HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C – The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) will be in central Pennsylvania on October 26-27 for The Final Challenge at Hershey Links. Located in Hummelstown, Hershey Links will be hosting its final IJGT Event, as the club is closing at the end of this season. Top junior golfers from around the Northeast will be competing for national rankings and IJGT Merit Points.
Opened in 2003, the course was originally known as Wren Dale Golf Club before being purchased by the Hershey Trust Company two years later. The course stretches over 175 acres of what used to be farmland and includes numerous ponds and creeks, pot bunkers, wide fairways and natural habitat. With five sets of tees, the links-style course can play anywhere from 4,764 yards to 7,009. The course has been included in Golfweek’s “Top Courses You Can Play” in Pa., Zagat Survey’s “America’s Top Golf Courses” and GolfStyles Philadelphia’s “Top 100 Courses You Can Play.” Hershey Links has played host to an NCAA Division III National Championship, U.S. Open Qualifiers, and a number of IJGT Events over the years.
A few players to keep an eye on at Hershey Links include Matthew Bastian of New Media, Pa., Thomas Kaczan of Clark, N.J., and Gus Minkin of York, Pa., in the Boys 15-19 Division, Madison Braman of Loudonville, N.Y., Liza Freed of Alexandria, Va., and Frida Henningsson of Rye, N.Y., in the Girls Division, and Garrett Engle of Harrisburg, Pa., and Joe Parrini of York, Pa., in the Boys 14 & Under Division.
Neither Bastian, Kaczan nor Minkin have been victorious on tour this season, but all three have come close. When the IJGT hosted the Labor Day Classic at Hershey Country Club, Bastian and Minkin finished in the top five, at a tie for fifth and a tie for second respectively. For Bastian, it was one of three top-five finishes this season. Kaczan played in the final group during the final round of the Major Championship at Crystal Springs but was unable to take home the victory.
Freed captured a championship this season, as she shot 75-73-148 to win the College Series at University of Maryland by nine strokes. It was her third career win in an IJGT Event. Braman and Henningsson will both be in search of their first career victories. For the season, Braman’s highest finish was fifth in the Philly Open at Jeffersonville, while Henningsson was second at the Labor Day Classic at Hershey and fourth at the Major Championship at Crystal Springs.
Parrini has been on quite the roll in the Boys 14 & Under Division. In five events this season, he has finished no lower than fifth place, and picked up three victories in a three week stretch, including a Major Championship. Engle played in the final group with Parrini at the Philly Open, finishing runner-up to Parrini in his only IJGT Event so far this season. For his IJGT career, Engle has three victories on the Discovery Tour.
To register for this event, please contact the IJGT at (843) 785-2444.