REUNION, Fla. —Pontus Widegren of Danderyd, Sweden, received a distinct honor Sunday night when he was awarded the AJGA Jerry Cole Sportsmanship Award. Widegren was presented the honor by the American Junior Golf Association at the 31st annual Rolex Junior All-America Awards Banquet.
Widegren, 18, received the award as recognition for his respect for fellow players, as well as tournament staff and volunteers.
“We have come to know and admire Pontus through his last two years of competition in The Junior PLAYERS Championship and have witnessed his integrity, respect and positive attitude both on and off the golf course,” said Billy Dettlaff, National Director of Golf for the TPC Network and TPC Sawgrass.
Dettlaff recounts the hours Widegren and his coach spent on the driving range with his 12-year-old standard bearer, providing advice and working with him on his swing.
Widegren is among the world’s top junior golfers and will attend college at UCLA in the fall of 2009.
The AJGA strives to impress upon young golfers the importance of respecting fellow competitors and the game of golf. One way to achieve this is the Sportsmanship Award. Each year, the AJGA selects one member who has displayed exemplary sportsmanship both on and off the golf course and honors this person at the annual Rolex Junior All-America Awards Banquet.
For the 31st consecutive year, the finest junior golfers in the world were recognized by the AJGA Sunday evening for their outstanding accomplishments at the Rolex Junior All-America Awards Banquet held at the Ginn Reunion Resort’s Grande Ballroom.
The AJGA is dedicated to the overall growth and development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf. However, this overall growth and development includes more than just improving or mastering one’s golf skills; it is to produce well-rounded, successful, honest and humble young adults.
Since its founding in 1978, the AJGA recognizes and rewards juniors for their impressive feats on the course, in the classroom, as well as for exhibiting sportsmanlike behavior. The Jerry Cole Sportsmanship Award honors an individual who possesses qualities such as integrity and true-heartedness and signifies the importance of living true to these virtues.
Others honored at the Rolex Junior All-American Awards Banquet include the Rolex Junior Players of the Year - Cameron Peck of Olympia, Wash., and Victoria Tanco of Buenos Aires, Argentina - the Rolex Junior All-America Teams and the HP Scholastic Junior All-America Team.
Rolex Watch USA, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, became an AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. The distinguished timepiece maker is the proprietor of the Rolex Junior Players of the Year, Rolex Junior All-America Teams and the Rolex Junior All-America Awards Banquet. Rolex also sponsors the Rolex Tournament of Champions and Rolex Girls Junior Championship, two of the AJGA’s most competitive major championships. As a Premier Partner, Rolex is the Founding Partner to the Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant program and an Official Partner to the biennial PING Junior Solheim Cup.
For more information, please contact Chris Richards (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the AJGA Communications Department at (678) 644-4258 or visit the AJGA Web site at ajga.org.