By Regina Shiroma
The fourth annual BMW Guam USA Junior Open came to a close Sunday afternoon on its third day of competition. Guam’s youth golfers, as well as youth from Taiwan and Japan, took on the three-day tournament, totaling about 40 participants ranging from age 7 to 18.
“The turnout is fantastic. Our kids from Guam, the repeating players, are coming back and you can see their game is improving seriously. It’s great to see the development of the golf program for juniors,” said Prestige Auto president and President of the Guam Junior Golf League, John Shen.
The international tournament not only gives Guam golfers a chance to hone their skills, but also allows them to gauge the level of competition of their international counterparts.
“It’s a good experience for them to exchange experience about the course together for three days.”
In the girls 15-18 year-old group, Kristin Oberiano finished first out of her age group. Oberiano took first place last year as well. This was Oberiano’s third and final appearance in the league as she graduated from high school this year.
“I think I could’ve done better. I mean, you always look for improvement in all our matches, and I’ve been around the 80’s for a little while, so I really want to get it lower.”
Seventeen year-old Reggie Camacho took first in the 15-18 year-old group. This is also Camacho’s third appearance in the tournament, and is also the defending champion.
“I was satisfied, but I could’ve done a lot better. I left a couple strokes out there,” said Camacho of his performance.
GJGL’s mission is “to promote the game of golf on Guam to Juniors of all skill levels, and to provide introductory, educational, rules, etiquette and competitive programs via top quality coaches and excellent venues, enabling Junior golfers the opportunity to learn the game and to compete globally,” according to their Facebook page.
Shen reiterates saying that this tournament’s intent is “to provide opportunity for every child on Guam to practice to play this game.”
“They have this chance to practice their skills.”
The league holds classes, trainings, and practices at Nimitz golf course every day to help better the quality of junior golf on Guam.
“We want to bring the news out to all the juniors on Guam, whoever wants to try this game, contact us.”
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