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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, November 16, 2006

PGA of America helps juniors grow

 •  Hamamoto, Hayashi fueled by 'pride thing'

Advertiser Staff

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PGA of America will donate $50,000 to Kaua'i Junior Golf and the Hawai'i State Junior Golf Association. The PGA Foundation will pledge $35,000 to the HSJGA. Kaua'i Junior Golf will get $15,000 from next week's PGA Grand Slam of Golf for its involvement with the annual tournament.

"The PGA of America has helped us build the Hawai'i State Junior Golf Association by providing seed money, while their members have helped with their time and talent," said Mary Bea Porter-King, president of both the Kaua'i and Hawai'i associations. "These generous donations will help both associations by providing more opportunities for our juniors to learn and play this great game and move up to the next level."

Since 1997, Kaua'i Junior Golf has partnered with the PGA Grand Slam of Golf, which features golf's major champions, to involve junior players with the tournament.

"We are pleased to be able to give back to juniors in the state of Hawai'i who have, over the years, been such an integral part of the success of the PGA Grand Slam of Golf," said PGA of America president Roger Warren. "With these donations, we can help grow the game of golf."

This year, the tournament and County of Kaua'i will team to provide a Pro-Am opportunity for Kaua'i's Players of the Year. Mayor Bryan Baptiste donated the county's playing spot and the Grand Slam matched that to allow Travis Toguchi and Miki Ueoka to play.

The Grand Slam, with Tiger Woods, Mike Weir, Jim Furyk and Geoff Ogilvie, is televised by TNT. The Pro-Am is Monday, followed by the first round Tuesday and final round Wednesday. TV coverage starts at 2 p.m. Tuesday and 1 p.m., Wednesday. The purse has been raised to $1.25 million, with the winner receiving a record $500,000, second place $300,000, third place $250,000, and fourth place $200,000.

Tickets are available at 800-PGA-GOLF (742-4653) or online at www.PGA.com.


State high school runner-up Sean Maekawa, a Honoka'a senior, signed a letter of intent to play golf next fall at Oregon. The signing was announced by new head coach Casey Martin.

Maekawa finished 11th at the USGA Junior America Championships in July. He has won three junior events since April.

"Sean is an excellent ball-striker and a tireless worker," Martin said in a press release. "He drives 50 minutes to practice every day. He's definitely one of the top junior players in the nation."

Oregon became interested in Maekawa through another Hawai'i golfer, 'Iolani grad Matt Ma, a senior at Oregon this year.

Maekawa shot 4-under-par 31 on the front nine Saturday and went on to win the inaugural Makalei Amateur Championship. His rounds of 69-76 gave him an 11-shot victory over David Masterson. The tournament and lu'au benefited FRIENDS of the Children's Justice Center of West Hawai'i and Kona Junior Golf.


Hawai'i's junior Fab Four Tadd Fujikawa, Stephanie Kono, Ayaka Kaneko and Kimberly Kim will play in the 29th Polo Golf Junior Classic. It begins Monday in Sea Island, Ga., with the match play final scheduled for next Friday.

The field of 160 girls and boys includes 79 of the 96 recently named Rolex Junior All-Americans, including all four Hawai'i golfers. They will play at Seaside and Plantation Courses at Sea Island Golf Club. Former champions include Tiger Woods, Stewart Cink, Paula Creamer and Morgan Pressel.

Fujikawa, a Moanalua sophomore, reached the final last year before falling. This year he became the youngest player in history to qualify and compete in the U.S. Open.

Kaneko and Kono are juniors, at Sacred Hearts and Punahou. Kim, originally from Hilo, is now a sophomore in Arizona.


The 2006 State Senior Amateur Championship at Kane'ohe Klipper, postponed earlier this month because of bad weather, has been rescheduled for Dec. 2 and 3. Golfers go out from 11:30 a.m. Saturday and 6:44 a.m. Sunday. Entries are being accepted through Monday and are available online (hawaiistategolf.org). For more information, call Hawai'i State Golf Association (589-2909).

Mike Moynahan, owner of Kama'aina Clubmakers in Kula, was recently named one of the 2006-2007 Top 10 Worldwide Clubmakers of the Year by the Golf Clubmakers Association. It is the third year in a row Moynahan has been selected.