Kuang wins first-ever SCGA Amateur Championship Youth on Course qualifier
For the first time in the Championship’s 115-year history, the SCGA Amateur Championship will this year provide one spot to a deserving SCGA Youth on Course junior golfer. Today, 60 Youth on Course members from all over the Southland battled it out over 18 holes of golf at Brookside Golf Club in Pasadena to secure the final spot into next week’s championship at Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club.
After a par, a fist pump and a huge smile shared with his father, 12-year-old Edwin Kuang of Murrieta walked off the 9th green (his final hole of the day) knowing he had just played the round of his life. Finishing with a 3-under-par 69 on Brookside’s C.W. Koiner Course, Edwin was the early leader in the clubhouse, with the majority of the field still on the course. But it didn’t matter that he had to play the waiting game. He was just happy to have played well.
“I don’t even know what to say right now,” said Edwin. “I really just went out there and swung the club. I didn’t think I would post such a low score.”
Edwin hit his first golf ball at the age of five through a local youth program in Murrieta, his hometown. His parents are not golfers, but with the help of SCGA Youth on Course's Golf Pass, which provides green and range fees at just $1-$5, Edwin’s been able to gain access to affordable rates at local courses, which allowed him to build a passion for the game.
“He really practices hard and often thanks to Youth on Course,” said Vikki Mi, Edwin’s mother. “We wouldn’t be able to support his love of golf otherwise.”
Finishing one stroke behind the leader, Brandon Mai recorded a 70, which was the only other under-par round of the day. Isaiah Aguirre (73), Mason Glinski (74) and Derek Castillo (74) rounded out the top five.
“Today was fun, but tough,” said Edwin. “But I’ve never played 36 holes in one day! Next week is going to be tougher.”
Edwin will tee it up for 36 holes Friday, July 11 in the first round of the 115th SCGA Amateur Championship, an event formerly won by Tiger Woods, Charlie Wi, John Merrick and a slew of other professional golfers. Prior to the Championship, SCGA Youth on Course will host a junior clinic at Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club the night before the 2014 SCGA Amateur Championship, inviting dozens of junior golfers to the property on Thursday, July 10.