good it would be to hit to like, a foot,'” Beber-Frankel said. “And then I hit it to about two inches.”

After a tap-in birdie, Beber-Frankel made the turn in 32 and shot 33 on the back nine to finish the day at 18 under. He is two shots ahead of Canon Claycomb (Bowling Green, Ky.), who led after the first two rounds and shot 68 Thursday. They will be in the last group to tee off Friday morning and joined by Andy Mao (Johns Creek, Ga.), who is at 15 under.

Beber-Frankel, who is 17 and committed to playing college golf at Stanford, lives in Miami. He typically plays courses that are 7,200 to 7,300 yards long, but with Keney Park playing to about 6,400 yards, he knows that he needs to go low again in the final round Friday if he wants to win.

“I knew there were going to be low scores because of the length of the course,” he said. “I have to go really low tomorrow. I had a five-shot lead on Canon with two holes left, made one bogey and now I have a two-shot lead. I think birdies are going to be flying.”

Latest

More Golfweek
Home