K12 Qualifier Series
Rockaway Hunting Club
Lawrence, N.Y. • July 5, 2009

Chen runs away with top honors in Girls Division

EAST MEADOW, N.Y. — Hyung Mo Kim of Norwood, N.J., and Davis Schaller of Egg Harbor Township, N.J., both shot 1-under-par 71 to medal Sunday in the Boys Division. Alice Chen of Princeton, N.J., took home Medalist Honors in the Girls Division after firing a 3-over-par 75.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Lessing's AJGA Classic K12 Qualifier was an 18-hole stroke play event being held at Eisenhower Park — White Course. The tournament field consisted of 87 Boys and 12 Girls, ages 12-18, from 10 states and Colombia. The par-72 course was played at 6,813 yards for the Boys Division and 6,085 yards for the Girls Division. Typically held the day prior to AJGA Open tournaments, 18-hole K12 Qualifiers give juniors an opportunity to "play their way in" to each coinciding AJGA tournament or build their AJGA Performance Based Entry status. In all, 9 boys and 4 girls advanced from the K12 Qualifier and have the opportunity to play in the Lessing's AJGA Classic, which begins Monday, July 6. The K12 Qualifier Series offers opportunities for AJGA juniors at approximately 50 AJGA Open events.

Kim drove the ball exceptionally well today, hitting 16 of 18 fairways. Kim was able to birdie two of the par-5 holes, Nos. 3 and 12 and added a birdie on Nos. 6 and 14.

“On the par-5 No. 3 I drove the ball 350 yards off the tee,” Kim said. “It was pretty easy to make a birdie on the hole from there.”

Schaller was able to kick start his game after holing out from 40 feet on the 424 yard par-4 No. 9. Schaller, who started on the third hole, was able to end his round making back-to-back birdies on Nos. 18 and 1.

“My wedges were dialed in today,” Schaller said. “On No.1 I hit my wedge from 70 yards out, I thought it was going in but it rolled to about 1 inch.”

Joining Kim in the Lessing's AJGA Classic will be Andrew DeForest of Cottekill, N.Y., Brian Thoir of New Canaan, Conn., Stephen Pastore and Jason Morilla of Greenwich, Conn., Mark Reilly of Babylon, N.Y., Samuel Buchman of Los Angeles, Michael Lee of Howey in the hills, Fla., and Joseph D'Amato of Weston, Conn.

Those choosing to an AJGA tournament exemption were Schaller, Alex DiCilemente of Burlington, Conn., Steven Burak of North Easton, Mass., and Ben Cooley of Rydal, Pa.

Chen was able to make a miraculous shot to birdie the par-3 No. 5 from 11 yards off the green that hit the flag stick and dropped into the hole. Chen chose to take an exemption in lieu of playing in this week's tournament.

“My short game was really working for me today,” Chen said. “I only had 10 putts on the front nine and 16 on the back nine”

Girls qualifying to play in the Lessing's AJGA Classic will be Michelle Rosenhouse of Dix Hills, N.Y., Hannah Kim of River Edge, N.J., Anna Bohmer of Cali, Colombia, and Alison Eleey of Quincy, Mass.

The American Junior Golf Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the overall growth and development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf. The largest Association of its kind, the AJGA has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of more than 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and more than 30 foreign countries.

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First round tee times for the Lessing's AJGA Classic will run from 7a.m.-12:20 p.m. off the No. 1 tee Tuesday, July 7 at Rockaway Hunting Club. For more information about the Lessing's AJGA Classic, please contact Tournament Director Greg Sanfilippo at (678) 936-0163.

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