News

From FJ Invitational to the PGA TOUR

fjinv-preview.jpg

By Kelsey Marini, AJGA Communications

The FJ Invitational will be returning for the seventh year to Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, North Carolina, from June 8-12. This year marks the 14th year of the tournament and the 21st year FootJoy has been a sponsor of the AJGA.

The FJ Invitational will host 84 elite boy junior golfers from around the world. Seventeen of the players are current Rolex Junior All-Americans and 45 are AJGA champions.
Last year’s FJ Invitational champion, Austin Connelly of Irving, Texas, fired a 3-under-par 67 in the final round to total 9-under-par 271 and win by six strokes.

“This win is so much better, it just feels good. The AJGA is the best junior golf organization in the world and this means so much,” Connelly said after his victory in 2014.

The FJ Invitational started in 2002 at The Cardinal Golf & Country Club in Greensboro, North Carolina. In 2004, the tournament moved to Forest Oaks Country Club in Greensboro until 2008 where it moved to its current home at Sedgefield.

AJGA alum Patrick Reed played in the FJ Invitational in 2006 and 2007. In his first year, Reed tied for 23rd and in the following year he tied for ninth. Reed returned to Greensboro in 2013 as a PGA TOUR player and would go on to win the Wyndham Championship after beating Jordan Spieth in a two-hole playoff.

The tournament has hosted several other players who have gone on to play on the PGA TOUR. The 2015 Masters Champion, Jordan Spieth, played in the FJ Invitational in 2008 and 2009, tying for sixth and finishing fourth the following year. The 2015 PLAYERS Championship winner, Rickie Fowler, played in 2006 and finished fifth. In all, 39 current PGA TOUR players played in the FJ Invitational during their AJGA careers, including Justin Thomas, Webb Simpson, Billy Horschel and Chris Kirk.