HERSHEY, Pa. – The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) stopped in Hershey, Pa., on Aug. 31-Sept. 1, 2013 for the Labor Day Classic at Hershey Country Club. Hershey Country Club’s East Course has hosted numerous national events ranging from the NCAA Division II Men’s Golf Championship to the Web.com Tour’s Reese’s Cup Classic. The firm greens on the East Course proved to be a challenge for the players on their approach shots; however there were still birdies to be made. Our Players of the week C.J. Hughes and Frida Henningsson of battled it out over the two-day event for a strong showing in the elite field.
C.J. Hughes, from Indiana, Pa., put together an impressive tournament to be named our Boys Player of the Week. Even though Hughes came in second in the Boys 14 & Under Division with a two-day total of 155, he was able to bounce back from an 85 on the first day to fire a 1-under-par 70 on the second day in the tough East Course conditions at Hershey Country Club. Hughes had an up and down front nine of four birdies and three bogeys and then followed with a smoother back nine of one birdie and one bogey. An improvement of 15 stokes over the two rounds made him the comeback player of the tournament. Finishing near the top is familiar territory for Hughes and we look to his continued success in upcoming IJGT tournaments this fall.
Frida Henningsson of Rye, N.Y., made a grand entrance in her first IJGT event by posting a two-day total of 156 and finishing in second place. On the way to her first round 76, Henningsson made a spectacular par save by holing out from the drop-zone on the par-4 18th hole. Henningsson is no stranger to competition as she has won events in both Sweden and the U.S. prior to her debut with the IJGT. During the winter months you can find Henningsson on the slopes competing in alpine skiing events. One thing is for certain, she will definitely be one to watch next week as the IJGT moves to Crystal Springs Resort for the Major Championship.
The International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) hosted the Lowcountry Open this past weekend at Oldfield Golf Club in Okatie, S.C. The tournament consisted of 47 contestants who competed upon Oldfield’s difficult course conditions, with fast greens and strategically placed bunkers. Karl Vilips of Melbourne, Australia, and Sera Tadokoro of Osaka, Japan, both have received Player of the Week honors for the Southeast Region.
Vilips, a 12-year old in the Boys 14 & Under Division shows a lot of talent around the golf course. If you asked him how his first round went on Saturday however, he didn’t seem pleased. A 9-over-par 81 for his first round put Vilips 14 shots behind leader Takafumi Shimoji of Miyakojima-shi, Japan. Vilips made the risky change of using his old driver on Sunday and it paid off, hitting nearly every fairway during the final round. Through the first nine holes, Vilips was 3-under par and made every green in regulation. He rounded out his final round by shooting 2-under-par 70, and received the Clazic Belt Low Final Round Award for the Boys 14 & Under Division. Vilips ended the tournament 7-over-par and remains a tough competitor in the upcoming events.
Tadokoro finished her first round with a score of 6-over-par 78, putting her seven shots back of leader Isidora Quevedo, of Santiago, Chile. Sera started her final round off a little rocky, double bogeying No. 2. She then went on to par the next five holes, bouncing back with a birdie on the 480-yard par 5, No. 8. By the numbers, Tadokoro made 3 birdies and 10 pars during the final round, posting a final round score of 4-over-par 76, receiving a second place finish overall in the Girls Division. Tadokoro has finished back-to-back Events finishing in the Top 3. We look forward to witnessing more golf from her this 2013-2014 season.
West Coast Tour
The West Coast Kickoff at TPC Scottsdale, held Sept. 1-2, started the International Junior Golf Tour’s (IJGT) fall season out west. A new event for the IJGT, players this week competed on the famous TPC Scottsdale Stadium Course, host to the Waste Management Open earlier this year, as well as the Champions Course. With abnormal humidity, players fought off 100+ degree weather over Labor Day Weekend for merit points with the IJGT.
Coming in second in the Boys 14 & Under Division was Mikee Ordona, who is one of our two Players of the Week. Ordona’s first round featured 11 pars for an opening 9-over par 80. In the second round Ordona carded a birdie on the par-3 13th and finished just three strokes back with a score of 164 for the week.
Sam McKay is also featured as Player of the Week, after finishing in a tie for second with a 10-over par 152 in the Boys 15-19 Division. McKay’s first round featured birdies on holes Nos. 4, 8, 13 and 15 leading to a score of 1-over-par 72 and the KENTWOOL Lo-Pro Award. In the second round, McKay reeled off six consecutive pars on the front side with another birdie on No. 13.
Both McKay and Ordona are return performers out on the West Coast tour and we look forward to seeing them compete again when the IJGT returns out west.