Aotea student’s golf crown
Aotea College’s Daniel Hillier was crowned the national men’s amateur golf champion in Auckland on Sunday.
It was the battle of the teens in the final at Titirangi, as 16- year- old Hillier beat Sam Vincent, 17, of Lochiel, 6 and 5.
Hillier trailed for two holes against Vincent but took a 3- up lead into the lunch break.
He extended that to four on the first hole of the afternoon round. Hillier made only one bogey in the afternoon, shutting out Vincent.
‘‘I felt my whole game was solid this week,’’ he said.
‘‘I holed some good shots and hit some really good iron shots, but it was really more a mindset of taking it one shot at a time and putting pressure on my opponents consistently throughout the match that really helped me get the results this week.’’
While Hillier was dominant in his final, his fellow Manor Park clubmate Julianne Alvarez, 18, had to fight the entire way in hers, defeating Alanna Campbell of Omanu on the 36th hole.
Of her national No 1 ranking Alvarez said, ‘‘ It’s something I’ve always aimed for. I’ve been working at it for a long time and things are coming into fruition.
‘‘It sits well with me – it’s where I want to be, it feels good.’’
Alvarez and Hillier share the same coach, Kevin Smith.
New Zealand Golf confirmed the combined ages of the two men’s finalists – 33 years – was the youngest in the competition’s history.
Daniel Hillier is now a national champion.