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June 14, 2012

Women's Open qualifiers tested at Rolex Girls

Eleven AJGA juniors qualified to compete among the top female golfers in the world at the 2012 U.S. Women’s Open. Since 2006, AJGA juniors have qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open a total of 76 times. The U.S. Women’s Open will take place July 5-8 at Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wis.

Shannon Aubert (3rd from right) of Reunion, Fla., currently No. 2 in the Polo Golf Rankings, will make her U.S. Women’s Open debut this year. Aubert has finished top-five in all three of her appearances this season, finishing first at the Kathy Whitworth Invitational in March. The two-time first-team Rolex Junior All-American boasts a record that includes 20 top-10 AJGA finishes, most notably a second-place finish at the 2012 ANNIKA Invitational and third place at the 2011 PING Invitational. 

Elisabeth Bernabe (2nd from left) of Anaheim Hills, Calif., will see how she stacks up at Blackwolf Run as well. The rising senior, ranked No. 95 in the Polo Golf Rankings, has recorded six top-10 finishes in AJGA tournaments, with her best being second place at the 2011 Randy Wise Junior Open.

This year marks the return of Jaye Marie Green (far left) of Boca Raton, Fla., who made her U.S. Women’s Open debut in 2010. Currently No. 3 in the Polo Golf Rankings, Green has compiled three wins, including the 2011 PING Invitational and the 2010 Polo Golf Junior Classic. She led the United States to a victory at the 2011 PING Junior Solheim Cup with a 2-0-1 record.

Moriya Jutanugarn (3rd from left) of Bangkok, Thailand, earned her place in the field by finishing runner-up at the 2011 U.S. Women's Amateur. It is her second year at the Open after claiming low-amateur honors at the 2011 Women's Open. 

Megan Khang (not pictured) of Rockland, Mass., will appear in her first U.S. Women’s Open.  She has played in the last three U.S. Girls Junior Championships and finished in the top-15 at the 2011 Junior PGA Championship.  Khang comes off a win at the Connecticut Women’s Open in May. 

A 2011 Rolex Junior All-American, Samantha Marks (far right) of Maitland, Fla., has compiled eight top-10 finishes in her AJGA career. In 2011, she won the Deutsche Bank Partners for Charity Junior Shoot Out, finished in third at the AJGA Woodward Video Junior at The Greenbrier, and tied for fourth at the Under Armour® / Vicky Hurst Championship.  The recent high school graduate will head to UNC – Chapel Hill this fall to continue her golf career.

Two-time AJGA victor and 2011 Rolex Junior All-American Rinko Mitsunaga (not pictured) of Roswell, Ga., also played her way into the Open. Ranked No. 62 in the Polo Golf Rankings, the 15-year-old has already compiled nine top-10 junior golf finishes.

Hannah O’Sullivan (not pictured) of Cupertino, Calif., is just 14 years old but has already broke the top-100 in the Polo Golf Rankings. O’Sullivan won her very first AJGA event, the 2010 Stockton Sports Commission Junior Open. Since then, she has compiled seven top-15 finishes, including a recent tie for fourth at the PING Phoenix Junior at ASU Karsten. This will be her first appearance at the Women's Open.

Annie Park (2nd from right) of Levittown, N.Y., will also play in her first U.S. Women’s Open. The Southern California verbal commit has secured three AJGA titles and most recently finished in a tied for third at the Exide Technologies Junior Open presented by Mizuno. She is a three-time Rolex Junior All-American and is currently ranked No. 15 in the Polo Golf Rankings.

Emma Talley (not pictured) of Princeton, Ky., will make her second straight appearance at the U.S. Women’s Open. The four-time Rolex Junior All-American boasts a record that includes 10 wins, which is tied for the eighth-most in AJGA history.  Her victory at the 2011 AJGA Girls Championship set the AJGA girls’ record for most consecutive wins at four. Talley recently graduated high school and will attend the University of Alabama to continue her golf career at the collegiate level.

Also making the trip to Wisconsin is Lindsey Weaver (not pictured) of Scottsdale, Ariz., who recently picked up her eighth career AJGA win at the PING Phoenix Junior at ASU Karsten, her second victory of 2012 (she also won the Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club). In addition, Weaver has compiled 12 top-five junior golf finishes in her career. She will begin college at Notre Dame this fall.

Many of these juniors competed in this week's Rolex Girls Junior Championship. To see the latest results, visit the tournament webpage.


Updated Thursday, June 14.