ORLANDO, Fla. – The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) hosted its 18th Annual Bridgestone Golf Tournament of Champions at Grand Cypress Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. May 25-27. Grand Cypress Golf Club features 45 holes of Jack Nicklaus Signature golf design with juniors playing the New Course and East and North nine-hole courses.
Mickey Werenski of South Hadley, Mass., captured the Boys 15-19 Division after an impressive final round even-par 72. Werenski’s score equaled the lowest round of the day in the division as other players on the leaderboard faltered.
Werenski opened his tournament with a 1-under-par 71 to put himself in a prime position to climb the leaderboard for the rest of the tournament. He never dipped outside the top five at any point as his consistent play outlasted everyone. Back-to-back even-par 72s on the final two days were good enough for a three-stroke victory.
A turning point in the tournament came early on the back nine during the final round. Werenski was coming off a double-bogey on the par-5 ninth hole and stepped up to the 10th tee in the midst of a packed leaderboard. However, three birdies in a row from holes Nos. 10-12 gave him enough breathing room on the remaining holes.
“This is probably the best I have been playing lately for the past few weeks,” Werenski said. “I definitely had a good feeling about it for about two weeks now. I wanted to close with a bang because I have been so close so many times this year.”
In second place was Michael Pfeifer of Pforzheim, Germany, with a three-day total 2-over-par 218. Matt Cheng of Taipei, Taiwan, Shosei Inokawa of Atamishi, Japan, and Zachary Boe of Bluffton, S.C., finished in three-way tie for third place with a 5-over-par 221 three-day total.
Werenski, Saravit Kerdsinchai of Nonthaburi, Thailand, Tennoshin Ogawa of Ichinomiya-shi, Japan, and Taiga Fujii of Toyama-shi, Japan all received the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award for their Monday score of even-par 72.
The Boys 14 & Under Division featured nine juniors from the All IJGT Team for the 2012-2013 season. Throughout a packed leaderboard all weekend, Davis Shore persevered to become the division’s champion. Shore’s opening round 3-under-par 69 gave him enough cushion during the final round to win by four strokes.
His opening round of 3-under-par 69 was the best round in all divisions on Saturday giving him the coveted KENTWOOL Socks Lo-Pro Award.
Although Shore played his highest round during the final round, the 10 birdies he made during the first two rounds held off any challengers. Luke Schaap of Potomac, Md., found himself within striking distance but he was unable to make it happen as he posted 11 pars in a row to close out his final round.
When asked about his mindset going into the final round, Shore responded, “I tried not to do anything stupid. Just hit a lot of good shots and I knew I would be okay. I did not do quite as well as I would have liked but I won so I am still very happy with it.”
The race for second place was close as Schaap outlasted Nate Menon of Wyomissing, Pa., Schaap shot a 5-over-par three day total 221 as Menon shot a 6-over-par three-day total 222.
Thamonpat Siriko of Bangkok, Thailand, took home the Girls Division title with an impressive 4-over-par 220 three-day total. Siriko showed resolve after playing holes Nos. 2-4 at 4-over-par, by making two birdies on the next five holes to steady her round.
Siriko set herself apart from the rest of the field with her stellar 2-under-par 70 during the second round. That round was four strokes better than the next best score that day. Siriko recorded four birdies during that round, eight total for the event, while shooting a front nine 3-under-par 33.
“I felt very nervous,” Siriko responded when asked about what it felt like to enter the final round with the lead. “Everyone told me that I can do it and to believe in myself. I needed to get confident to do my best.”
Finishing in second place were Kelly Whaley of Farmington, Conn., and Moyu Sasaki of Toyko, Japan. Both girls challenged Siriko throughout the final round but came up just short, finishing at 8-over-par 224 three-day total.
Sasaki and Isabella DiLisio of Hatfield, Pa., earned the KENTWOOL Socks Lo-Pro Award for their even-par 72s on Saturday.
Whaley took home the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award for her round of 3-over-par 75 on Monday.
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, KENTWOOL, 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
ORLANDO, Fla. – Final round results of the Bridgestone Golf Tournament of Champions conducted by the International Junior Golf Tour completed May 27, 2013. Boys 15-19 Division East/North Course: Gold Tees – 6,874 yards, Par 72 (74.4/137). Boys 14 & Under Division: Blue Tees – 6,269 yards, Par 72 (70.9/132). Girls Division: White Tees – 6,002 yards, Par 72 (75.8/136).