Niagara Gazette


July 26, 2013

Porter Cup Notebook: Auburn's Johnson gets first taste

Niagara Gazette —

LEWISTON — When Michael Johnson tapped in for par from the green of the Niagara Falls Country Club’s 18th hole Thursday, he embraced each player in his group with a firm handshake and a friendly pat on the shoulder.

He then walked to the scorer’s tent to submit his spoils from the day before meeting his parents, who arrived in town earlier this week from their home in Birmingham, Ala., to support their son.

Johnson, a 20-year-old junior at Auburn University, is surrounded by familiar faces as he plays in his first Porter Cup this year, the 55th running of the prestigious tournament.

Johnson was one of the biggest climbers during Day Two, which featured pristine weather conditions with temperatures in the low 70s around the sun-kissed fairways at NFCC.

After shooting a first-round 71 on Wednesday, Johnson teed off at 9:20 a.m. tied for 24th. By the time he walked off No. 18 about four hours later, his round of 66 helped him climb 15 spots into a tie for ninth place 3 strokes under par entering the third round.

Johnson, rated No. 41 in the Scratch Player World Amateur Rankings, is one of the 44 players in the field of 84 playing at NFCC for the first time. He set a tournament record while winning the Dogwood Invitational this year, shooting a 28-under 260 over four rounds.

Playing his first two rounds alongside a pair of friends, last year’s champion Richy Werenski and runner-up Denny McCarthy, has helped Johnson settle in here.

“It’s nice to have friends out here,” Johnson said of Werenski and McCarthy. “Especially ones who have done well here. … They point out some of the little things you normally wouldn’t see but make all the difference.”

The trio compete in about 15 tournaments together each year. The close proximity of their schools -- Werenski attends Georgia Tech and McCarthy plays at Virginia -- has encouraged the friendship.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page