WEST TEAM TAKES HOME CANON CUP FOR THIRD CONSECUTIVE YEAR
East Team fights back on Day Three to finish four points back
OOLTEWAH, Tenn. – Emerging from Day Two with an eight-point lead, the West Team maintained its foothold over the East throughout Day Three to finish with a four-point lead and take home the Canon Cup for the third time in as many years. The West squad won seven singles matches on the final day, putting the total at 27-23.
The American Junior Golf Association’s Canon Cup, now in its 18 th year, brought together the nation’s top 40 juniors in an East versus West (divided by the Mississippi River) team match play tournament. Each squad consisted of 20 players – 10 boys and 10 girls – who were selected based on an AJGA points system that rewarded them for top finishes in national junior golf events. The event was held at The Honors Course. In all-time competition, the West Team now leads 9-8-1.
At the beginning of the day, the West needed just 6-1/2 points to claim a victory. West Team member Sam Chien of San Diego, Calif., set the tone for his team, defeating Spencer Cole of Greer, S.C., 5 and 4 to claim the first point of the day. The West then won the next two points, starting the day by claiming the first three matches.
Meanwhile, the East Team did not go home without putting up a fight. Despite the West’s eight-point lead at the beginning of Day Three, the East was relentless, winning or halving nine out of the next 10 matches and ultimately gaining 12 of 20 points. Marika Lendl of Bradenton, Fla., showed the East Team’s fighting spirit by halving her match against Mina Harigae of Monterey, Calif., the reigning U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Champion.
Despite the East Team’s notable effort to regain the lead, the West Team’s Day Two lead proved to be insurmountable. The final point came down to West Team member and Canon Cup veteran Stephanie Kono of Honolulu. Six-up through No. 12, she only needed to win No. 13 to gain the crucial point and ensure a victory for her team. She hit her approach shot 30 feet from the hole on a downhill slope. On the green, Kono’s competitor Isabelle Lendl of Brandenton, Fla., missed a 10-footer for par and conceded the hole to Kono, whose birdie putt stopped one foot from the hole. Kono’s teammates flooded the green to congratulate her for earning the deciding point of the day and tournament.
“We (the West Team) played so much as a team,” Kono said. “On every shot we’d work together and figure out our plan. We played solid this week. Not only is our team better on paper now, but we’ve proved that we can beat the East.”
East Team member Vicky Hurst of Melbourne, Fla., who lost both her Day Two morning and afternoon matches, returned the final day intent on collecting a victory. She defeated Taylore Karle of Scottsdale, Ariz., and gained a point after finishing 4 and 3.
“Last night we all talked about what the Canon Cup means to us and what a win would be like,” Hurst said. “We all went out today and just tried to win it for our Team Captain Walker (Hill). We were so pumped today, and we proved that we could make a huge comeback. I’m just so glad that we did.”
Four members of the West Team went undefeated: Will Kropp of Edmond, Okla. (4-0-0); Harigae (2-0-2); Ayaka Kaneko of Honolulu (4-0-0); and Kimberly Kim of Pahoa, Hawaii (3-0-1).
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 49 states and more than 25 foreign countries.
Titleist, the AJGA's National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association's success since 1989. Rolex Watch USA, which is in its third decade of AJGA support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. In 2007, after 12 years of support, Polo Ralph Lauren became the AJGA's second Premier Partner.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 160 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 300 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.
In 1990 the inaugural Canon Cup featured then rising stars Tiger Woods and Emilee Klein representing the West team, squaring off against Stewart Cink and Vicki Goetze defending the East. Since then notable juniors to represent the East include Charles Howell III, David Gossett and Casey Wittenberg. Alumni of the West team include Ryan Moore, Grace Park and Paula Creamer.
For more information about Canon Cup, please contact AJGA national headquarters at (877) 373-2542.
OOLTEWAH, Tenn. – Day three results from the Canon Cup conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at The Honors Course. Par: Boys: 36-36--72; Girls: 36-36--72. Yardage: Boys: 7,200; Girls: 6,402. Rating/Slope: Boys: 76.1/151; Girls: 78.4/148.
DAY ONE TOTAL: East 8, West 7
DAY TWO TOTAL: West 12, East 3
DAY THREE TOTAL: East 12, West 8
OVERALL TOTAL: West 27, East 23
DAY THREE SINGLES MATCHES: East 12, West 8
Sam Chien, San Diego, Calif. (2008) WEST def. Spencer Cole, Greer, S.C. (2007) EAST, 5 and 4
Ayaka Kaneko, Honolulu, Hawaii (2008) WEST def. Courtney Ellenbogen, Blacksburg, Va. (2009) EAST, 4 and 3
Alex Shi Yup Kim, Fullerton, Calif. (2008) WEST def. Morgan Hoffmann, Saddlebrook, N.J. (2008) EAST, 2 and 1
Mina Harigae, Monterey, Calif. (2008) WEST vs. Marika Lendl, Bradenton, Fla. (2008) EAST, Halved
Lion Kim, Lake Mary, Fla. (2007) EAST def. Andrew Yun, Tacoma, Wash. (2009) WEST, 3 and 2
Michelle Shin, Cape Coral, Fla. (2009) EAST def. Joanne Lee, San Carlos, Calif. (2007) WEST, 1-up
John Hahn, Kent, Ohio (2007) EAST def. Andrew Putnam, University Place, Wash. (2007) WEST, 3 and 2
Vicky Hurst, Melbourne, Fla. (2008) EAST def. Taylore Karle, Scottsdale, Ariz. (2007) WEST, 4 and 3
Bud Cauley, Jacksonville, Fla. (2008) EAST def. Cory Whitsett, Houston, Texas (2010) WEST, 2 and 1
Cydney Clanton, Concord, N.C. (2007) EAST def. Lisa McCloskey, Montgomery, Texas (2009) WEST, 2 and 1
William Kropp, Edmond, Okla. (2008) WEST def. Arnond Vongvanij, Bradenton, Fla. (2007) EAST, 4 and 3
Allie White, Lancaster, Ohio (2008) EAST def. Jane Rah, Torrance, Calif. (2009) WEST, 1-up
Peter Uihlein, Bradenton, Fla. (2008) EAST def. Josh Jones, The Colony, Texas (2008) WEST, 1-up
Kimberly Kim, Pahoa, Hawaii (2009) WEST def. Lindy Duncan, Daytona Beach, Fla. (2009) EAST, 2 and 1
Sang Yi, Carrollton, Texas (2008) WEST def. Luke Guthrie, Quincy, Ill. (2008) EAST, 4 and 3
Alexis Thompson, Coral Springs, Fla. (2013) EAST def. Jenny Shin, Torrance, Calif. (2010) WEST, 5 and 4
Wesley Graham, Port Orange, Fla. (2008) EAST def. Cody Gribble, Dallas, Texas (2009) WEST, 2 and 1
Stephanie Kono, Honolulu, Hawaii (2008) WEST def. Isabelle Lendl, Bradenton, Fla. (2008) EAST, 7 and 5
Connor Driscoll, Encinitas, Calif. (2007) WEST vs. David Sanders, Mt. Laurel, N.J. (2008) EAST, Halved
Kristina Wong, Bradenton, Fla. (2009) EAST def. Kristen Park, Buena Park, Calif. (2012) WEST, 1-up