Editor’s note: Edmond’s Austin Eckroat was recently named to the USA Today All-USA Boys Golf second team. Click here for more.
TOYOTA CITY, Japan – Austin Eckroat of Edmond played a key role as the United States claimed a nine-shot victory over second place Germany (-27) in the Boys Division of the 2016 TOYOTA Junior Golf World Cup in Toyota City, Aichi-Prefecture, Japan.
It is the Americansâ€™ eighth title but their first since 2005. Thailand took third place at 22-under, two shots clear of Korea and South Africa (-20) – who tied for fourth.
â€œItâ€™s been a long time coming,â€ American captain J.R. Steinbauer said. â€œThey really played their hearts out and never gave up. Iâ€™m very proud of them and – after 10 years – itâ€™s nice to have the trophy again.â€
Chile (-15) used a final round 201 (-12) to jump up to sixth – four strokes ahead of seventh place Sweden (-11). Defending champion Japan (-4) claimed the eighth spot while New Zealand and Norway tied for ninth at 1-under and Canada dropped to 11th at plus-1. Mexico (+11), the Netherlands (+22), Zimbabwe (+23) and Brazil (+37) rounded out the boysâ€™ field.
Chileâ€™s Joaquin Niemann – the 2015 runner-up – shot a tournament record 62 (-9) to claim the Boys Division individual title at 17-under. Dylan Naidoo of South Africa – the leader following the second and third rounds – fell to second place at minus-12.
Eckroat, an Oklahoma State commit who will be a senior at Edmond North this fall, finished in eighth place individually with rounds of 72-65-69-70 to finish at 8-under 276. His future OSU teammate, Matthew Wolff of California, shot 6-under to finish tied for 13th.
In the Girlsâ€™ Division, the United States (-18) shot its second-consecutive 139 to hold off defending champion Japan (-13) and claim its first event championship.
Click here for complete results.