ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Sixty juniors from The First Tee facilities worldwide have been selected to play in the fourth-annual Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach. The 60 juniors were among over 120 participants who took part in The First Tee Participant Selection Process at Kansas State University and Colbert Hills Golf Course, July 17-25. The First Tee Participant Selection Process is exclusive to participants in the program and evaluates their playing ability and comprehension of the life skills and core lessons learned through the program.
The Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach is an official Champions Tour tournament that pairs 78 junior golfers with 78 professionals and 156 amateurs. The tournament will take place Aug. 27- Sept. 2, 2007 on Pebble Beach Golf Links and Del Monte Golf Course, and will be televised nationally on The GOLF Channel.
The following juniors (40 boys and 20 girls) have been selected to represent The First Tee during the Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach:
Boys: 1. Dustin Allen -- The First Tee of Savannah 2. JD Archibald -- The First Tee of Ventura County 3. Shepherd Archie -- The First Tee of Augusta * 4. Brad Carrico -- The First Tee of Greater Sacramento * 5. Robert Carter -- The First Tee of Central Arkansas * 6. Jan Jaro -- The First Tee of Jacksonville 7. Kyle Holden -- The First Tee of Ventura County 8. Michael Holmes -- The First Tee of St. Petersburg 9. Randon Holt -- The First Tee of Atlanta 10. Gabe Hyde -- The First Tee of Greater Birmingham 11. Ryan Irish -- The First Tee of Greater Sacramento 12. Joe Lee -- The First Tee of Metropolitan New York 13. John Marconyak -- The First Tee of Hampton Roads * 14. Adam Morrison -- The First Tee of Chattanooga 15. Sam Mysock -- The First Tee of Tulsa 16. Alvin Or -- The First Tee of San Diego 17. Daniel Ortega -- The First Tee of San Antonio 18. Casey Payawal -- The First Tee of San Francisco * 19. Jeremy Phillipo -- The First Tee of Tulsa 20. Marvin Phisitkraiyakorn -- The First Tee of Metropolitan New York 21. Richard Powell -- The First Tee of Chattanooga 22. Lee Prince -- The First Tee of Tulsa 23. Andres Pumariega -- The First Tee of Miami 24. Kyle Raymond -- The First Tee of Greater Austin 25. Andrew Roberts -- The First Tee of Greater Sacramento 26. Nick Schaefer -- The First Tee of Greater Sacramento 27. Garrett Sieger -- The First Tee of Beaver Falls 28. Chris Steele -- The First Tee of Richmond & Chesterfield 29. Billy Stevens -- The First Tee of Sarasota/Manatee 30. Daniel Stewart -- The First Tee of The North Bay 31. Michael Swope -- The First Tee of Richmond & Chesterfield 32. Ryan Thill -- The First Tee of Greater Austin 33. Keller Tomassi -- The First Tee of Atlanta 34. John Toungate -- The First Tee of Greater Austin 35. Jeffrey Tran -- The First Tee of Augusta 36. Brandon Urbano -- The First Tee of Greater Sacramento 37. Brandon Vicory -- The First Tee of Aurora 38. Aaron Watkins -- The First Tee of Pine Mountain 39. Jonathan Woo -- The First Tee of Singapore * 40. Jonathan Wyble -- The First Tee of Tampa Bay
Girls: 1. Haley Andreas -- The First Tee of Monterey County 2. Katie Canadas -- The First Tee of Modesto 3. Lauren Conder -- The First Tee of Contra Costa 4. Ellese Dias -- The First Tee of Contra Costa 5. Amanda D'Ostroph -- The First Tee of the Sandhills 6. Erin Fuchik -- The First Tee of Tulsa 7. Amber Hardeman -- The First Tee Dallas * 8. Jennifer Hooper -- The First Tee of St. Johns County 9. Anna Jenks -- The First Tee of Portland 10. Kristle Koh -- The First Tee of Singapore 11. Natalie Koh -- The First Tee of Singapore * 12. Elizabeth Kresock -- The First Tee of Denver 13. Ariel Leigh -- The First Tee of Greater Austin 14. Gabrielle McNary -- The First Tee of Houston/F.M. Law Park 15. Anne McNiel -- The First Tee of St. Johns County 16. Jordan Nixon -- The First Tee of Salina 17. Viviana Perez -- The First Tee of Richmond & Chesterfield 18. Ashlee Rose -- The First Tee of Lexington * 19. Kristen Tan -- The First Tee of Greater Seattle 20. Jacqueline Williams -- The First Tee of Greater Sacramento
*Juniors making return appearance
"It is quite gratifying to see that the field of The First Tee participants moving on to Pebble Beach has expanded from 40 to 60 this year. These young people displayed excellent golf skills and knowledge of the life skills curriculum during the Participant Selection Process and will now have the opportunity to showcase their talent for a nationwide audience," said The First Tee Executive Director Joe Louis Barrow, Jr. "It is a pleasure to join Wal-Mart, the Champions Tour and the Monterey Peninsula Foundation for the fourth year in a row to provide these young people with an opportunity to play and learn from some of the game's greatest golfers."
"From both the expanded field of juniors this year, the quality of their play and their strong character traits, it's apparent that there will be a mutual learning experience between our Champions Tour players and these fine young adults who embody so much of what The First Tee and this tournament are all about," said Champions Tour President Rick George. "The Champions Tour players set such a great example for these juniors by imparting their golf skills and wisdom, but moreover, our players enjoy the experience of interacting with these young men and women and come away from the week enriched as well. Wal-Mart and the Monterey Peninsula Foundation provide the stage for this to happen and The First Tee and Champions Tour are beneficiaries of their strong commitment to an exceptional week for everyone involved."
The First Tee Participant Selection Process evaluated participants both on and off the golf course through a series of interviews, essays and a 36-hole golf proficiency event. A committee of representatives from The First Tee and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. selected the participants based on the following criteria:
· Proficiency on the golf course
· Personal interviews
· Life Skills Certification level and curriculum knowledge
· Personal essay describing the impact of The First Tee on their lives
· Letter of recommendation from a Chapter representative
· Summary of community involvement, awards/recognitions and extracurricular activities
The First Tee participants will join 10 juniors who qualified for the Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach through a Regional Open Qualifier that took place in June. These qualifying events were 18-hole, stroke-play competitions open to all junior golfers. The eight remaining
junior spots will be determined by exemptions awarded by the Monterey Peninsula Foundation, the tournament host organization. Visit The First Tee at http://www.thefirsttee.org to view complete field.
"We've been very proud to see the pride and excitement of the young golfers as they have participated in the Participant Selection Process to compete for a spot in the upcoming Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach presented by Nature Valley," said Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Vice Chairman and Chief Administrative Officer John Menzer, "At Wal-Mart, we work to serve our communities in any way we can. We are very honored to help provide such important resources to our youth and support the neighborhoods where we serve through The First Tee."
"This is a magical event," states Ollie Nutt, president & CEO of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation. "We are looking forward to another terrific group of youth teaming up with the legends of golf on world famous Pebble Beach."