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K12 Qualifier Series
Mission Hills Country Club
Rancho Mirage, Calif. • June 21, 2009

Thammaraks earns Girls Division medalist honors at Mission Hills Country Club

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. — Mark Jensma of Aliso Viejo, Calif., earned medalist honors for the Boys Division at the K12 Qualifier for the ClubCorp Mission Hills Desert Junior after shooting a 4-under-par 68. In the Girls Division Prima Thammaraks of Jatujak, Thailand was awarded medalist honors after shooting a 2-under-par 70.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the K12 Qualifier for the ClubCorp Mission Hills Desert Junior was an 18-hole stroke play event held on the Arnold Palmer Course at Mission Hills Country Club. The tournament field featured 80 boys and 20 girls, ages 12-18, from three states. The Boys Division played the par-72 course at 6,741 yards, while the Girls Division played at 5,941 yards.

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, 12 boys and three girls advanced from the K12 Qualifier and have the opportunity to play in the 28th annual ClubCorp Mission Hills Desert Junior, which begins Tuesday, June 23. The K12 Qualifier Series offers opportunities for AJGA juniors at approximately 50 AJGA Open events.

Jensma played an impressive round finishing with only one bogey. He attributes his five birdies to his strong iron play which he believes was the key to his game.

“My irons were really straight,” Jensma said. “I was always hitting the right distance and in the right places.”

Joining Jensma in at the ClubCorp Mission Hills Desert Junior are Brian Alle of Pacific Palisades, Calif., Mark Wyllie of San Jose, Calif., Joseph Choi of Bakersfield, Calif., Ryan Knapp of Costa Mesa, Calif., Jonathan Rego of San Dimas, Calif., Brandon Molnar of Calabasas, Calif., Corey Gard of Villa Park, Calif., Matt McAustin of Arroyo Grande, Calif., Andrew Cho of La Crescenta, Calif., Samuel Buchman of Los Angeles, and Robin Jang of Los Angeles.

Opting to take a tournament exemption in lieu of playing in the tournament are Ryann Ree of Redondo Beach, Calif., Kevin Allen of San Clemente, Calif., Robert Palacios of Chino Hills, Calif., Michael Haeri of Huntington Beach, Calif., and Won Je Choi of San Diego.

In the Girls Division, Thammaraks carded three birdies and only bogeyed one hole, leaving her the only girl to shoot under par. Despite the fact that she believes her putting to be the weakest part of her game, she only had 13 putts on the back nine. The most exciting part for the rising senior is getting to play the course where the Kraft Nabisco Championship has been held for the past 38 years.

“I came to see the tournament at Mission Hills when I was 13 years old,” Thammaraks said. “I am really glad that I get to play that same course.”

Joining Jensma in at the ClubCorp Mission Hills Desert Junior are Rochelle Chan of Carson, Calif., and Sarah Baek of Encinitas, Calif.

Opting to take a tournament exemption in lieu of playing in the tournament are Tina Soyon Kwon of Tustin, Calif., and Rachel Kim of Diamond Bar, Calif.

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 AJGA, the largest Association of its kind, has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 30 foreign countries.

AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 200 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 350 wins. AJGA alumni include Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink, Davis Love III, Cristie Kerr, Pat Hurst, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel and Julieta Granada.

K¹² Inc., a technology-based education company, is the nation's leading provider of proprietary curriculum and online education programs to students in grades K-12. K¹² provides its curriculum and academic services to online schools, traditional classrooms, blended school programs, and directly to families. Over 55,000 students in 23 states and the District of Columbia are enrolled in online public schools that use the K¹² program. K¹² Inc. also operates the K¹² International Academy, an accredited, diploma-granting online private school serving students worldwide. The K¹² academic program is used by many young people pursuing careers in athletics, music, art, acting, and other professions that require a high degree of scheduling flexibility. More information can be found at www.k12.com

First-round tee times for the ClubCorp Mission Hills Desert Junior will run from 6:30 — 8:18 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees Tuesday at the Mission Hills Country Club on the Dinah Shore Tournament Course. For more information, please contact the Tournament Director Tommy Tangtiphaiboontana at (760) 324-9400.