by Colin McEwen
Hudson -- Those at the 29th Hudson Junior Invitational caught a glimpse of the future of professional golf with some of the best junior golfers from across the country.
Golfers from 14 states, California to Maine, and three countries, Mexico, Canada and Japan, narrowed their sights on the Hudson tournament, from June 20 to 22; and both winners have roots in the community.
Brandon Ellis of Westerville won the boys' tournament, shooting a three-day 220; Allie White of Lancaster won the girls' tournament, shooting 225.
Both of their fathers are from Hudson.
This is White's second time winning the tournament -- and she is only entering her senior year of high school.
"I feel great," she said. "My family is from around here, so this was just great to come here and win."
Ellis, who graduated earlier this month from Columbus DeSales High School, said he was thrilled by his come-from-behind victory.
"I played well, and kept myself out of trouble," said Ellis, who added he would like to someday play professionally. "I'd have to practice hard and work to improve my game."
He wouldn't be the first to win the Hudson Junior Invitational and go on to successful careers. Phil Mickelson and John Daly are among the former Hudson Junior Invitational champions.
White kept her lead through the last rounds and never lost it. She shot 73 in the last round to win the tournament by four shots.
Ellis' rise to the top wasn't as easy.
At the end of the second round June 21, he was tied for fourth place and had to make two difficult putts to finish in first place at the end of the final round.
Ellis' father, Brain, graduated from Hudson High School in 1980, and said watching his son made him nervous.
"I am very proud of him," he said. "I thought I was going to faint; He was so cool -- I didn't need to be."
Hahn falls just short
John Hahn, a recent graduate of Hudson High School, climbed his way back into the tournament to finish second after being seven shots back; but finished with a 1-under-71 to finish at 221.
"The first nine holes, I was not mentally ready," said Hahn, who has committed to play for Kent State University in the fall. "It hurts -- no Hudson kid has ever won this."
Doug Underwood of Stow and Steve Bednar of Munroe Falls tied each other for 33rd place, shooting 234.
After the second round, Underwood was tied for eighth place with a score of 149, which was one stroke ahead of Hahn.
Isaac Charette of Hudson tied for 55th place, shooting a 241 with Stow's Steven Spalding.
Matt Roth of Hudson, tied in for 70th, with a three-day total of 249.
Jake Baranek of Stow finished at 84 with a score of 260; Sean Murphy of Hudson shot a 268 and finished at 85; and Kyle Gerycz of Twinsburg finished at 86, shooting 287.
Maloney places 15th
Shamira Marshall, aMacedonia resident, finished third in the tournament with a three-day total of 236.
Tricia Maloney of Hudson tied for 15th place, shooting a 259, while Paige Caldwell of Hudson shot just behind her finishing in 16th, shooting 261.
Erin Misheff of Silver Lake shot a 277, finishing in 20th place; and Ariel McNair finished in 21st place, shooting a 281.