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Highlighted Players of the Week: Tournament of Champions
2012 Bridgestone Golf Tournament of Champions
May 26-28, 2012
Written by Adam Piratzky
(Orlando, Fla.) - Over Memorial Day weekend, the International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) held the 2012 Bridgestone Golf Tournament of Champions at Grand Cypress Resort in Orlando, Fla. The field consisted of the most talented junior golfers in the world which made for an exciting season-ending event. Junior golfers took their skills to the New Course, which is designed after birthplace of the game, the Old Course at St. Andrews. In addition, juniors were challenged by the East/North Course which is known for elevated greens and tight fairways. There were tow players who stood out and separated themselves from the rest of the field which earned them a championship title and this week's player of the week notability.
The Boys 15-19 Division has proved to be the most competitive as players are trying to gain the attention of college coaches and some even preparing for college golf in the fall. Peter Mathison of West Palm Beach, Fla., rose to the occasion playing some of the best junior golf the tour has seen all season. He began his first round of play on the difficult East/North Course. Mathison carded five birdies and two bogeys on the round, giving him scores of 35-34 for a first round three-under-par 69. After the first round of play, Mathison held a commanding three stroke lead over Willis Huynh of Syosset, N.Y. The second round for the Boys 15-19 Division was played on the New Course, which has been proved in the past to be "moving day" because the course allows for lower scores. Mathison began his round on good note as he drained a 40-footer on the first hole with college coaches watching. He remained strong for the rest of the round as he carded six birdies total, five of them coming in his final nine holes for a back nine score of 31. His final round score of four-under-par 68, gave him a two-round total of seven-under par 137. The final round was canceled due to inclement weather, so his tournament total of seven-under par was more than good enough to take the title by an outstanding seven strokes.
The Girls Division provided extraordinary junior golf talent of all ages as Anina Ku of Basking Ridge, N.J., was only 11 years old and captured two wins this past season. The competitor who pushed herself away from the rest of the field was Susana Vik of Greenwich, Conn. Vik had a successful 2011-2012 season with four Top-10 finishes including a second place finish at Hershey Links Golf Club. She opened up the season-ending tournament on the New Course where she carded four birdies on the round and posted a first round two-under 70. The second round of play for the Girls Division was on the more difficult East/North Course where Vik had three birdies on the front nine which helped her to a six-over 78. The final round went back to the New Course and was shortened to nine holes due to Tropical Storm Beryl. Vik remained confident and on top of the leaderboard as she posted a front nine score of three-over-par 39 to take the title by one stroke over Moyu Sasaki of Tokyo, Japan and Jackie Rogowicz of Yardley, Pa.
The IJGT had another exciting 2011-2012 season and are looking forward to the 2012 Euro Junior Golf Cup this summer as well as preparing for the 2012-2013 season beginning next fall. Congratulations to all competitors and good luck in your future endeavors.