It doesn't look very sexy on the scorecard, but it might be the best string of pars in Kaito Onishi's young career.
Playing in winds that reached gale force on the final stretch along Calibogue Sound, the Japanese teen didn't yield a shot to par along Harbour Town's final five holes Sunday — good enough to win the Sea Pines Junior Heritage as the two golfers ahead of him struggled to finish.
J.J. Gresco bogeyed each of the final two holes, both of which could have been worse after finding hazards. Bluffton's Shiso Go, the first-round leader, followed a bogey at No. 17 with a double bogey on the 18th.
That left Onishi — the only player to match even-par 71 — suddenly accepting congratulations in the clubhouse for a one-stroke triumph.
"To be honest, I didn't think I was going to win," said Onishi, who completed two days at 2-over 145. "I just hit nice shots, made par, kept going."
Charlotte's Madison Moosa was a runaway winner in the girls' competition, using a 3-over 74 to stretch a three-shot lead into a seven-shot romp. Combined with her opening 73 Saturday at Heron Point, she posted the division's two lowest rounds of the weekend.
"I knew going into the day that I really didn't have to go very low," Moosa said. "I just tried to make good decisions because I didn't have to do anything spectacular. I just wanted to play my own game."
The duo became the latest additions to a Junior Heritage champions roster that includes Charles Howell, Sean O'Hair, Kyle Stanley, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lang and Lexi Thompson.
"To be able to put that name on that list is really nice," Moosa said.
Perhaps no pair of champions has played in tougher conditions. For the second consecutive day, temperatures barely reached 50 degrees and, though rain moved out before players teed off, the wind that moved in would have frustrated many a PGA Tour or LPGA pro.
Winds averaged 17 mph during the closing stages, with gusts approaching 35 mph.
Sunday's final three boys' groups played Nos. 17 and 18 in a combined 19-over par. For the girls' final trio of groups, those holes produced an aggregate 26-over.
"In my years running golf tournaments, this was probably the toughest one we've had (across) two days," said Chris Miller, the S.C. Junior Golf Association's managing director.
While Gresco and Go seemed primed for a back-nine battle, Onishi was literally out of sight while steadily moving up the leaderboard. With Sunday tee times alternating between boys' and girls' groups, the IMG Academy student played his round 40 minutes ahead of the leaders.
"I think it was great that I was four groups in front," said Onishi, who carded two birdies and two bogeys on the day. "I could just stay with my game, and I think that was really nice. I didn't really think about them at all during the round."
The wind certainly was plenty to think about, especially the final three holes. Onishi came up short with his approach at No.16, despite taking two extra clubs. Then his 6-iron at the par-3 17th went to the back of the green.
In both cases, he scrambled to salvage par. Then at No.18, he crushed a 3-wood into the wind and was rewarded to see his ball stop on the right side of the green.
Only after he two-putted for another par did Onishi realize what he'd done. "I just stood there like, 'Wow,'" he said. "That was really tough."
That would be borne out in the following groups, as struggles at No. 17 eventually created a two-group wait. By the time Gresco and Go reached the tee, they were already trying to hold their rounds together — Gresco had bogeyed No. 15, and Go was on a run of three bogeys in his prevous four holes.
"Hardest round ever," said Go, a student at IJGA Academy. "The wind made my higher (flight) shots go really bad."
Both stood at 1-over as they teed off at No. 17, with Gresco rinsing his tee shot and Go finding the bunker. Both bogeyed, with Gresco draining a clutch 8-footer to avoid double.
That brought them to No. 18, where Go appeared in decent shape despite missing his approach right of the green. Gresco was in the sea oats, blasting well past the flag but coaxing a two-putt into the cup for bogey and a closing 74.
Go chipped long, then three-putted for a disheartening double bogey. Gresco, of Scottsdale, Ariz., initially thought he might have won the tournament until collecting his thoughts as he left the green.
"I wasn't 100 percent sure," he said, "and kind of figured someone maybe shot a lower number for the win."
Gresco's 74 wound up leaving him tied for second with Raleigh's Doc Redman (72). Go was another stroke back after completing his 78.