Who won the first-ever Donald Ross Memorial Invitational boys individual title?

Thursday, September 29, 2011

LPGA Tour Q-School: Howard, Yun and Tanco poised to advance

Bradenton players are right in the hunt to medal this week at the second stage of LPGA Tour Qualifying School through 36 holes at Plantation Golf & Country Club's Panther and Bobcat golf courses.

But this week isn't about winning. It's about doing enough to notch a top 70 finish in order to progress to the final stage slated to begin at the end of November.

From there, players will have a shot to earn their 2012 LPGA Tour card.

Nonetheless, Bradenton's Ginger Howard and Hannah Yun are tied for fourth after Wednesday's second round. Both players sit at 5-under par, three shots out of the lead.

Howard is home-schooled, but attends IMG Academies for the golf program. Yun is a third-year pro after a brief college career at the University of Florida.

Another IMG golfer, Victoria Tanco, carded her second consecutive 71 to notch a 2-under par total and a tie for 15th through the halfway point.

While those three locals are poised for advancement, IMG alum Seema Sadekar and University Park's Tatiana Gammicchia aren't looking too good.

Sadekar, also an alum of UNLV and the Golf Channel reality show The Big Break, is at 6-over par after her second straight 75. She's tied for 133rd.

Gammicchia failed to break 80 again, following an opening round 82 on Tuesday. Her round on Wednesday, an 83, places her in a tie for 225th among the 240-player field.

For more on Howard's story, check out Wednesday's edition of the Bradenton Herald.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

LPGA Tour Q-School: Locals on top

The second stage of LPGA Tour Qualifying School has a whopping field.

That's not an understatement with 240 players, but good thing the Plantation Golf & Country Club has two courses to hold such an enormous gathering.

Through Tuesday's action, though, it's some players with ties to Bradenton that are on top of the leaderboard.
Hannah Yun is tied for the lead following a 4-under par 68 on the Panther Course. Yun, who is listed from Bradenton after her junior career here, is a third-year pro and former Florida Gator standout.

Meanwhile, IMG Academies golfer Ginger Howard is nestled in at 3-under par. She did her damage on the Bobcat Course to take a share of third place after the first round.

Victoria Tanco, another IMG golfer, is also in the hunt following a 1-under par 71. Tanco also registered her round on the Bobcat Course. The Venice layout was playing a bit longer than normal due to some early showers making conditions a little soggy.

The top 70 players and ties advance to the final stage in Daytona Beach at LPGA International, starting at the end of November.

Currently, players at 1-over par would progress.

That means University Park's Tatiana Gammicchia (82) and UNLV and IMG alum Seema Sadekar (75) have their work cut out for them.

To read about Tanco, grab Wednesday's edition of the Bradenton Herald.

And stay tuned to this blog for the latest updates from LPGA Tour Q-School.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Jeffrey Meltzer claims FJT title

Bradenton’s Jeffrey Meltzer won this past weekend’s FSGA Florida Junior Tour 16-18 year old boys title on the strength of an opening round 67 at Ironhorse Country Club in West Palm Beach.

Meltzer’s 36-hole total was 142, and he had to birdie the first playoff hole to secure victory over Logan Lanier, of Saint Augustine.

Lakewood Ranch High’s Ramsey Touchberry placed third with a 143 total. Fellow Mustangs golfer Connor Baldwin logged a tie for ninth with a 147 total.

On the girls side, Bradenton’s Vivian Chen tied for eighth after a 157 total left her 10 shots behind winner Madison Opfer, of Plant City.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

PGA Tour Q-School: Area players in hunt to progress

Logo provided by the West Florida Golf Tour. Several players are in the hunt at PGA Tour Q-School this week.

PGA Tour Q-School
is in full swing with the pre-qualification stage at various locations around the country.

Several West Florida Golf Tour players are attempting to advance to the next stage with the hopes of earning a PGA Tour card for the 2012 season.

The lone Florida site is Lake Jovita's South Course in Dade City. The top 40 and ties progress from the 54-hole event. The final round is Friday.

Here's a look at how some of those WFGT players are faring through two rounds in Dade City:

Jacob Katz is tied for the lead, and barring a monumental collapse is assured a berth into the first stage. He's carded rounds of 66 and 69 thus far. Katz is a recent WFGT winner, claiming a title in his pro debut.

Brad Klapprott is also near the top of the leaderboard. He sits in a tie for fifth at 7-under par, two shots behind Katz.

Brian Richey and Erik Barnes are tied for 20th at 4-under par. Barnes is from nearby Englewood, while Richey is from Lakeland.

Brooksville's Fred Farmer is at 2-under par and tied for 26th.

Valrico's Matthew Galloway, who is near the top of the WFGT's all-time money list, needs a low round on Friday to advance. Currently, he's 1-over par and in 42nd place - just one shot out of the final berth.

Osprey's Devin Spies and Pennsylvania native Steve Arnold, who lives in Bradenton, are tied for 61st at 4-over par.

And Longboat Key's Jared Kobren fired a 77 on Thursday to post a 7-over total.

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Monday Recap: Area player notes

Several players with local ties were in action this past weekend on both the national amateur and pro scenes.

Here's a quick snippet on how they fared:

  • Former IMG Academies alum Peter Uihlein participated on the United States Walker Cup team, a biennial Ryder Cup-styled event for amateurs. Uihlein and Team USA were looking to four-peat over Great Britain & Ireland, but were unsuccessful. GB&I edged their opponents from across the pond 14-12 at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club in Scotland. Uihlein, who is a senior at Oklahoma State University, went 2-2 in four matches over the weekend. He won two singles matches, while dropping both foursomes (alternate shot) matches. Uihlein wasn't the only American player to struggle in the foursomes format. In fact, GB&I went 6-1-1 in those matches, which went a long way in clinching this year's Walker Cup.
  • Bradenton's Jessica Korda has struggled this year as a rookie on the LPGA Tour. However, Korda fired an impressive final round 68 to collect nearly $10,000 for a top-40 finish at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship. Yani Tseng won the event for her fifth title this season. Other notables from the area that competed were Paula Creamer, Jaclyn Sweeney and Taylor Leon. All three IMG alums had a mixed showing. Sweeney missed the cut, while Creamer snagged a tie for eighth following rounds of 68, 68 and 69. Leon, though, faltered on Sunday. Entering the day, she was one shot out of the lead, but ballooned to a 75 that left her tied for 22nd.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

College notebook: Peter Uihlein joining Team USA for four-peat Walker Cup bid

Peter Uihlein earlier this year at the Masters. Photo courtesy of McClatchy-Tribune News Services.

Former IMG star and current Oklahoma State University senior Peter Uihlein's summer season is extending into early fall.

Uihlein failed in his bid to defend the U.S. Amateur title that he captured in 2010, but the Orlando resident, who is a student under IMG Leadbetter Golf Academy director David Whelan, is on the 2011 Walker Cup team.

The biennial match-play event pits the United States against Great Britain & Ireland.
Uihlein was named to the team in early August. The full squad, though, wasn't named until recently - after this year's U.S. Amateur wrapped up.

The tournament is scheduled for this weekend at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club in Scotland.

Team USA has claimed the last three Walker Cups.