Brynn Walker, Radnor’s two-time PIAA Class AAA champion, wanted to make a couple of forays to warmer climes to get some top-notch competition to keep her game sharp as she and pal Madelein Herr, the District One champion from Council Rock North, prepare for another run at the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship in May.
Walker, a senior who is headed for North Carolina in the fall, was part of a contingent of Main Line junior golfers who teed it up in American Junior Golf Association events in Florida over the Easter weekend.
Walker added a final-round 80 Sunday to rounds of 77 and 73 to finish tied for 15th at 230 in the TaylorMade-adidas Golf Junior at Innisbrook hosted by Justin Rose in Palm Harbor, Fla. The 1-over middle round over the 6,079-yard, par-71 Copperhead Course was clutch because it got Walker safely inside the cut and assured her a tee time for the Easter Sunday windup.
The run by Walker and Herr to the semifinals of the inaugural U.S. Women’s Four-Ball last spring at the Bandon Dunes Resort in Oregon automatically qualified them for this year’s event, which will be played May 21 to 25 at the Tom Doak-designed Blue Course at the Streamsong Resort in Florida. Walker, who plays out of St. Davids Golf Club, and Herr, a Penn State recruit, will be likely be busy with college golf when the 2017 U.S. Women’s Four-Ball comes around.
The winner of the girls division at Innisbrook was Grace Ni of Cypress, Texas who had rounds of 73, 67 and 77 for a 4-over 217 total that cleared the field by two shots.
Also making the trip to Florida’s West Coast was Agnes Irwin sophomore Kaitlyn Lees, who plays out of Philadelphia Country Club. Lees is gearing up for the spring Inter-Ac League girls season. She has been a top-three finisher at the Inter-Ac Tournament in each of the last three springs.
Lees had rounds of 76 and 82 for a 158 total that missed the cut by six shots.
Peter Bradbeer, a senior at Friends’ Central and a Bucknell recruit, had rounds of 75 and 81 for a 156 total that missed the cut by two shots. Bradbeer plays out of Merion Golf Club.
The winner of the boys division was Brandon Mancheno of Jacksonville, Fla., who had rounds of 74, 67 and 75 for a 3-over 216 total over the same Copperhead Course that challenged the PGA Tour pros in the Valspar Championship two weeks ago. Mancheno finished two shots ahead of the pack.
Over on Florida’s East Coast, the AJGA staged the Core Golf Academy Junior All-Star contested at the PGA National Resorts Spa’s Fazio Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
John Updike, who had a spectacular freshman season in leading Malvern Prep to the Inter-Ac title last fall, had rounds of 80 and 77 over the 6,765-yard, par-72 Fazio course for a 157 total that missed the cut by five shots. Updike plays out of Aronimink Golf Club.
The boys winner at PGA National was Bryan Teoh Wiyang of Jupiter, Fla. via Malaysia. Wiyang had rounds of 71, 68 and 72 for a 5-under 211 total that gave him a five-shot margin of victory.
The girls winner at PGA National was 12-year-old Yin (Cindy) Kou of Windermere, Fla. via China. Kou had steady rounds of 74, 72 and 72 for a 2-over 218 total that gave her a three-shot margin of victory.