Angela Zhang of Bellevue, Washington, leads the Ping An Bank Junior All-Star Invitational after carding a 6-under-par 66 after the first round.
Zhang made six birdies and 12 pars en route to her perfect round. She made back-to-back birdies to start her round, on the par-5 No. 10 and the par-4 No. 11. Zhang made one more birdie before making the turn on the par-3 No. 17. On the back nine, she made birdies on Nos. 2, 6 and 8.
I hit a lot of drives close and my putting was also good, so I was able to make a lot of great putts.
At No. 29 in the Rolex AJGA Rankings, Zhang is looking to finish strong after an incredible year. She has won three AJGA events this summer, with her first win at the AJGA Junior at Palouse Ridge. The class of 2027 grad earned Rolex Junior All-American honors this year as well as AJGA Junior All-Star team recognition.
Anna Huang of (Canada) Coto De Caza, California, is two-strokes behind Zhang after shooting a 4-under-par 68. Camille Thai of Los Altos, California, and Donina Zhou of Trabuco Canyon, California, are tied for third with a 2-under-par 70. Round out the top five girls is Esther Kwon of Calabasas, California, after carding a 1-under-par 71.
In the Boys Division, Zhengqian Li of (China) Melbourne, Australia, ended the first round with a 4-under-par 68. His round included an eagle on the par-5 No. 10 and three birdies.
Li is playing in his first Invitational in his first year of AJGA events. The class of 2025 grad won the 2022 AJGA Junior All-Star presented by Auburn-Opelika Tourism and has two other top-three finishes.
My irons and short game were great today and I was also able to putt well.
Finley Bartlett of Cincinnati, Ohio, is two-shots behind Li with a 2-under-par 70. Bartlett made six birdies throughout his round. Tied for third at 1-under-par 71 is Brayden Miller of Goshen, Indiana, Zach Huang of Sammamish, Washington, Nathan Miller of Dallas, Texas, Jeff Seong of Tacoma, Washington, and Talan Harrison, of Kannapolis, North Carolina.
The second round tees off at Canyon Springs Golf Club, Tuesday, November 21, at 7:30 a.m. off No. 1 and No. 10 tees.