RTJ Capitol Hill – September 19, 2021

With the tournament adjusted to 36-holes due to weather, back-to-back 6-under par 66’s was all Janie Jackson (Huntsville, Alabama) needed to claim her second win on the Road to the LPGA. Jackson’s win at the Guardian Championship was a special one, as she felt at home all week, from those cheering her on to knowing the course.

“It feels really special. This is a golf course I’ve played on pretty much since I was a little girl. I kinda know it like the back of my hand. I love being here and seeing some of the people who work here, they feel like family. This one is really special, and I am happy to have it under the belt as well,” said Jackson. “Being able to be close to home, having my best friend Abby and my little brother Miller watch me was great. They don’t get to watch that often, so it was great to look over and see them cheering me on and support me.”

While friends and family were cheering her on all week and have been her whole career, a newer face to the scene was happy to be here for a second win. Just two years ago, at this exact event she met her caddy David Kelley for the first time. Since then, they have won two events in this week and the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic together, finished top-5 in the Race for the Card and now compete on both tour’s together.

“I told David [Kelley], my caddy, on Tuesday when I pulled into the parking lot, ‘did you know it’s our two-year anniversary?’ And he was like ‘oh my goodness.’ This event was the first time he worked for me two years ago exactly,” said Jackson. “So it’s really special to get our second win together on our two year ‘anniversary.’”

Jackson will compete this week at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G as she enters the last few events of the 2021 seasons.

“In golf I feel like it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. I’ve had some good finishes in the past, followed up by some slow starts, so I think this is a good momentum builder going into these last few weeks of the year. I know my game is in a good place and getting a win is a good confidence booster.”

With a 6-under par 66 in the final round of the Guardian Championship, Sierra Brooks (Orlando, Florida) tied for second at 8-under par for her fourth top-ten finish of the season.

The Road to the LPGA Rookie’s round was cut short yesterday with eight holes to go, but she came today with a mindset to birdie each one and give herself the best chance possible. With that, she was able to claim her career-best finish ahead of the final three weeks of the season.

“That was a fun eagle, it kind of kick started mt whole round yesterday. I hit a great drive, a nice 5-iron in and then drained a 30-footer, it really propelled me to making some more birdies,” said Brooks. “It tough when the leader is already in the clubhouse, and you have a number out there but it gave me something to shoot for. I knew I had eight holes left and eight birdies I needed to make, so my goal out there was to really give myself my best shot at birdies each hole.”

For 36-holes Brooks played alongside fellow Florida native and former University of Florida Gator, Samantha Wagner who finished T8 this week in Prattville, AL.

“Sam and I go way back to junior golf. It’s been awesome to play with her growing up and then now as professionals. She is someone that is a lot of fun to play with and is a great player. We always feed off of each other. She was making a ton of putts and I would think ‘alright it’s my turn now.’ I am excited to see where our future goes,” said Brooks. “Every week it’s just feeling closer and closer to getting that win. I am happy with where my game is, and I have my goals in mind, so I am just going to keep plugging towards them.

Coming in just one stroke behind are Linnea Johansson and Beth Wu tied for fourth.

“It played very solid both rounds. I had a lot of chances and made a few mistakes in the beginning of this round, yesterday. I kept rolling my putts well too, so it feels really nice to claim a good top-10,” said Johansson. “It’s been a very tough year for me bouncing between the LPGA and here. I am just trying to take every opportunity I can to play good golf because that’s all you can do and a good finish this week is great going into the final three events of the year.”

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