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Wilson clinches WAGA title

Haley Wilson entered the final day of the 2008 Women’s Alabama Golf Association State Junior Championship with a 12-stroke lead over Mobile natives Kristin Warhurst and Gabi Oubre.

The 17-year-old Fort Mitchell native faltered, but maintained her post atop the leader board. After posting score of 73 and 73, she shot an 82 on Wednesday to win by three over Oubre.

“I had two good first rounds then did terrible today,” said Wilson. “I hit my driver good, but I didn’t hit my irons good or putt very well at all.”

The 14-year-old Oubre broke her tie with Warhurst by shooting a 73, and even made a charge for the top spot. Wilson’s lead was simply too much to overcome though.

“I actually had a decent round for once,” said Oubre. “The last two days I haven’t played very well, but I did pretty good today.”

Headed into Wednesday, Wilson knew her lead wasn’t safe. She and Oubre are familiar with each other, and though she has three years on Oubre, Wilson knew her lead was not safe.

“I knew I had to play well with her over there,” said Wilson. “After those first couple of days, I started pressing a little bit.”

Warhurst finished third. Defending State Junior champion, Betsy Birchall (Birmingham), placed fourth.

“I just didn’t play well this week,” said Birchall. “Nothing was really sharp. There wasn’t anything that I could just depend on in my game this week.”

With the tournament completed, Wilson and Oubre remain far from a break.

Both will participate in the 2008 USGA U.S. Girls’ Junior in Hartford, Conn. The tournament takes place at the Hartford Golf Club, July 21-26.

“I’m ready to get up there and see how I can play and play to the best of my ability,” said Wilson.

Oubre is excited about testing her ability as well.

“That’ll be a really good experience to play that level of competition because it’s a really good tournament,” said Oubre. “I’m looking forward to it.”

There is no break following that tournament for either girl though. The next week, both play in the U.S. Women’s Amateur in Eugene, Ore., August 4-10.