IJGT ELITE: April 29, 2015

EliteShieldTemplate_NobackgroundIJGT ELITE News

April 21-28, 2015

This week was filled with NCAA conference championships, dramatic playoffs and exciting accolades for members of the IJGT ELITE.

Senior Trey Valentine and sophomore Rigel Fernandes helped the University of South Florida Bulls capture the 2015 American Athletic Conference crown. Valentine tied for third with a 7-under 209 tournament total. It was the team’s second conference championship in the past three seasons.

Freshman Chris Petefish counted in all three rounds of the 2015 Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Golf Championship, helping the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets win their 16th ACC golf crown.

The NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Regional Championships selections were announced live via the Golf Channel on Monday. Ana Ruiz (Oklahoma) and Erynne Lee (UCLA) found out their teams will be competing in the San Antonio regional in Texas. Karen Chung, Kyung Kim and Annie Park (all of USC) found out the Trojans will be competing in the St. George Regional in Utah. To view all of the selections, click here. Best of luck to all the IJGT alums competing in the four regional tournaments on May 7-9. These tournaments will determine the championship field. The NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Regional Championships selections will be announced live on the Golf Channel on Monday, May 4 at 10 a.m. ET.

Junior Pat Sanchez (Marquette) earned medalist honors at the Big East Men’s Golf Championship by carding a 1-under 215 tournament total. He fired a 3-under 69 in the final round of the event.

Temple University junior Brandon Matthews was named a PNC Bank Student-Athlete of the Year.

Sophomore Katie Rice and the women’s golf team earned the Team Academic Award at Morehead State for compiling a 3.72 team GPA in the fall.

And, on the LPGA Tour, Morgan Pressel carded an 8-under 280 tournament total to force a playoff in the Swinging Skirts Classic. She ended up finishing second. “I had plenty of chances out there today, so I can’t be too disappointed. I gave it my all,” Pressel said after the tournament.

Have a news tip about an IJGT alum? Let us know by sending an email to!

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.

Final Results from the Auntie Anne's Pretzels Junior at Shipyard Golf Club


Nimmer’s clutch birdie captures victory
Ruiz victorious in Girls Division

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) hosted the Auntie Anne’s Pretzels Junior this weekend at Shipyard Golf Club. Possible thunderstorms threatened play on Sunday, but the weather cooperated and the juniors enjoyed beautiful weather all weekend.

Bryson NimmerBryson Nimmer of Bluffton S.C., took home the Boys 15-19 Division title with a 1-over-par 145 two-day total. The leaderboard was packed going into the final round, but ultimately the tournament came down to the final hole with two of the KENTWOOL Low Pro winners—Nimmer, and second-place finisher Charlie Spencer-White, also from Bluffton, S.C., who were tied when teeing off on No. 18.

Both players left themselves with wedges for their third shots on the par-5 finishing hole. Spencer-White hit his approach to six feet while Nimmer hit his to about 12 feet. With Nimmer putting first, he was able to roll his putt in putting the pressure squarely on Spencer-White. Unfortunately Spencer-White was unable to convert giving Nimmer his first IJGT title this season.

“That shot I hit into 18 was really good,” said Nimmer. “Set me up for a birdie to win.”

Spencer-White’s solid play was good enough to earn him second place with a 2-over-par 146 two-day total. Rounding out the top three was Francisco Contreras from Caracas, Venezuela, whose final-round even-par 72 earned him the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award. His tournament total was a 3-over-par 147.

Taisuke OnoIn the Boys 14 Under Division, Taisuke Ono of Tokyo, Japan, came from three shots down to win the division by three strokes. Ono began his round with a bogey, making his comeback all the more difficult. However, he was able to steady the ship with four straight pars. Aided by a birdie on the difficult par-3 8th hole, Ono played steady golf to charge his comeback efforts. He was able to close out his round with another four-hole par streak while everyone else faltered.

Coming in second place was Paul Schumacher of Canton, Ohio, who carded a two-day total of 161. He was able to lock up second place by playing the final six holes in even par after a shaky stretch in the middle of the round. In third place, shooting a 162 tournament total was Jan Schneider of Erlangen, Germany. Schneider tore up the par 3s on Sunday, playing the four in 2-under-par.

Ana RuizAna Ruiz of Chihuahua, Mexico, was the only player this weekend to record an under- par round, giving her the crown in the Girls Division. Ruiz’s opening-round 1-under-par 71 gave her a five-shot cushion entering the final round. After a string of eight pars in a row on the front nine, she birdied Nos.10 and 11 to get into red figures. Ruiz was able to add two more birdies on the back nine adding to her lead.

“I hit the ball really well,” Ruiz said after her round. “I hit a lot of greens and gave myself a lot of opportunities for birdies.

Ruiz continued her stellar play in the final round, recording back-to-back birdies on holes Nos.7 and 8 on her way to a 2-over-par 74 to win the division by seven strokes. A testament to her great ball striking was her play on the par 3s for the tournament, playing them in 1-under-par over the weekend.

In addition to her victory, Ruiz was awarded both KENTWOOL Low Pro and Clazic Belts Low Final Round Awards.

Phyllis Tang of Hong Kong, China and Rei Nakatani of Tokyo, Japan tied for second place with 152 tournament totals. Although the scores were the same, the two played quite differently. Tang recorded three birdies in her final six holes to surge into the top three while Nakatani was a model of consistency all weekend.

The IJGT Southeast tour will be hosting another tournament on Hilton Head Island, S.C., the IJGT AHEAD Open at Bear Creek Golf Club, May 4-5. To sign up for this Event, or others, visit or call (843) 785-2444.


About Auntie Anne’s

Twenty-five years after Anne and Jonas Beiler stumbled across their original pretzel perfection, guests are still enjoying Auntie Anne’s Pretzel products, dipping sauces, and signature beverages in more than 1,330 locations in 46 states and 25 countries. Auntie Anne’s stands out from its competitors due to its unwavering commitment to extending the brand, successful growth, and providing continued value to customers. Auntie Anne’s has built its brand on the foundations of the people-focused philosophies established by its founder, quality products, exceptional guest service, attractive and efficient stores, and the fun activity of pretzel making. Over the years, Auntie Anne’s has rolled approximately 1.7 billion pretzels.


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 or call (843) 785-2444


HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – Final round results of the IJGT Auntie Anne’s Pretzels Junior conducted by the International Junior Golf Tour completed April 28, 2013. Boys 15-19 Division: Gold Tees – 6,872 yards, Par 72 (74.0/133).  Boys 14 Under Division: Blue Tees – 6,258 yards, Par 72 (71.2/128) Girls Division: White Tees – 5,971 yards, Par 72 (74.7/126).


Weather:  Sunny with temperatures in the Mid 70s, winds 5-10 mph

Sunny with temperatures in the Mid to High 70s, winds 3-5 mph


International Junior Golf Tour
Auntie Anne’s Pretzels Junior at Shipyard – Galleon/Clipper
Hilton Head Island, S.C.
April 27-28, 2013
Boys 15-19 Division – (Gold Tees) Yards: 6,872, Par 72
1 Bryson Nimmer, Bluffton, SC *72-73–145
2. Charlie Spencer-White, Bluffton, SC *72-74–146
3. Francisco Contreras, Caracas, Venezuela *75-72–147
4. Alan Cooke, Vienna, WV *74-74–148
5. Owen Miller, Burgettstown, PA *76-75–151
5. Manuel Velez, Panama City, Panama *73-78–151
7. Shogo Ito, Tokyo, Japan *76-77–153
7. Bryan Gagnon, Culver City, CA *77-76–153
9. Chang Ju Lee, Seoul, South Korea *75-79–154
10. Konstantin Kosta Kosutic, Belgrade, Serbia *80-76–156
10. Mos Bangpetch, Hilton Head Island, SC *78-78–156
10. Matthew Mannion, Muskoka, ON *75-81–156
13. Taiga Fujii, Toyama-shi, Japan *78-79–157
14. Nicco Gentile, Bluffton, SC *79-79–158
15. Lohith Ramaraju, London, England *76-83–159
16. Gus Uriostegui, Leon, Mexico *81-79–160
16. Connor Hogan, Monroeville, AL *79-81–160
16. Sense Chaowalit, Bangkok, Thailand *76-84–160
19. Yong Sherng Hui, Taman Dagang, Malaysia *78-83–161
20. Brian Baker, Pittsburgh, PA *83-79–162
21. Andrew Boyer, Muskoka, ON *85-80–165
21. Shogo Taniguchi, Osaka, Japan *87-78–165
21. Peter Kelesis, Las Vegas, NV *82-83–165
24. Nate Anderson, Billings, MT *82-84–166
24. Daniel Tello Vargas, Pachuca, Mexico *82-84–166
26. Drew Poland, Johnson City, TN *82-88–170
27. Jack Klein, Bethesda, MD *87-84–171
28. Kevin Reich, Winterthur, Switzerland *89-89–178
29. William Dunn III, Lancaster, PA *94-85–179
30. Guodong Ji, Quing Dao, China *96-87–183
Tyler Pidduck, Thousand Oaks, *DQ (Rule 6-6d)
Boys 14 Under Division – (Blue Tees) Yards: 6,258 Par 72
1. Taisuke Ono, Tokyo, Japan *80-78–158
2. Paul Schumacher, Canton, OH *80-81–161
3. Jan Schneider, Erlangen, Germany *80-82–162
4. Christian Clemence Tupamahu, Manado, Indonesia *77-92–169
5. Kotaro Nishimura, Ota-Ku, Japan *94-95–189
6. Jacob Morris, Hollywood, SC *94-98–192
Girls Division – (White Tees) Yards: 5,971 Par 72
1. Ana Ruiz, Chihuahua, Mexico *71-74–145
2. Phyllis Tang, Hong Kong, China *76-76–152
2. Rei Nakatani, Tokyo, Japan *75-77–152
4. Ayaka Nakayama, Kanagawa, Japan *79-76–155
5. Laura Gonzalez, Bogota, Colombia *82-76–158
6. Cake Phuchanbanchob, Chiang Mai, Thailand *78-81–159
6. Bria` Sanders, Cordova, TN *76-83–159
8. Aracelly Maria Jimenez Rios, Merida, Mexico *80-80–160
8. Susana Reyes Ramirez, Ibague, Colombia *79-81–160
10. Maggie Ashmore, Kingston, GA *82-83–165
11. Kasidy Beckel, Bluffton, SC *80-87–167
12. Sera Tadokoro, Izumisano-Shi, Japan *83-87–170
13. Ariana Dial, Clarksville, MD *88-83–171
14. Yuki Nakayama, Kawasakishi, Japan *95-97–192
Ceha Lee, Bundang-Gu, South Korea *DQ (Rule 6-6d)
Dylaney Day, Toronto, ON *90-JWD