A pair of teenage golf stars who last season led the PHS team to a state runner-up finish turned in top 10 showings in one of the state’s most prestigious summer tournaments.
Competing July 24-25 in the PING Arizona Junior Masters at Arizona State University Karsten Golf Course in Tempe, Tyler Apps finished sixth and former PHS teammate Jeffrey Kelley was seventh.
On the 6,826-yard, par 70 course, Apps carded a 151 (75 and 76) and Kelley posted a 152 (75 and 77). The pair were competing in the boys 15-18-years age division.
A field of 27 qualifiers, many of them the finest young golfers in the state, compete in their division of the Junior Masters.
Apps graduated last spring with the PHS class of 2012 and has received both academic and athletic scholarships to Grand Canyon University.
Kelley will return to the Longhorn fold next year as a senior member of a team that loses only two starters and is expected to contend for Division III state honors.
At Payson High, Apps turned in an illustrious career that included finishing first individually at the 2011 North-East 3A regional tournament and being named the team’s most valuable player three consecutive years. He was also a team captain four years and a U.S. Kids World Championship qualifier.
Apps capped his four-year prep varsity golf career in May by finishing as the boys gold medalist in the 2012 Thunderbird High School Senior Classic.
Just weeks ago, Apps learned he had received a $1,500 golf scholarship to Grand Canyon to go along with the $40,000 academic scholarship he received from the school after graduating from PHS.
Kelley’s finest summer showing might have been his fourth-place finish at the Yuma City Championship on May 19-20. He also tied for 11th in the Tucson City championships later that month and was 11th at the Thunderbird Junior Classic on June 13-14.
In 2011 at the Division III state championships, he led all Longhorn players, finishing at 75 on the first round and 76 the second.