IJGT Junior at TPC Louisiana – Tour Preview

The International Junior Golf Tour will be headed to Avondale, La. on December 21-22 for the IJGT Junior at TPC Louisiana. This will be the first time the IJGT has held an event at TPC Louisiana. Players will be competing for national rankings and IJGT Merit Points.

Host of the PGA TOUR’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans, TPC Louisiana is ranked as the 5th best golf course in Louisiana and is included in “The Top 100 Public Golf Courses” by Golf Digest. The course was designed by renowned architect Pete Dye, working in conjunction with PGA TOUR players Steve Elkington and Kelly Gibson. The par-72 course stretches over 250 acres of wetlands along the Mississippi River delta and features over 100 bunkers. The course’s signature hole is No. 18, featuring water running all the way up the right side, making for a memorable finish.

TPC Louisiana #18

No. 18 at TPC Louisiana is the course’s signature hole, featuring water all the way along the right side.

Players to keep an eye on in the Boys 15-19 Division include Austin Campbell of Lake Charles, La., Beau David of Lafayette, La., and Gage Primeaux of Lake Charles, La., who will be looking to earn their first IJGT victories in their debut events. In the Boys 14 & Under Division Nolan Lambert of Gretna, La. will also be hoping to shoot his way to a victory in his debut. Allison Herring of Skillman, N.J. hopes to build off her 6th place finish at the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass and earn the championship in the Girls Division.

To register for the IJGT Junior at TPC Louisiana click here.

Final results from the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass

Furuya dominates at TPC Sawgrass

Nakatani victorious in Girls Division 

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla.   The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) held the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass on Nov. 29-Dec. 1, a three-round event which featured nearly 100 juniors golfers competing for National Rankings, IJGT Merit Points and AJGA Performance Stars. The first two rounds were conducted on the club’s Pete Dye Valley Course, while the third and final round was held on THE PLAYERS Stadium Course. Despite rough winds, cold weather conditions and the challenge of playing two famously difficult courses, the golfers were able to put on spectacular performances in front of many spectators and family members.

Furuya TrophyIn the Boys 15-19 Division, Ryoto Furuya of Wesley Chapel, Fla., held his ground, turning a narrow first and second round lead into a convincing 11-stroke victory. He recorded a 76-75-72–223, a 7-over-par performance which also gave him the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award in the Boys Division with an even-par 72 on the final day. During the first round, Furuya managed a 4-over-par 76 on Pete Dye’s Valley Course, making eight pars and three birdies, before posting a one-stroke improvement in his second round. His 3-over-par 75 on the second day was highlighted by a streak of six straight pars to start the round, while also making birdies on holes Nos. 8, 16, and 17.

“I focused on ball flight…and I thought, just have patience…I just stayed strong, and got ready for the final round,” commented Furuya.

Furuya did not let up, turning in an incredible even-par final round on THE PLAYERS Stadium Course on his way to his third IJGT victory. He shot a front-nine 32, including four straight birdies on holes Nos. 2-5, and posted a back-nine 40 with three more birdies on Nos. 14, 15 and 16.

Finishing in second place was Sam Meuret of Brunswick, Neb., with a tournament total of 234. In a tie for third place were Alex Shattuck of Sioux Falls, S.D., and Rij Patel of Hunt Valley, Md., who both shot totals of 236 through three rounds.

Nakatani TrophyRei Nakatani of Tokyo, Japan, was crowned victor of the Girls Division after shooting a total 83-75-74–232. After a rough first round put her six shots back of then-leader Cake Phuchanbanchob of Chiang Mai, Thailand, Nakatani came out in the second and final rounds determined to improve. She made an eight-stroke improvement on Day 2, sinking six more birdies and five less bogeys, including a streak of eight straight pars on the Valley’s Nos. 10-17. On the Stadium Course during the final round, Nakatani started off strong with birdies on Nos. 2 and 3. She played the course’s par-3s in 1-under-par during the final round, which helped catapult her into a come-from-behind, 11-stroke victory.

Nakatani’s final-round, 2-over-par 74 was tied with Thamonpat Siriko of Bangkok, Thailand, for the low round in the Girls Division, which earned each of them the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Awards for their performances.

“I was three shots behind, but it wasn’t about who I was playing with. It was about the course, and I think I did the best that I could do,” said Nakatani.

Rounding out the top three in the Girls Division were Phuchanbanchob, who finished in second place with a tournament total of 243, and Siriko who carded a final score of 245.

Vilips TrophyThe Boys 14 & Under Division saw Karl Vilips of Melbourne, Australia, grab his fifth IJGT victory of the season, shooting a total 83-89-78–250 at the 54-hole event. After trailing by one stroke concluding the first round of action, Vilips made two momentum-swaying birdies on Nos. 5 and 12 during his second round on the Valley Course to give him a one-stroke lead going into the final round. Surrounded by warmer weather during the final round action on the Stadium Course, Vilips was able to manage an 11-stroke improvement over his previous round score, including a highlight-worthy birdie on the renowned 17th hole to seal a 10-stroke victory in the division.

“I felt confident, but I didn’t want to get arrogant because I knew some of the players had the ability to catch up… I just wanted to shoot a score that would at least have a chance to win,” commented Vilips.

Luis Sanchez of Tampico, Mexico, sealed a second-place finish with his tournament total of 260, while Danny Dougherty of Wilmington, Del., grabbed a third-place finish with his total score of 265.

The IJGT Southeast tour will be back in action Dec. 7-8, 201for the Bluffton Junior at Hampton Hall Club in Bluffton, S.C. To sign up for this Event, or others, visit IJGT.com or call (843) 785-2444.

 

About the IJGT

The IJGT provides exceptional junior golfers with the opportunity to develop and showcase their competitive skills while setting high standards to preserve the traditions and integrity of the game.  As a tour that operates primarily throughout the academic year, the IJGT hosts approximately 60 tournaments annually. In addition, the IJGT hosts three international events. Each event provides multi-day competition for junior golfers of all skill levels ages 9-19. Players representing 45 states and 43 countries around the world regularly compete in events at venues such as TPC Sawgrass, Pinehurst, Bethpage State Park and Harbour Town Golf Links. Official partners of the IJGT include Bridgestone Golf, Quagmire Golf, CHAMP Spikes, AB Golf Designs, Clazic Belts, morodZ, Sundog Eyewear, PURE Grips, The First Tee, Golfweek and International Junior Golf Academy.

To obtain more information about the IJGT, please visit www.IJGT.com or call (843) 785-2444.

 

International Junior Golf Tour
Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass
Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
November 29 – December 1, 2013
 
Round 1: Valley Course
Round 2: Valley Course
Round 3: Stadium Course

Boys 15-19 Division – (Blue Tees) Valley: 6,748 Yards, Par 72 | Stadium: 6,672 Yards, Par 72
1. Ryoto Furuya, Wesley Chapel, FL, *76-75-72–223
2. Sam Meuret, Brunswick, NE, *78-78-78–234
3. Alex Shattuck, Sioux Falls, SD, *77-80-79–236
3. Rij Patel, Hunt Valley, MD, *77-80-79–236
5. Blake Fiest, Huntersville, NC, *81-76-80–237
6. Harry Jin, Palisades Park, NJ, *77-81-82–240
7. Yong Sherng Hui, Taman Dagang, Malaysia, *82-81-79–242
8. Ryan Davis, Berkeley Heights, NJ, *86-83-74–243
8. Maurizio Debono, Basiglio, Italy, *85-77-81–243
10. Ritwik Jain, New Delhi, India, *78-85-82–245
11. Luigi D’Amico, Forli, Italy, *85-80-82–247
12. Lee Hammerschmidt, Armonk, NY, *83-76-89–248
13. Salil Ghamande, Evans, GA, *87-84-79–250
13. Diego Vega, Mexico City, Mexico, *85-84-81–250
13. Brett Inserra, Upper Saddle River, NJ, *82-80-88–250
16. Keshav Sharma, New Delhi, India, *76-85-90–251
17. Nicholas Russell, Hilton Head Island, SC, *85-84-83–252
18. Kyle Vincze, North Reading, MA, *87-86-80–253
19. Taiga Fujii, Toyama-shi, Japan, *83-86-85–254
19. Griffin Colvin, Media, PA, *87-80-87–254
19. Gus Minkin, York, PA, *78-85-91–254
22. Brian Baker, Pittsburgh, PA, *91-82-83–256
22. Jack Fleming, Falkirk, Scotland, *86-87-83–256
22. Nicholas Infanti, Clarksburg, MD, *85-87-84–256
22. Thomas Kaczan, Clark, NJ, *89-82-85–256
22. Travis Broome, Virginia Beach, VA, *87-81-88–256
22. Tennoshin Ogawa, Ichinomiya-shi, Japan, *81-79-96–256
28. David Ross, Lorton, VA, *92-83-82–257
28. Kanoon Bunthanawong, Chonburi, Thailand, *87-89-81–257
28. Mike Bliss, Newtown, PA, *80-89-88–257
28. John McCabe, Sewickley, PA, *87-78-92–257
32. Pongpalin Lapvisuttisin, Bangkok, Thailand, *90-83-85–258
32. Kip Karani, Tallahassee, FL, *86-86-86–258
32. Cody White, Sweetser, IN, *98-78-82–258
35. Sam Jones, Hinsdale, IL, *86-84-89–259
36. Cameron Clair, Bluffton, SC, *89-85-86–260
36. Brad Cook, Jackson, WY, *86-86-88–260
36. Chris Cerminaro, Carbondale, PA, *83-84-93–260
39. Felipe Lewis, Panama City, Panama, *92-87-82–261
40. Juanda Morgan, Panama City, Panama, *93-82-87–262
41. Jack Lupori, Steamboat Springs, CO, *92-83-88–263
41. Brent Whiting, Ponte Vedra, FL, *83-84-96–263
43. Nick Geiman, York, PA, *87-84-93–264
43. Tyler Berdy, Riverside, CA, *91-89-84–264
43. Eric Schissel, Port Washington, NY, *95-87-82–264
46. Karan Arjun, Bangalore, India, *84-90-91–265
46. Caleb Bryant, New Freedom, PA, *94-85-86–265
48. Mitch Lamping, Liberty Twp, OH, *89-86-92–267
48. Carlos Fernandez, Madrid, Spain, *95-87-85–267
50. Kyle Kost, New Hope, PA, *96-83-89–268
51. Bobby Nixon, Port St. Lucie, FL, *94-82-93–269
51. Hao Yang Lin, Taichung. Taiwan, *96-90-83–269
53. Guodong Ji, Quing Dao, China, *92-91-87–270
54. Norman Hong, Shenzhen, China, *86-88-97–271
55. Nico Ardito Barletta, Panama City, Panama, *93-86-93–272
56. Peter Kelesis, Las Vegas, NV, *84-104-85–273
57. Luis Fer Varela, Panama City, Panama, *95-90-90–275
58. Pattarapoom Pacharn, Nonthaburi, Thailand, *97-93-86–276
59. Scott Lemon, Winnipeg, Canada, *90-93-94–277
60. Hazwan Asraff Bin Abdul Rahman, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, *86-90-103–279
61. Kanawut Uenghiranpaisan, Bangkok, Thailand, *96-91-93–280
62. Ricky Humbert, Panama City, Panama, *95-100-94–289
63. Todd Glickfield IV, Marion, IN, *101-90-99–290
64. Armand Cadieux, New Hartford, NY, *100-88-104–292
65. Kotaro Nishimura, Ota-Ku, Japan, *100-93-102–295
66. Prince Phuklabsawan, Chonburi, Thailand, *116-106-97–319
67. Diego Ardito Barletta, Panama City, Panama, *109-108-105–322
68. Jerry Sung, Hong Kong, China, *127-129-123–379
 
DID NOT FINISH
Chad McCann, Haymarket, VA, *DQ (Rule 6-6b)
Brock Erwin, Muldrow, OK, *DQ (Rule 6-6b)
Justin Murray, Burlington, NJ, *89-77–DQ (Rule 6-6d)
Ben Cohn, Guayaquil, Ecuador, *85-84–DQ (Rule 33-7)
Thomas Urciuoli, Short Hills, NJ, *JWD
Matthew Bastian, Media, PA, *100–JWD

Boys 14 & Under Division – (White Tees) Valley: 6,243 Yards, Par 72 | Stadium: 5,992 Yards, Par 72
1. Karl Vilips, Melbourne, Australia, *83-89-78-250
2. Luis Sanchez, Tampico, Mexico, *89-85-86-260
3. Danny Dougherty, Wilmington, DE, *91-84-90-265
4. Jacob Morris, Hollywood, SC, *88-88-90-266
4. Thomas Lipowicz, Alexandria, VA, *96-81-89-266
6. Brandon McBride, Bluffton, SC, *87-86-95-268
7. Alexander Camberos, Kigali, Rwanda, *101-99-107-307
8. Will Whittaker, Palm Beach Gardens, FL, *109-100-121-330
9. Jose Chavez, Guatemala City, Guatemala, *98-114-126-338

DID NOT FINISH
Brian Aslanian, Purchase, NY, *82-88–DQ (Rule 6-6d)
Sangmin Ahn, Seocho-Gu, South Korea, *DQ (Rule 6-6b)
Christian Clemence Tupamahu, Manado, Indonesia, *94-85–DQ (Rule 6-6b)

Girls Division – (Green Tees) Valley: 5,913 Yards, Par 72 | Stadium: 5,718 Yards, Par 72
1. Rei Nakatani, Tokyo, Japan, *83-75-74–232
2. Cake Phuchanbanchob, Chiang Mai, Thailand, *77-78-88–243
3. Thamonpat Siriko, Bangkok, Thailand, *88-83-74–245
4. Nikita Arjun, Bangalore, India, *81-82-84–247
5. Samantha Huang, Shenzhen, China, *84-83-82–249
6. Allison Herring, Skillman, NJ, *89-90-86–265
7. Kristin Whitehead, Johannesburg, South Africa, *89-87-91–267
8. Jamie Rickert, Overland Park, KS, *88-94-88–270
9. Yeji Ahn, Changwon-City, South Korea, *86-96-98–280
9. Sasha Glickfield, Marion, IN, *89-84-107–280
11. Taylor Clark, Red Bank, NJ, *102-101-92–295
12. Ammy Uenghiranpaisan, Bangkok, Thailand, *109-108-123–340

Second round highlights from the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) held the second round of the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass on Saturday, Nov. 30. With ruthless, brutal winds clocking in at more than 25 miles per hour all day, the players were more than challenged on the club’s par-72 Pete Dye Valley Course. Regardless, they showed lasting determination and concentration during their rounds. Here are your division leaders going into the tournament’s final round on Sunday, Dec. 1.

Ryoto Furuya of Wesley Chapel, Fla., who was a co-leader after the first round, now has sole possession of first place in the Boys 15-19 Division after shooting a tournament-low round of 75. Here is Furuya’s round by the numbers:

Ryoto Furuya:

37 – back nine score

12 – number of pars

6 – fewer bogeys than his first round performance

5 – stroke lead going into the final round

3 – number of birdies

-3 – score on the course’s four par-5s

The Boys 14 & Under Division has a new face atop the leaderboard in Karl Vilips of Melbourne, Australia. Vilips shot a second-round 89. Here is his round by the numbers:

Karl Vilips:

42 – score on the front nine

4 – number of pars

4 – wins on the IJGT this year (his first season)

2 – number of birdies

1 – stroke lead going into the final round

E – score on the course’s four par-3s

In the Girls Division, Cake Phuchanbanchob of Chiang Mai, Thailand, continues to hold onto the lead after a second-round 78 performance. Here is her round by the numbers:

Cake Phuchanbanchob:

38 – back nine score

8 – number of pars

3 – stroke lead going into the final round

2 – number of birdies

E – score on the course’s four par-3s

-1 – score on the course’s four par-5s

 

The final round of the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass will take place on THE PLAYERS Stadium Course on Sunday, Dec. 1.

For complete results of the first round click here. Pairings for final-round action at the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass can be found here.

 

First round highlights from the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) held the first round of the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass on Friday, Nov. 29. Contested on the famous club’s Pete Dye Valley Course, the first round featured a field of nearly 100 junior golfers who took to the greens while battling unusually chilly weather and very forceful winds. Here are your division leaders going into the tournament’s second round on Saturday, Nov. 30.

In a tie for first place in the Boys 15-19 Division are Keshav Sharma of New Delhi, India, and Ryoto Furuya of Wesley Chapel, Fla., who both shot a 4-over-par 76. Here are their rounds by the numbers:

Keshav Sharma:

38- front and back nine scores (2-over-par)

8 – number of pars (44.4% of his scores)

3 – number of birdies

1 – stroke lead going into the second round. This is also Sharma’s first season with the IJGT

E – score on the course’s four par-5s

Ryoto Furuya:

36 – score on the front nine (even-par)

8 – number of pars (44.4% of his scores)

4 – this is Furuya’s fourth season with the IJGT

3 – number of birdies

E – score on the course’s par-3s and par-5s

In the Boys 14 & Under Division, Brian Aslanian of Purchase, N.Y., leads the way with a first-round 10-over-par 82. Here is his round by the numbers:

Brian Aslanian:

40 – score on the front nine (4-over-par)

7 – number of pars (38.9% of his scores)

3 – this is Aslanian’s third season on the IJGT

1 – number of birdies; stroke lead going into the second round

E – score on the course’s four par-3s

The Girls Division is led by Cake Phuchanbanchob of Chiang Mai, Thailand, who shot a 5-over-par 77. Here is a recap of her round by the numbers:

Cake Phuchanbanchob:

38 – score on the back nine (2-over-par)

11 – number of pars (61.1% of his scores)

4 – stroke lead going into the second round

3 – this is Phuchanbanchob’s third season with the IJGT

-1 – score on the course’s four par-5s

 

The second round of the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass will take place on the Valley Course, while the final round on Sunday, Dec. 1, will be contested on the club’s PLAYERS Stadium Course.

For complete results of the first round click here. Pairings for second-round action at the Thanksgiving Day Classic at TPC Sawgrass can be found here.

Scottsdale Open at Troon North – Tour Preview

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) will be in Scottsdale, Arizona on December 14-15 for the Scottsdale Open at Troon North Golf Club. The two-day, 36-hole tournament will be competed on Troon North’s Pinnacle Course. This will be the third time the IJGT and Troon North have teamed up for an event, as the club hosted two events during the 2012-13 IJGT season.

Located in the desert areas of northern Scottsdale, Troon North’s Pinnacle course plays as a par-71 with a course rating of 73 and slope of 149 from the back tees. The Pinnacle course features five sets of tees ranging from 7,025 yards to 4,883 yards. The course has received a number of local and national accolades for its excellence including #1 on “The Best Courses You Can Play” for Arizona and #20 on “The Best Courses You Can Play” in the United States by Golf Magazine in 2012, while Troon North was awarded the top-billing on Golf Channel’s 2011, “Top 10 Arizona Resort Courses.”

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Troon North’s Pinnacle Course will play host to the Scottsdale Open on Dec. 14-15.

Players to keep an eye on in the Boys 15-19 Division include Thomas Avant of Chandler, Ariz., Sam McKay of Scottsdale, Ariz., and Jackson Whisenhunt of Phoenix, Ariz. Avant has had success in past IJGT Events at Troon North finishing 2nd at the PURE Grips Shootout at Troon North’s Monument Course and a tie for 6th at the PURE Grips Jr. Open on the Pinnacle Course last season. McKay had an 11th place finish at the Pure Grips Jr. Open last season and then placed in a tie for 2nd in September of this season at the West Coast Kickoff at TPC Scottsdale. Whisenhunt tied with McKay at the West Coast Kickoff, with both players firing a tournament total of 152. Whisenhunt shot scores of 76-81-157 at the Pinnacle Course last season to finish in a tie for 16th. Samuel Foust of Edina, Minn., and Joe Highsmith of Lakewood, Wash. will be making their IJGT debuts at Troon North.

In the Boys 14 & Under Division, Reese Phillips Murrieta, Calif., and Cole Skach of Reno, Nev. are both in search of their first career IJGT victories. Phillips has finished in the top-10 of all four IJGT Events he has competed in. Like Phillips, Skach has also finished in the top-10 in every IJGT event he has competed in. Phillips will be making his 2013-14 season debut, while Skach is competing in his third event of the season, having placed 3rd at the NorCal Junior at Darkhorse Golf Club in September and in a tie for 4th at the Pacific Coast Open at Half Moon Bay in November.

IJGA Invitational – Tour Preview

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) will be hosting the IJGA Invitational on Dec. 14-15 at Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island, S.C. The two-day, 36-hole tournament will consist of one round at Sea Pines Ocean Course and one round at Harbour Town Golf Links. Players will be competing for national rankings and Double IJGT Merit Points at the last Major Championship of the fall season.

The first course built on Hilton Head Island, the Ocean Course features one of only two oceanfront holes on the island. The par-72 course stretches to 6,906 yards with a rating of 73.5 and slope of 144 from the back tees. Strategically-placed bunkers and lagoons provide difficulties to players of all skill levels. The par-3, 15th is the signature hole at the Ocean Course, as elevated tees give players unobstructed views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Hole 15 Ocean Course

The par-3, 15th hole at Sea Pines Ocean Course is one of only two oceanfront holes on Hilton Head Island.

Harbour Town Golf Links is the more nationally known of the courses at Sea Pines. Harbour Town has played host to the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage (formally Heritage Classic) since 1969. The course is consistently awarded billing as one of the top courses, including being rated 18th in Golf Digest’s 2013-14 “America’s 100 Greatest Public Golf Courses.” Playing as a par-71, the course features five sets of tees stretching from 5,208 yards to 7,101 yards. The 18th hole at Harbour Town is one of golf’s most well-known holes, as players overlook Calibogue Sound and features the Harbour Town Lighthouse in the background.

Harbour Town Lighthouse 18 Green

The 18th hole at Harbour Town Golf Links provides one of the most recognizable finishing holes in golf.

The IJGA Invitational consistently features one of the strongest fields of the IJGT season, and this year is no different. In the Boys 15-19 Division, Tennoshin Ogawa of Ichinomiya-shi, Japan, Shota Ozaki of Tokyo, Japan, William Thomson of Pittsford, N.Y., and Trey Wren of Suffolk, Va. highlight a strong field. Ogawa, Ozaki, and Wren have all been victorious in IJGT Events this season, while Thomson won last season’s IJGA Invitational in the Boys 14 & Under Division, narrowly edging out Ogawa. Other players to keep an eye on include Matt Cheng of Taipei, Taiwan and Bobby Firth of Jenkintown, Pa.

Takafumi Shimoji looks to continue his impressive rookie season on the IJGT by capturing the tournament in the Boys 14 & Under Division. Shimoji has won three tournaments this fall while finishing 2nd in his other two events. Shimoji shot his low round of the season in the first round of the Lowcountry Open at Oldfield Golf Club in August, carding six birdies on his way to a 5-under-par, 67. Players to also watch in the Boys 14 & Under Division include Alex Lawson of Pittsburgh, Pa., Brandon McBride of Bluffton, S.C., Ryan McCarthy of Rockville Centre, N.Y., and Luis Sanchez of Tampico, Mexico.

The Girls Division features a number of players who have had successful seasons so far, including Samantha Huang Shenzhen, China, Ana Paula Valdes of Morelia, Mexico, and Kelly Whaley of Farmington, Conn., all of whom have been victorious twice this fall. Cake Phuchanbanchob of Chiang Mai, Thailand, Clementina Rodriquez of Caracas, Venezuela, Ana Ruiz of Chihuahua, Mexico, Thamonpat Siriko of Bangkok, Thailand, and Susana Vik of Greenwich, Conn. all placed in the top ten of last year’s IJGA Invitational.

IJGT Alum Shanshan Feng wins LPGA’s CME Group Titleholders

Former International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) member and current LPGA Tour player, Shanshan Feng, won her second LPGA event of the year at the CME Group Titleholders at Tiburón Golf Club in Naples, Fla., on Nov. 21-24, 2013. At the season-ending tournament featuring some of the world’s top players, the 24-year-old from Guangzhou, China, had a remarkable outing that has moved her up to No. 4 in the Rolex Women’s World Golf rankings as of Nov. 25.

She carded a 15-under-par 273 at the event, including a bogey-free 6-under-par 66 in the final round which tied for the lowest score of the day. The performance solidified Feng’s one-shot victory over American and third-round co-leader Gerina Piller, and put her two shots ahead of third place finisher, Pornanong Phatlum. Her first, second and third round scores were 66-74-67, respectively.

Shanshan Feng headshot

Shanshan Feng was a member of the IJGT and a standout IJGA student.

This was the third victory of Feng’s career, and the second in her last four starts. She recently won at the Reignwood LPGA Classic (Oct. 3-6), was runner-up at the Sime Darby Malaysia (Oct. 10-13), and tied for eighth at the Mizuno Classic (Nov. 8-10) before this week’s finale. Feng’s $700,000 winnings gives her the tour’s largest winner’s check this year and officially puts her at just over $4,000,000 in total career earnings.

Before turning pro in 2007, Feng was a seasoned IJGT veteran, playing on the tour and winning four events during the 2007-2008 season. That year, Feng qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open, and was named the Top Chinese Amateur by Golfweek in 2008She tied for ninth at that season’s LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament to earn tour exemption for the 2008 LPGA season and turned pro immediately after. She gained her first victory at the Wegman’s LPGA Championship on June 7-10, 2012.

Stats and feature image courtesy of LPGA.com.

IJGT Photo of the Week – Nov. 16-17, 2013

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Jake Leppek putts on the 18th at The Old Course at Half Moon Bay Golf Links (Nov. 16-17, 2013)

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) traveled to Half Moon Bay, CA on Nov 16-17 for the Pacific Coast Open at Half Moon BayThe event was held on the Old Course at Half Moon Bay Golf Links, and featured 21 players representing four states. This week’s Photo of the Week is of Jake Leppek of Rocklin, Calif., putting on the 18th green as Michael Mendelsohn (left) of San Francisco, Calif., and Karl Beidle (right) of Reno, Nev., look on and waves from the Pacific Coast crash down only feet away. This was the second IJGT Event both Beidle and Leppek have competed in, while it was Mendelsohn’s first. We look forward to seeing all three players in future IJGT Events.

IJGT Alum I.K. Kim ties for 7th at LPGA Lorena Ochoa Invitational

Former International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) player and current LPGA Tour member, I.K. Kim, tied for seventh place at the Lorena Ochoa Invitational presented by Banamex on Nov. 14-17, 2013. The 72-hole tournament took place in Guadalajara, Mexico, and featured some of the LPGA’s most talented professionals.

I.K. Kim during the final round of the Lorena Ochoa Invitational Presented by Banamex (photo courtesy of LPGA)

Kim closed with a four-round score of 70-67-67-75–279, good for a 9-under par performance on the 6,626-yard, par-72 course at Guadalajara Country Club. Kim had particularly strong Rounds 2 & 3, where she carded back-to-back 5-under-par 67’s among a field that finished with an average score of 70.413 for the event.

This top ten finish for Kim was her ninth of the calendar year, and her best since tying for fifth at the CN Canadian Women’s Open on Aug. 22-25, 2013. She won the event in 2010, and is currently ranked 9th in the weekly Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings.

Kim was a graduate of the International Junior Golf Academy (IJGA), and while with the IJGT, she played in and won three events. She was also victorious at the prestigious U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship in Eagle, Idaho in July 2005. As an amateur in 2006, Kim earned co-medalist honors at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament, where she earned exempt status for the 2007 LPGA season. Kim then turned professional immediately following the final round of the event, and soon thereafter competed in her first LPGA event in February 2007.

Bluffton Junior at Hampton Hall – Tour Preview

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) will be in Bluffton, S.C. on Dec. 7-8 for the Bluffton Junior at Hampton Hall. Hampton Hall Club’s Pete Dye Signature Course last hosted an IJGT Event Nov. 10-11, 2012, with the Major Championship at Hampton Hall Club being contested there. The two-day tournament will consist of top junior golfers from around the world competing for national rankings and IJGT Merit Points over the course of 36 holes.

Dye’s course at Hampton Hall features a brilliantly open design, but requires more precision than would seem. Water hazards come into play on 15 of the courses holes, while a number of strategically placed bunkers make precision needed on every shot. . With yardage stretching anywhere from 5,329 yards to 7,503 yards and swirling winds, this links-style course embodies the original soul of golf.

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Although open, bunkers and water hazards at Hampton Hall Club require players to focus on precision with every shot.

In the Boys 15-19 Division, Shogo Ito of Tokyo, Japan, Jake Kessel of Woodcliff Lake, N.J., and Sam Meuret of Brunswick, NE, highlight a number of players who look to tackle Dye’s course. Ito earned his first victory in the Boys 15-19 Division, and third career IJGT victory, earlier this year with a strong performance at the Florida Junior at Black Diamond. Ito carded 10 birdies over the two-day event, capturing a five stroke victory. Kessel will be looking to earn his first career victory. He came close earlier this year, finishing in a tie for second at the Aiken Junior Open at Woodside Plantation. Meuret, in his second year with the IJGT, has been a top-10 mainstay, finishing there in 11 of his 15 career events on tour.

In the Girls Division, Kelly Whaley of Farmington, CT, looks to continue her recent run of success on the IJGT. In her last five events, dating back to the 2012-13 season, Whaley has three victories and hasn’t finished lower than in a tie for second. She was most recently victorious at the Major Championship at Palmetto Dunes after firing scores of 73-70-143 at the George Fazio Course. Samantha Huang of Shenzhen, China, will be one of Whaley’s biggest challengers. Huang has been victorious at the IJGT Island Open at Palmetto Hall and the Sanctuary Shootout this year and looks to add a third victory to her impressive rookie season with the IJGT.

In the Boys 14 & Under Division, Takafumi Shimoji of Okinawa, Japan, headlines the field. Shimoji has been stellar this season, winning three tournaments and finishing second in his other two events. The highlight of his season was a dominating performance in his first event, the Lowcountry Open at Oldfield GC, where he shot scores of 67-71-138 to finish the tournament at 6-under-par and earn a 9 stroke victory. His score of 138 was the low of any player in the field. Brandon McBride of Bluffton, SC, looks to prevent Shimoji of his fourth victory while earning his first of the season. McBride has finished in the top-3 in three events this season and has placed no lower than sixth in any event.

To register for the Bluffton Junior at Hampton Hall, click here.