Kovelesky, Pano and Weidenfeld to join Smith and Nip, representing South Florida
ATLANTIS, FL – South Florida PGA Junior Tour members Andi Smith and Gloria Nip will play in the 44th Girls Junior PGA Championship held July 9-12th at Keney Park Golf Course in Hartford. One of junior golf’s premier championships, Smith and Nip will represent the South Florida PGA Junior Tour after finishing first and second, respectfully at the SFPGA Junior PGA Championship in June.
Players in the field of 144 qualified based on several criteria, including the champions from each of the PGA of America’s 41 section junior championships.
Smith, of Hobe Sound, shot an even par 142 (69-73) to win the South Florida Junior PGA Championship at Boca West Country Club and Nip, of Port St. Lucie, finished at two-over 144 also advancing.
The incoming Sophomore at The Pine School, Smith has verbally committed to Duke University and is set to be part of the Blue Devils’ class of 2026.
The 13-year-old Nip is no stranger to the national stage, having qualified for the National Drive, Chip & Putt contest twice (2015, 2018) and finished runner-up at Augusta National in 2018.
Additionally, south Florida residents and SFPGA Junior Tour members, Chloe Kovelesky (Boca, Raton), Alexa Pano (Lake Worth) and Casey Weidenfeld (Pembroke Pines) will compete as a result of exemptions earned through the performance in other national junior events, national amateur/open events, diversity and inclusion events and other special considerations.
The Girls Junior PGA will be the first PGA of America national championship contested in Connecticut. Keney Park opened in 1927 with a nine-hole course designed by Devereux Emmet; the Robert “Jack” Ross-designed back nine opened four years later. In 2014, the Connecticut PGA Section signed an agreement to serve as City of Hartford consultants to help them regain operational ownership of Keney Park and oversee a course restoration to enhance the facility’s level of sustainability. Following a 30-month restoration, Keney Park reopened for play on May 1, 2016.
Over the years, many past and present LPGA Tour stars competed in this event, including major winners and two-time Girls Junior PGA champions Inbee Park (2001, ‘02), Lexi Thompson (2007, ’09) and Ariya Jutanugarn (2011, ’12).
Click here for a full lost of participants and follow the South Florida PGA Junior Tour (sfpga_juniorgolf) on Instagram as Andi Smith takes over for a look inside the tournament.
About the South Florida PGA Junior Tour
The South Florida PGA Junior Prep Tour is proudly presented by The Honda Classic and supported by Don Law Golf Academy, Palm Beach County Sports Commission, Titleist, The Oasis Championship, Precision Pro Golf, Pukka, and The Men’s Fun Group at Mirasol.
The South Florida PGA Junior Prep Tour, run under the South Florida PGA Foundation, is committed to its mission of keeping membership and tournament-related costs low while providing first-class quality golf at fourteen championship courses throughout South Florida over the course of the entire Junior Prep Tour season.
For more information on the South Florida PGA Junior Programs and, please visit the South Florida PGA Junior Tour website at www.sfpgajuniorgolf.com