By: Ian Yelton, AJGA Communications
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Preseason Junior at Innisbrook was a 36-hole stroke play competition played on the par-70 North Course at Innisbrook Resort & Golf Club. The event featured 72 boys and 24 girls, ages 12-18, from 19 states, and four countries. The Boys Division played the course at 6,042 yards while the Girls Division played the course at 5,582 yards.
For a full recap of the tournament, click here.
Masters Connection: Tony Jiang, medalist in the Boys Division, watched the Masters closely as most of the juniors did over the weekend. Jiang, however, was not just watching because it was the first major of the season, or to see how Tiger would bounce back. Jiang was watching for a close friend. That friend just so happened to be 14-year-old Chinese phenom Tianlang Guan, the youngest player to ever compete and make the cut in Masters history.
“I want to try and reach my friend in The Masters, Tianlang Guan," said Jiang. "We practice together and he is one of my best friends. I want to try and beat him later and play with him in The Masters.”
One thing Jiang has that Guan doesn't... An AJGA victory. Guan's best finish in an AJGA event was T2 at the 2012 AJGA Junior Open at The Legends.
International Presence: Thus far in the 2013 season, 10 of the 26 medalists in AJGA events have been from a country other than the United States. This week's champions at Innisbrook, Tony Jiang (China) and Mami Yamamoto (Japan) became the second group of international players to earn medalist honors at the same tournament in 2013. In January, Carl Yuan (China) and Rose Huang (China) both were victorious at the Junior All-Star at Mission Inn, which also took place in Florida.
These Shoes Were Made For Golfing: Summer Moser of Lutz, Fla., shows off her hand painted Footjoy's at the Care for the Course party. Moser and her mom hand paint each pair of golf shoes she owns. She said the tradition started after her golf coach showed her how she painted her own as well. She finished T4 in the event.
To view more photos from the tournament, click here.