Jackson Koivun of San Jose, California, fired an opening round of 5-under-par 67 on the PGA National Resort & Spa – Fazio Course to take a one-stroke lead over the Boys Division at the Rolex Tournament of Champions. In the Girls Division, Meja Ortengren of Stockholm, Sweden, leads the field by one stroke after recording a 4-under-par 68 on the Champion Course.
The 44th edition of the Rolex Tournament of Champions features 144 of the best junior golfers in the world from 14 different countries. The tournament combines the 2021 Rolex Junior All-Americans and Rolex Scholastic Honorees with many of this year's AJGA champions to create The Greatest Week in Junior Golf. There are 69 current or former Rolex Junior All-Americans in the field, with a total of 93 AJGA champions competing.
Past winners of the Rolex Tournament of Champions include Phil Mickelson, David Duval, Charles Howell, David Gossett, Webb Simpson, Sam Burns, Heather Farr, Kellee Booth, Inbee Park, Morgan Pressel and Alison Lee.
Koivun, an Auburn University verbal commit, started his round with a birdie on the par-5 No. 1 and birdies on Nos. 4 and 6 to continue his steady front nine. His back nine included birdies on Nos. 12, 16, and 17. The 2021 Jack Burke Jr. Invitational champion is looking for his second AJGA Invitational title of the year. Koivun also has 4 top-10 finishes to go with his Invitational win.
Four juniors sit one stroke back at 4-under-par 68.
- Luke Haskew of Baton Rouge, Louisiana
- Bryan Lee of Fairfax, Virginia
- Jean-Philippe Parr of St-Célestin, Quebec, Canada
- Michael La Sasso of Raleigh, North Carolina
Ortengren is competing in her second-career AJGA event. Her lone event came at the 2021 PING Junior Solheim Cup. Ortengren started her round with a birdie and had a smooth front nine. She started her back nine with three consecutive birdies and kept the steady pace to the end to come out on top after round one.
Yurang Li of Fullerton, California, and Alexa Pano of Lake Worth, Florida, sit in second at 3-under-par 69. Both juniors finished the round with four birdies. Angela Zhang of Bellevue, Washington, ends in fourth place at 2-under-par 70.
Three girls share fifth on the leaderboard at 1-under-par 71:
- Bridget Ma of Orlando, Florida
- Kaitlyn Schroeder of Jacksonville, Florida
- Yunxuan (Michelle) Zhang of (China) Plano, Texas
Second-round tee times run from 7:30 - 9:20 a.m. on Tuesday, November 23. The Girls Division will be competing on the Fazio Course, while the Boys Division will play the Champion.
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Rolex, a Swiss watch manufacture headquartered in Geneva, is recognized the world over for its expertise and the quality of its products. It's Oyster Perpetual and Cellini watches, all certified as Superlative Chronometers for their precision, performance and reliability, are symbols of excellence, elegance and prestige. The word “Perpetual” is inscribed on every Rolex Oyster. But more than just a word on a dial, it is a philosophy that embodies the company’s vision and values. Hans Wilsdorf, the founder of the company, instilled a notion of perpetual excellence that would drive the company forward. This led Rolex to pioneer the development of the wristwatch and numerous major watchmaking innovations, such as the Oyster, the first waterproof wristwatch, launched in 1926, and the Perpetual rotor self-winding mechanism, invented in 1931. Rolex has registered over 500 patents in the course of its history. A truly integrated and independent manufacturing company, Rolex designs, develops and produces in-house the essential components of its watches, from the casting of the gold alloys to the machining, crafting, assembly and finishing of the movement, case, dial and bracelet. Furthermore, Rolex is actively involved in supporting the arts and culture, sport and exploration, as well as those who are devising solutions to preserve the planet.