By: Haley Hodoval, AJGA Communications
AJGA alumnus and PGA TOUR legend, Phil Mickelson, finished T3 at the FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tennessee. Although Fabian Gomez was triumphant, Mickelson carded eight birdies in his final round en route to a tournament total 8-under-par 272. Fellow AJGA alumni, Michael Thompson and Brooks Koepka also finished T3, followed by Billy Horschel at T8.
On the LPGA TOUR, seven-time AJGA champion, Inbee Park, claimed her third victory at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, with a 19-under-par 273 at Westchester Country Club in Harrison, New York.
“It feels amazing,” Park said. “It feels amazing to win three times in a row. Obviously putting my name alongside Annika Sorenstam or Patty Berg, legends of golf, just being a part of history of this golf tournament, I feel extremely honored, and I can't believe that I just did it.”
South Korea’s Sei Young Kim finished five strokes behind Park with a 14-under-par 278 followed by three-time Rolex Junior All-American Lexi Thompson who finished with a 12-under-par 280. In total, six AJGA alumnae placed in the top 10 at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship.
For the third year in a row, Team USA was victorious at the Palmer Cup at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Illinois. The 10-man team, which included nine AJGA alumni, consisted of the nation’s best college players, five of whom qualified to play in the U.S. Open.
After Vanderbilt’s Hunter Stewart defeated Illinois’ Thomas Detry 4 and 3 in match play, Texas’ Beau Hossler and Georgia Tech’s Ollie Schniederjans’ nearly simultaneous wins clinched the victory for Team USA, who ultimately defeated Europe 18 – 12.
"One of the goals I'd set at the beginning of the year was to be here competing for my country," Hossler said. "You know you've had a solid year if you make the Palmer Cup team. It's a huge honor to play in this tournament.”
The AJGA was well represented at the Women’s Eastern Amateur Championship with three current players finishing in the top ten, including two-time Rolex Junior All-American Megan Khang who took home top honors.Khang defeated Mika Liu by six shots to win the tournament with a 4-under-par 209 at Lexington Golf & Country Club in Virginia.
The Rockland, Massachusetts, native led the tournament with a 4-under-par 67 and maintained the lead to finish with a 69.7 scoring average. Liu, who is No. 7 in the Polo Golf Rankings, finished with a 2-over 215 followed by Alice Chen, a rising sophomore at Furman University, who finished with a 5-over 218.
Adam Ball, Dylan Healey and Ben Schlottman were victorious on the men’s amateur circuit, each taking home top honors. Ball, a rising sophomore at Virginia Commonwealth University, won the 75th Monroe Invitational Championship. The Richmond, Virginia native finished with a final round 8-under-par 62, tying a tournament record with PGA TOUR player and AJGA alumnus, Dustin Johnson.
Auburn’s Schlottman, who was recently named a Golfweek All-American, won the 2015 Palmetto Amateur with a 8-under-par 272 at the Palmetto Golf Club in Aiken, South Carolina, defeating Clemson’s Billy Kennerly by two strokes. With a four-way tie for eighth, seven current and former AJGA players finished in the top 10.
Healey, a rising senior and recent transfer to Cal State San Marcos, played in his fourth Southwestern Amateur, ultimately leaving victorious after defeating Oklahoma State’s Hayden Wood in a single-hole playoff on No. 18. After Wood’s drive landed in the bunker, Healy holed a 12-foot putt to clinch the win.
"I joke with my caddy that I love the pressure moment," Healey said. "I finally had one and it was more than I can imagine. For that (putt) to go in was pretty sick."