Ariya Jutanugarn of Bangkok, Thailand, was named the
girls’ Rolex Junior Player of the Year for the second year in a row, the
American Junior Golf Association announced Wednesday, Oct. 17.
Introduced by the AJGA in 1978, the Rolex Junior
Player of the Year award recognizes one boy and one girl who had the most
outstanding year in junior golf events at the national level. Past recipients
have gone on to become some of the most esteemed players on the PGA and LPGA Tours,
including Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Charles Howell III, Hunter Mahan, Scott
Verplank, Cristie Kerr, Inbee Park, Paula Creamer and Morgan Pressel.
16, is the fifth girl to earn Rolex Junior Player of the Year honors in
back-to-back seasons. She has been No. 1 in the Polo Golf Rankings since July
2, 2011, and won three junior tournaments in 2012. In all, Jutanugarn has seven
national junior golf victories since she began competing in the United States
during the past season will be heralded Nov. 18 during the Rolex Junior
All-America Awards Banquet at PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach
Gardens, Fla. The awards ceremony, dubbed “The Greatest Night in Junior Golf,”
will also trumpet the achievements of the rest of golf’s next generation by
means of the Rolex Junior All-America Teams, HP Scholastic Junior All-America
Teams and Jerry Cole Sportsmanship Award.
About Ariya Jutanugarn’s 2012 Season
Jutanugarn, 16, has once again set herself on the
junior golf pedestal in 2012. Since her debut on the American junior golf
circuit in 2009, she has seven victories, five runner-up finishes and has
finished outside the top 10 just three times. After being named Rolex Junior
Player of the Year in 2011, she successfully defended two major junior titles in 2012
and earned junior golf’s highest honor for the second consecutive year.
Jutanugarn opened the season with a third-place
showing at the Scott Robertson Memorial. She then notched her first win of the
season at the Thunderbird International Junior, where she prevailed in a
sudden-death playoff against Laura Sojo after the duo finished at 5-under-par.
followed the win with a defense of her title at the Rolex
Girls Junior Championship, where she set the AJGA girls’ 72-hole scoring record
at 18-under-par 270, breaking the record she established in 2011.
A month later, she posted a T3 showing at the U.S.
Girls’ Junior Championship, where she fell short in the semifinals against
Minjee Lee, who went on to win the event. To close the season, she embodied her
consistent performance at the Junior PGA Championship, becoming the first
girls’ champion to notch back-to-back titles since AJGA alumna Inbee Park.
Ariya Jutanugarn – 2012 season results
Junior tournaments (ranked in Polo Golf
|T34||*Polo Golf Junior Classic||78-75–153|
|3rd||Scott Robertson Memorial||72-72-69–213|
|1st||*Thunderbird International Junior||72-72-67–211|
|1st||*Rolex Girls Junior Championship||70-65-68-67–270|
|12th||*Rolex Tournament of Champions||72-68-72-76–288|
|T3||U.S. Girls' Junior Championship||71-71–142|
|1st||Junior PGA Championship||66-70-71-67–27|