Sunday Showcase Provides Fireworks at Savannah Harbor For Faldo Series Georgia Championship
Comeback Winners, and Sudden-Death Playoffs create an action-packed Sunday for first stage of U.S. Grand Final Qualifying
Savannah, GA: The second event of the 2019 calendar year for the International Junior Golf Tour took center stage over this late February weekend, as the playing of the Faldo Series Georgia Championship was contested at The Club at Savannah Harbor. Over 90 of the best junior golfers from across the country and world gathered in the “Hostess City of the South” to earn a chance to qualify for the 3rd annual Faldo Series U.S. Grand Final, which will be played in late 2019 at Bella Collina Golf Club (Montverde, FL).
Over the weekend, players also competed for national rankings, such as Junior Golf Scoreboard, Global Junior Golf Rankings, and Golfweek, as well as IJGT Merit points.
In the 4-separate competing age divisions, there were high stakes and even higher drama in each competition. From the opening tee-shot, to the final putt, which for two divisions would need more than 36-holes, a select group of players walked away punching their ticket to the 2019 U.S. Grand Final.
In the Boys 19U Division, it was a marvelous Sunday showing by Eloy Vigil who put together a low final round of 67 (5-under Par) to cap off the weekend victory. Vigil, a native of Mexico and current student at Bishops Gate Golf Academy (BGGA), opened his weekend on Saturday with an even-Par 72, trailing 4-shots only off the lead. The two round total of 139 (5-Under Par) secures Vigil’s first victory in IJGT competition, and clinches a spot in the 2019 Faldo Series U.S. Grand Final.
Tying for second-place are Erik Fogel and Ty Sullivan with total scores of 142 respectively. Fogel, a native of Stockholm, Sweden and now current student at the International Junior Golf Academy (IJGA), had a stellar weekend with rounds of 68 and 74. Sullivan, a student at the Junior Players Golf Academy of Hilton Head (JPGA) and former Toronto, Canada resident, finished off the weekend with consecutive rounds of 71. Sullivan is committed to play college golf at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV).
In the Boys 16U Division, it was another Sunday comeback to secure victory, as Jantai Malataev showed great poise in securing his first victory in IJGT competition. The current IJGA student by way of Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan put together rounds of 69 and 73 for a two-round total of 142 (2-under Par). With the win, Malataev earns automatic invitation to the 2019 Faldo Series U.S. Grand Final.
Finishing in second place in the Boys 16U Division is JeongJoo Kim. After rounds of 70 and 75 each, the current IJGA student and former resident of Yongin, South Korea finishes the weekend with a final tally of 145. Rounding out the top-three is Patrick Sun of Dalian, China. Sun, who is also a current student at IJGA, showed great discipline in tough conditions, finishing with rounds of 73 and 74, for a total score of 147.
In the two-final competitions on Sunday, both Girls Division winners would ultimately need a sudden-death playoff to secure victory at the Faldo Series Georgia Championship.
In the Girls 19U contest, Katharina Hesse drained a big Par-putt on the opening sudden-death playoff hole to secure her first ever IJGT victory. Hesse, of Bremen, Germany and a current student at JPGA of Hilton Head, also used a comeback on Sunday to step into the winner’s circle, firing a 72 to pair with her opening round of 74. Hesse has signed her Letter of Intent at Rollins College.
Finishing in second-place for the Girls 19U is Sophia Burnett. The local standout of Bluffton, SC had an impressive weekend once again, finishing with rounds of 70 and 76 for a two-round total of 146. Rounding out the top-three is Hannah Conroy of Cheswick, PA. Conroy, who is also a current student at JPGA of Hilton Head, finishes off the weekend with a total score of 153.
And in the final competition of the weekend, 36-holes was simply not enough to decide the winner of the Girls 16U Division. After a successful Par putt on the first playoff-hole, Maria Fedorowycz claimed victory for the first time in her IJGT career, and secures a spot in the 2019 Faldo Series U.S. Grand Final.
The native of Kyiv, Ukraine and current student at BGGA, Fedorowycz battled the elements on her way to her first victory, shooting scores of 73 and 81 on Sunday.
Finishing closely in second-place is One Kashima of Tochigi, Japan. The current IJGA student played steady rounds with scores of 77 on her way to her second-place finish, and clinching a spot in the 2019 U.S. Grand Final. Rounding out the top-three is Emma Kim. The former native of South Korea and current IJGA student, Kim ends the weekend with rounds of 76 and 82.
The next stop for the IJGT will be with the playing of the South Carolina Open at Crescent Pointe Golf Club (Bluffton, SC). The next Faldo Series Qualifying opportunity for players when the IJGT treks north, as the playing of the Faldo Series Pennsylvania Championship will be contested at White Manor Coutnry Club (Malvern, PA). To view the full upcoming schedule for the IJGT, follow the link here.
The Faldo Series hosts 35 annual tournaments in 30 countries worldwide, and has set the stage for junior golfers internationally to compete in high stakes competition against the best players in the world. Through this partnership, IJGT and the Faldo Series are giving North American junior golfers the opportunity to put themselves on the map with the best players in the world.
Final Results of the Faldo Series Georgia Championship at the Club at Savannah Harbor were conducted by the International Junior Golf Tour on February 24, 2019.