The American Junior Golf Association announced the 2006 Canon Cup Teams Tuesday. The first eight players for each team were named as of the Rolex AJGA Rankings June 30, 2006. The remaining two spots on each team were then filled in with the two highest players not yet named after the conclusion of the Rolex Tournament of Champions Sunday.
The 17th annual Canon Cup pits the top-10 boys and the top-10 girls east of the Mississippi against their counterparts from west of the Mississippi. In 2006, the Canon Cup Teams were named strictly off of the Rolex AJGA Rankings, eliminating the need for Captain’s Picks. Canon Cup will return to Conway Farms Golf Club in Lake Forest, Ill., after being hosted there in 2002.
This year, the teams are evenly matched and the competition will be fierce. The No. 1 player on the Canon Cup West Boys Squad is Rickie Fowler of Murrieta, Calif. The 2007 graduate’s stellar year helped him earn this honor. He won the 2005 Western Junior Amateur and had five additional top-five finishes. This will be Fowler’s first Canon Cup. Joining Fowler on the West Boys Team will be Kyle Stanley of Gig Harbor, Wash., Tadd Fujikawa of Honolulu, Josh Jones of The Colony, Texas, Andrew Yun of Tacoma, Wash., Richard Lee of Chandler, Ariz., Kevin Tway of Edmond, Okla., Gregor Main of Danville, Calif., Drew Kittleson also of Scottsdale., and Cody Gribble of Dallas. Stanley and Kittleson are the only veteran members of the team, both having been members in 2005.
An experienced West Girls Team looks to continue their dominance shown at last year’s tournament. Esther Choe of Scottsdale, will headline the team. After her victory at the 2006 Rolex Girls Junior Championship and some near misses during the 2006 season, Choe hopes to help her team defend their title. Choe will be joined by fellow 2005 Canon Cup West Team members Taylore Karle of Scottsdale, Mina Harigae of Monterey, Calif., Sydney Burlison of Salinas, Calif., and Jane Rah of Torrance, Calif. New to the team in 2006 are Stephanie Kono of Honolulu, Kimberly Kim of Pahoa, Hawaii, Mindy Kim of Diamond Bar, Calif., Sydnee Michaels of Temecula, Calif., and Tiffany Lua of Rowland Heights, Calif.
Countering the West Boys Team is the East Boys Squad led by Peter Uihlein of Bradenton, Fla. Uihlein was named the 2005 Rolex Junior Player of the Year after his performance last year. He finished the year with two wins (Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail Junior and the Bobby Chapman). He continued his momentum into the 2006 season winning the season-opening AJGA Craig Ranch Junior. In the past year, Uihlein has had four second-place finishes and eight additional top-10 finishes. Uihlein, also a member of the 2005 Canon Cup East Team, will be joined by Arnond Vongvanij of Bradenton, Bud Cauley of Jacksonville, Fla., David Yujin Chung of Fayetteville, N.C., Mu Hu of Celebration, Fla., Spencer Cole of Greer, S.C., Lion Kim and Ji Moonof Lake Mary, Fla., Tommy Chung Hao Mou also of Bradenton, and Patrick Reed of Baton Rouge, La. Vongvanij, Chung, Hu and Kim were all members of the 2005 team.
The East Girls Team will have their work cut out for them as only two members of last year’s team will be returning. Although she didn’t participate last year, Isabelle Lendl of Bradenton, is no stranger to match-play competition. In 2005 Lendl made it to the semifinals of the Polo Golf Junior Classic before losing to Harigae 2 and 1. She also earned a victory at the AJGA’s first Invitational of the year at the Thunderbird International Junior. The experience of two additional victories and eight more top-10 finishes will prove useful during the event. Joining her will be In-Kyung Kim of Marriotsville, Md., Megan Grehan of Mamaroneck, N.Y., Vicky Hurst of Melbourne, Fla., So-Hyun Park of Bradenton, Michelle Grilli of Luthersville, Md., Natalie Sheary of West Hartford, Conn., Joy Kim of Duluth, Ga., Kristina Wong of Vestal, N.Y., and Marika Lendl of Bradenton. Grehan and Marika Lendl are the lone returning players from 2005.