Jutanugarn sisters back at Sycamore Hills after year full of victories
2011 JUNIOR PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
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Series: PGA Feature
Ariya Jutanugarn, 15, of Thailand, who will compete in the 36th Junior PGA Championship presented by Under Armour and Heritage F.S.E. beginning Tuesday, defeated Dottie Ardina of the Philippines, in a 36-hole final to win the 2011 U.S. Girls' Junior Championship on the South Course at Olympia Fields (Ill.) Country Club just a week ago.
"I played confident all week and felt very good about my game," said Ariya, who is set to compete in her second Junior PGA Championship. "It was a very exciting week and I was happy to win that tournament."
Ariya, who finished in fourth place in her only other appearance in the Championship in 2010, is excited about returning to Sycamore Hills Golf Club in Fort Wayne, Ind.
"I really enjoyed playing last year and this course was very tough," said Jutanugarn. "I gained a lot of experience from last year and the tournament was so nice. I really want to win."
The 72-hole Championship, Aug. 2-5, will be contested at the Jack Nicklaus-signature layout for the second consecutive year.
Ariya will be joined in Fort Wayne by her older sister, Moriya, who was forced to withdraw from the U.S. Girls' Junior Championship with a wrist injury.
Moriya, 16, has won both the Scott Robertson Memorial and Heather Farr Classic in 2011, while Ariya won the Polo Orange Bowl International Golf Championship in late 2010, and the Junior Girls' Championship in June.
"We play our practice rounds together at every tournament and try to help each other with advice on how to play the golf course," said Moriya. "We still play our own games but we want the other to play well too."
The Jutanugarn sisters, who are ranked 1st [Moriya] and 2nd [Ariya] in the latest Golfweek Junior Rankings, and defending champion Cassy Isagawa of Wailuku, Hawaii, will highlight a deep and talented Girls' Division in the Junior PGA Championship.
Isagawa will be competing in her final junior event before she heads to the University of Oregon on a golf scholarship.
The Boys' division also features a strong field that includes Beau Hossler of Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., who competed in the U.S. Open in June, won the 2011 Junior World Golf Championship in early July and was a quarterfinalist in the U.S. Junior Amateur last week.
The Boys' Division also features Cody Proveaux of Leesville, S.C., the top ranked boy in the field. Proveaux is ranked 4th.
The 156-player field, which features 78 boys and 78 girls, will descend upon Sycamore Hills Golf Club in Northeast Indiana.
This year's field includes past winners of the Championship, PGA Junior Series event champions, PGA Section winners, many of Polo Golf and Golfweek's top-ranked players, and selected national junior tournament winners.
Golf Channel will present a one-hour highlight show of the 36th Junior PGA Championship, with the first airing on Thurs., Sept. 8 at 7:00 p.m. ET.
Begun in 1976, the Junior PGA Championship has traditionally produced unforgettable golf performances and brings together the best junior golfers from around the country to compete for the Jack Nicklaus Trophy in the Boys' division and the Patty Berg Trophy in the Girls' division.
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