Friday, July 02, 2010

SPORTS>>Benton makes U.S. Amateur

Leader sports editor

It’s been a busy summer for Cabot junior golfer Colby Benton, and it’s only going to get busier.

Benton shot a 1 over par 145 in the USGA Junior Amateur Qualifying at Hot Springs on Tuesday to earn a berth in the U.S. Junior
Amateur later this month.

Benton carded a 74-71 at the Hot Springs Country Club’s Arlington Course to win one of two available spots to the Junior Amateur to be played July 19-24 at Egypt Valley Country Club in Ada, Mich.

Benton, as well as his sister Kaylee, has already qualified for the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships on July 27-Aug. 1 at the PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

The Junior Amateur will be the first USGA national event for Benton, who finished qualifying five strokes behind winner Reid Holly, of Madison, Miss. Only the top two finishers advance to the Junior Amateur.

Holly shot 69-71—140 to finish 4 under in the rain-plagued event.

Benton shot a 37 on the front nine and 37 on the back to finish the opening round 2 over. He had two bogeys and a birdie while Holly shot an opening-round 67.

That left Benton battling for the final qualifying spot as he had birdies on the second, sixth and eighth holes and a bogey on nine to make the turn even. On the back nine he shot bogies on No. 12 and No. 15 and birdied No. 14.