CALIFORNIA CAPTURES FIRST  PGA JUNIOR LEAGUE GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPCHICAGO, Ill. Just a week before the 39th Ryder Cup will be contested in the Chicago area, a group of junior golfers from California (San Francisco) won the first-ever PGA Junior League Golf Championship at Cog Hill Golf & Country Club Sunday (Sept. 16).

California was the only undefeated team in the two-day, three-match Championship with teams from Georgia, Florida, New Jersey, Texas and Illinois also competing.  The Final saw two undefeated teams playing for the Championship, with California besting Georgia 8.5 – 3.5.  

The Florida All-Star team had representation from the SFPGA Junior Tour, including: Michael Checo, Justin Cao,  Matthew Glenn, Sarah Noonan, and Griffin Thompson.

“We offer congratulations to not only the team from California but to all of the teams,” said PGA of America President Allen Wronowski. “The PGA of America is proud to bring this recreational youth sports team concept to golf. This was an incredible finale to a great first year, and we look forward to engaging many more young golfers next year.”

Coordinated by The PGA of America and LEJ Sports, PGA Junior League Golf (www.PGAJrLeagueGolf.com) is a new team concept for aspiring young golfers, ages 7-13, similar to “Little League Baseball.” More than 1,800 children competed on more than 120 teams from 22 markets in league play this summer. Five Regional champions, plus the Illinois team (host market), advanced to the championship.

Each team played three head-to-head matches with the Championship decided by the team with the best overall record:

Champion:     California (San Francisco) 3-0        Captain Andy Nisbet, PGA                      29 Points

2nd                  Georgia (Atlanta)               2-1        Captain Chuck Scoggins, PGA                 23 Points

3rd                   Texas (Houston)                2-1        Captain Aurora Kirchner-McClain, PGA  18 Points

4th                   Florida (Boca Raton)         1-2        Captain Roger Van Dyke, PGA                19.5 Points

5th                   Illinois (Chicago)               1-2        Captain Dennis Johnsen, PGA                 11.5 Points

6th                   New Jersey                        0-3        Captain Bill Fox, PGA                              7 Points

The concept brings players together to learn the game among their peers under the direction of PGA/LPGA Professionals (team captains). Parents play an active role, making the program a family activity to create another generation of players to enjoy the game. No previous playing experience is required and players of varied skill levels filled out the teams. Matches are coed, two-person scrambles, reinforcing the team concept and limiting the pressure on any one player. Much like other league sports, participants play in team uniforms with jersey numbers. The program will be available nationally in 2013.

CALIFORNIA CAPTURES FIRST  PGA JUNIOR LEAGUE GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPCALIFORNIA CAPTURES FIRST  PGA JUNIOR LEAGUE GOLF CHAMPIONSHIP