USVI posts best finish ever at Caribbean Junior Golf Championships
Published: July 17, 2012
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ST. THOMAS - Eight junior golfers from the U.S. Virgin Islands took to the links at Guavaberry Golf & Country Club in Juan Dolio, Dominican Republic, last week and competed in the Caribbean Amateur Junior Golf Championships.
The USVI contingent finished sixth out of eight teams, which was the best finish for the USVI in its last six tournament appearances.
"In the past, we've always been at the bottom so we're making progress," said Veronica Rollins, one of the Mahogany Run Golf Course assistant club professionals who also helped organize the junior golf program at the course.
Eight USVI junior golfers competed in four different age divisions during the three-day event.
Jennifer Prendergast was the team's top performer. She took fourth in the girls 14-15 age division when she shot a 83-80-85. Prendergast has also finished among the top two women golfers at the last two Hugh Smith Sr. Memorial Open tournaments on St. Thomas.
"This was her fourth time at the junior championships," Rollins said. "She took fourth this time out of 12 golfers and that was her best finish to date at this tournament."
In his third appearance at the Junior Golf Championships, Taylor Singh shot a 86-79-84 to finish ninth out of 18 golfers in the boys 16-17 age division. Omari Rollins took 17th in the same division.
LaVonte Blyden and Ricky James Jr. represented the territory in the boys 11-13 age division while Anamari Morales and Radiance Peets competed in the girls 11-13 age division. Kayla Clendinen competed alongside Prendergast in the girls 14-15 division.
Except for the girls 11-13 division, all golfers had to carry their bags from hole to hole. There was a practice round before the tourney started, so it was four straight days of walking the course and hauling clubs.
"I had them running and walking Mahogany every day after school to train for this," Rollins said. "I'm confident many of them will qualify for Doral in December."
The annual Doral-Publix Junior Golf Classic in Miami, Fla., has traditionally attracted more than 600 junior golfers worldwide. With help from local sponsors, Rollins said the USVI will be represented there again this winter.
To make a donation or to help sponsor the Junior Golf Program at the Mahogany Run Golf Course, call the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands.
- Contact sports writer Aaron Gray at 714-9102 or email email@example.com.