IJGT gears up for a weekend of northeast events

With the 2014-2015 season underway, the IJGT Northeast will continue its tour hosting two tournaments at two great venues!

The IJGT will continue the Northeast Tour with The Architects Cup presented by IJGA held at the Architects Golf Club on October 4-5, 2014. Juniors will play 18-holes on both Saturday and Sunday competing for IJGT merit points and national rankings.

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Architects Club

Located in Lopatcong, N.J., the Architects Golf Club is a par-71 course that honors some of golf’s greats at every hole including A.W. Tillinghast, Donald Ross and Alister MacKenzie. It also has earned many achievements including being voted “#3 Best Public Courses in NJ in 2013″ by NJ Monthly and “# 4 Best Public Course in NJ in 2012″ by Golf Magazine. This IJGT tour stop is recognized as one the most challenging, scenic and historically significant courses in the northeast.

Playing in The Architects Cup for the second consecutive year, keep an eye on Ryan Skae of Old Tappan, N.J., looking to improve upon his fourth-place finish in the 2013-2014 season. In the Girls Division, be sure to watch for Madison Braman of Loudonville, N.Y. Madison is recently took second in the IJGT Jersey Open at Buena Vista tournament on September 20-21, 2014.

In addition to The Architects Cup presented by IJGA, the IJGT Northeast Tour will also host the DC Shootout at National Golf Club on October 4-5, 2014. This two-day event will include 18-holes to be played on Saturday and Sunday. Juniors will compete for IJGT merit points and national rankings.

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National Golf Club

If you appreciate a classic tree-lined course design in PGA Tour quality condition then it just doesn’t get any better than National Golf Club. The bent grass tees, fairways and greens and with the rough having three distinct cuts gives the feel tour players experience every day. This challenging course never plays quite the same from day to day. Golfers will be challenged to use every club in their bag and pick and choose their angles on the course.

Playing in his second tournament of the 2014-2015 season, keep an eye on Blake Hinckley of Kennett Square, Pa., who looks to improve on his fourth-place finish from the IJGT Philly Open at Radley Run Country Club.

To register or for more information about The Architects Cup presented by IJGA, click here.

To register for or for more information about the DC Shootout at National Golf Club, click here.

To register for other upcoming events, call (843) 686-1508.

Phuchanbanchob, Gai among those receiving IJGT Player of the Week honors – Sept. 21, 2014


The IJGT’s Northeast Tour traveled to the Buena Vista Country Club in Buena, N.J., to host the IJGT Jersey Open. Weather for the event was ideal with temperatures in the high 70s and calm winds. Despite near-perfect playing conditions, the golf course was challenging nonetheless with unforgiving bunkers and many dog-legs. The IJGT is proud to award this week’s Northeast Player of the Week honors to Stephen Gai of Westport, Conn., and Madison Braman of Loudonville, N.Y.

gaiGai may not have opened the tournament with his best round, but he bounced back in round two. He posted a 78 in the second round, improving on his first round by nine strokes. Gai carded his 78 with the help of 10 pars and two birdies on holes No. 7 and 15. Gai’s 78 was the third best round of the day in the Boys 15-19 Division. His impressive play in the final round drove him up the leaderboard to finish in a tie for fifth with Marshall Clemens from Weston, Mass.



braman, madisonBraman’s first round play had her in pursuit of a comeback on divisional leader Linda Wang. Wang’s steady play in the final round kept Braman just out of reach, but Braman fought until the end which helped her earn the Northeast’s Girls’ Player of the Week honors. In the second round, Braman began with a birdie on her first hole of the day. She added two more birdies on her back nine on holes No. 12 and 14, and posted par on eight additional holes. Her spectacular play resulted in a final round 77, which also earned her the Clazic Belts Low Final Round award in the division.


The IJGT held its first College Series Tournament of the 2014-15 season at Lonnie Poole Golf Course at North Carolina State University the weekend of September 21-22, 2014, as part of the Southeast Tour.  The Golfweek No. 27 ranked campus course in 2014, played tough during round one but allowed juniors to shine most in round two. Following the event, Ryan Pongrac of Freehold, N.J., and Cake Phuchanbanchob of Chiang Mai, Thailand, earned the Southeast’s Player of the Week honors.

pongrac - CopyAfter shooting a final round score of 3-under 69, Pongrac earns this week’s Southeast Player of the Week honors in the boys divisions. Pongrac got off to a slow start in round one, but bounced back by shooting an 85 in round two including four birdies on his front nine and two more on the back.  Pongrac’s second round 69 gave him a share of the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award and a top-10 finish.




10264779_10154171553715026_2741195399204324369_nPhuchanbanchob nabbed Player of the Week in the Girls Division.  She got off to a hot start on day two, making a run at the championship with three birdies and an eagle to finish her round with a 2-under 70 which was also the low round for the tournament in the Girls Division.

Phuchanbanchob’s stellar final round was enough to force a sudden death playoff with Kelly Whaley of Farmington, Conn., starting on par-5, No. 1.  The two played hole No. 1 and Phuchanbanchob’s unfavorable drive off the tee landed her left of the fairway, while Whaley bombed her drive down the right side landing it in the rough just off of the fairway.  Phuchanbanchob was forced to lay up to the 150-yard mark just on top of the hill giving her a desirable angle into the green. Whaley played her second through two tall trees landing her just short of the greenside bunker.  Whaley chipped up onto the green within ten feet of the flagstick, while Phuchanbanchob’s chip was not enough to rally for the win. Nonetheless, Phuchanbanchob’s effort was enough for second and Player of the Week honors.

The IJGT wishes our four outstanding juniors the best of luck in their future competitions and we look forward to seeing them soon!

Jersey Open at Buena Vista Country Club – Final results

Benevento is on the mark as he wins the Jersey Open

Wang earns first career victory in Girls Division

BUENA, N.J. –The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) hosted the Jersey Open at Buena Vista Country Club on September 20-21, 2014. The event was the third tournament of the Northeast Tour and the first of two in New Jersey for the 2014-2015 season. Each junior competed for IJGT Merit Points, national rankings and an invite to the IJGT’s Bridgestone Golf Tournament of Champions to be played at Grand Cypress Resort on May 23-25, 2014.

Benevento Buena VistaMark Benevento from Somers Pt., N.J., the winner of the Boys 15-19 Division, led from the start. His opening round of 77 set the pace from the beginning and he never looked back.  He set the tone right away in the final round as he birdied the first hole of the day. Over the course of the tournament, Benevento made six birdies and 20 pars.

The New Jersey native stated, “Coming into today I just wanted to hit fairways and keep it in play.”

Benevento had to be on his game, because Nick Rencis of Long Valley, N.J., shot a very impressive round on a difficult golf course.  For his second round, Rencis shot a 75, two off the pace from Benevento.  Overall, Rencis shot a 157, to finish in second place.  He made his charge on round two with four birdies to lead the division for the day. Liam McGrath of Huntingdon Valley, Pa., took third place with a tournament total of 160.

Sample Buena VistaLuke Sample from New York, N.Y., took the first-place trophy home in the Boys 14 & Under Division after shooting a two-day total of 167.  His opening round of 82 led the Boys 14 & Under Division, and Sample closed it out with a score of 85 on the last day.  Sample had 17 pars which was the most in the division.

“The course was in great shape,” commented Sample in his post-round interview.

Simon Asadoorian resident of Richboro, Pa., finished in second place.  He improved on his opening round score by two strokes to shoot a tournament total of 178. Third place went to Rich Jones of Moriches, N.Y., who finished with a tournament total of 197.

In the Girls Divison, Linda Wang of Fresh Meadows, N.Y., shot the best round out of any player in the tournament by shooting an opening-round even-par 72.  Wang had 26 pars and four birdies for the tournament to give her the win at Buena Vista Country Club.

Wang Buena VistaWang attributed her solid play to her putting.

“I wanted to come out here today and make putts,” said Wang.

The best round on day two, went to Madison Braman from Loudonville, N.Y.  She shot a second-round score of 77, which earned her second place. Braman had three birdies on the day, including a span of two birdies in three holes.  Wang opening round par was too much for Braman to overcome as she won the tournament by seven strokes. Micaela Crines of Wall, N.J., finished in third place with a tournament total of 178.
All three players wanted to thank the staff and the competetors after the round was over.

“Without the other competitors this tournamnet would not happen and I want to thank them, I really enjoyed playing this course,” said a happy Wang after the tournament was over.

The IJGT Northeast Tour will head to Brook Lea Country Club for the IJGT Upstate Challenge. To sign up for this event, or others, visit 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, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, Kiawah Island Resort, and Harbour Town Golf Links.  Official partners of the IJGT include Bridgestone Golf, Bagboy, CHAMP Spikes, Clazic Belts, AB Golf Designs, The First Tee, Golfweek, morodZ, PURE Grips, and the International Junior Golf Academy.

To obtain more information about the IJGT, please visit or call (800) 792-9143.

Buena, N.J. – Final Results of the Jersey Open at Buena Vista Country Club conducted by the International Junior Golf Tour on September 20-21, 2014. Boys 15-19 Division: Black Tees – 6,970 yards, Par 72 (74.3/133). Boys 14 & Under Division: White Tees – 6,290 yards, Par 72 (70.3/127). Girls Division: Green Tees – 5,979 yards, Par 72 (74.4/129).

International Junior Golf Tour
IJGT Jersey Open at Buena Vista Country Club
Buena, N.J.
September 20-21, 2014
Boys 15-19 Division- Black Tees, 6,970 yards, Par 72
1. Mark Benevento, Somers Pt., NJ *77-73–150
2. Nick Rencis, Long Valley, NJ *82-75–157
3. Liam McGrath, Huntingdon Valley, PA *78-82–160
4. Gregory Szrom, Egg Harbor Township, NJ *79-83–162
5. Stephen Gai, Westport, CT *87-78–165
5. Marshall Clemens, Weston, MA *85-80–165
7. Ryan Zinsky, Voorhees, NJ *83-83–166
8. Thomas Dzwonczyk, North Abington Township, PA *89-86–175
9. Luke Sliwowski, Sewell, NJ *89-87–176
10. Jake Ferry, Wildwood Crest, NJ *91-89–180
11. Jake Sitzler, Burlington, NJ *97-89–186
12. Adam Asadoorian, Richboro, PA *118-97–215

Boys 14 & Under Division- White Tees, 6,290 yards, Par 72
1. Luke Sample, New York, NY *82-85–167
2. Simon Asadoorian, Richboro, PA *90-88–178
3. Rich Jones, Moriches, NY *94-103–197
4. Mason Asadoorian, Richboro, PA *109–107–216

Girls Division- Green Tees, 5,979 yards, Par 72
1. Linda Wang, Fresh Meadows, NY *72-80–152
2. Madison Braman, Loudonville, NY *82-77–159
3. Micaela Crines, Wall, NJ *89-89–178
4. Michelle Krameisen, Spring Lake, NJ *102-99–201


Braman featured in the IJGT Photo of the Week – September 4, 2014

In the inaugural tournament of the 2014 fall season, the IJGT traveled to fan-favorite Hershey Country Club to host the Labor Day Classic on August 30-31. Warm temperatures and sunny skies combined for ideal golf conditions as a field of more than 40 juniors competed for national rankings and IJGT Merit Points.

PH of week 9.4.14

The fans have spoken and this week’s Photo of the Week features Madison Braman of Loudonville, N.Y. Her sixth place finish at Hershey becomes her 11th top-10 finish in her IJGT career. Scores of 84 and 82 combined for a two-day total of 166 for Braman who’s performance was highlighted by 17 pars across two rounds.

Congratulations to Braman on being chosen for the first Photo of the Week of the 2014 fall season!

Don’t forget – each week we have a Photo of the Week and it could be you! Be sure to check the IJGT Facebook after each event. Like, share and comment on your favorite photos and based on the point system below, the photo with the most points will then be featured as that week’s Photo of the Week!

1 point – per ‘Like’
2 points – per comment (let’s keep these positive!)
3 points – per share

The Final Challenge at Hershey Links

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.

The Upstate Challenge at Locust Hill Preview

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) will be headed to upstate New York for The Upstate Challenge at Locust Hill Country Club on September 28-29. Located in Pittsford, Locust Hill will be hosting its first IJGT Event. Top junior golfers from around the Northeast will be competing for national rankings and IJGT Merit Points.

Locust Hill is a private country club only five miles southeast from the city of Rochester. Seymour Dunn designed the course and it has been open since 1927. Locust Hill is an annual stop on the LPGA Tour, as they have hosted an event every year since 1977. From 2010-2013, Locust Hill was the site of the LPGA Championship, one of five major championships on the LPGA Tour. The 18-hole championship course plays as a par 72, with four sets of tees ranging from 5,628 yards to 6,615 yards.


In the Boys 15-19 Division, William Thomson hopes to earn the victory in his home town. Thomson starred in the 2012-13 season, winning four events and finishing no lower than a tie for 9th in 14 events in the Boys 14 & Under Division. Thomson was the IJGT Boys 14 & Under National Player of the Year last season and has elected to move up to the 15-19 Division. This will be Thomson’s first IJGT Event of the 2013-14 season. Kevin Borowicz of Grand Island, N.Y., had a strong showing at The Upstate Challenge at Timber Banks last season, finishing 5th. Borowicz played in The Labor Day Classic at Hershey CC, finishing 14th. Jack Gianniny of Rochester, N.Y., was able to qualify for the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship this season and hopes to build off that performance. A number of players will be playing in their first IJGT Event including Nicklaus Curry of Cranberry Township, Pa., Evan Gaesser of Kendall, N.Y., and Colin Patrick of Newtown, Conn.

Sarah Bothner of Rochester, N.Y., won The Upstate Challenge last season, carding a final round 76 on her way to victory. Bothner played at Hershey CC earlier this season, finishing 5th, and she’ll be looking to defend her championship at Locust Hill. Bothner will face a number of challengers including Madison Braman of Loudonville, Pa., Chelsea Dantonio of Lancaster, N.Y., and Allyson Wentworth of Stewartsville, N.J. Braman is coming off a 5th place finish at the IJGT Philly Open at Jeffersonville, while Dantonio placed 4th at Hershey, and Wentworth was 6th at the Major Championship at Crystal Springs.

Danny Gianniny of Rochester, N.Y., and Chang Hyun Park of Pittsford, N.Y., highlight the Boys 14 & Under Division. Gianniny had two top-10 finishes last season, including a 4th place finish at the IJGT Junior at Wintonbury Hills. Gianniny has yet to play in an IJGT Event this season. Park will be making his IJGT debut and looks to make his trip to Locust Hill memorable.

IJGT hosts three Labor Day Weekend Events

The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) is set to host three tournament events over the Labor Day Weekend.  The first of those events is the Lowcountry Open at Oldfield Golf Club in scenic Okatie, South Carolina.

The home of the Lowcountry’s first Greg Norman designed golf course, Oldfield is known for its towering pine and oak trees as well as being a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.

In the Boys 15-19 division, Germany’s Jan Schnieder takes a step up in competition while hoping to continue his success after winning two events along with four additional top- five finishes in the Boys 14 & Under Division last season. He will be challenged by Japan’s Shota Ozaki, who tasted victory at last year’s Georgia Open at Savannah Quarters.

In the Girls division, Japan’s Sera Tadokoro looks to build upon her win at last season’s IJGT Junior at Oyster Reef.

Oldfield Golf Course

Oldfield Golf Course.

The IJGT returns to Hershey Country Club in Hershey, Pennsylvania for the Labor Day Classic at the East Course. Designed by George Fazio, the East Course is known for its elevated greens and vast number of bunkers that total over 100 in all.

The competition at the Labor Day Classic will be fierce, especially in the Boys 15-19 division. The division is highlighted by two golfers moving up from the Boys 14 & Under level in Thomas Dzwoncyzk and Gus Minkin.

Dzwoncyzk hopes to finally come out on top after four top-five finishes in his seven tour appearances last season, while Minkin won the College Classic at Penn State during the 2012-2013 season. He also accumulated six additional top-five finishes during the season.

In the Boys 14 & Under division, C.J. Hughes plans on continuing his success after recording a win at the Bridgestone Series at Longaberger event last season.  Hughes also tallied two top-five finishes and three top-ten finishes last season. Battling Hughes will be Evan Katz, who won last year’s IJGT Major Championship at Hershey.

The Girls division features a number of golfers who had success on the tour last season. Madison Braman posted two top-fives and two top tens, while Audrey Clawson had one top-five and two-top ten finishes in her three tour events. Allyson Wentworth also will be in the mix after posting one top-five and four top-ten finishes last season.

Lacey Bensing returns after posting a fourth-place finish in last season’s Labor Day Classic at Hershey.

18th hole at Hershey Country Club East Course.

Hershey Country Club East Course.

The final IJGT event of the weekend is the West Coast Kickoff at TPC Scottsdale in Scottsdale, Arizona on September 1-2.

TPC Scottsdale plays host to the PGA TOUR’S Waste Management Phoenix Open, and features two fantastic courses that are open to the public year round. The Stadium Course is maintained at a PGA TOUR level year round, and is best known for “the Coliseum” at the 16th hole during the Waste Management Open.

The Champions Course is the newer of the two, having been built it in 2007. It is known for its rugged terrain, and a multitude of ravines and picturesque foothills throughout the course.

In the Boys 15-19 division, Phoenix native Jackson Whisenhunt looks to impress in his hometown after a top-five finish at last season’s PURE Grips Shootout at Troon North.

In the Boys 14 & Under division, Hawaii’s Adam Quant will try and repeat his tour success from last season, where he had a top-five finish in his lone tour appearance at the PURE Grips Shootout at Troon North.

The 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale's Stadium Course.

The 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale’s Stadium Course.