Practice rounds for the 67th U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship are complete and field has taken its last look at Tulsa Country Club before the start of the championship on Monday, July 20. Themes have emerged, most notably that the 6,076-yard, par-70 course places an emphasis on precision. The following are impressions from several U.S. Girls’ Junior competitors on what it will take to be successful this week.
Courtney Dow, 17, Frisco, Texas
"It's definitely a shotmaker's course. You've got to put the ball in the right position so you can play the angles. Hitting the fairways is going to be key to make sure you never take par out of play off the tee. Keep giving yourself chances to hit greens, and maybe make some putts. I think pars are going to be good scores and keeping it in play is going to be really important. I'd say it's pretty similar to the courses I play in Texas, same types of grasses and everything, but it's a lot tighter. I'm usually pretty accurate off the tee, so that will help me. I feel like the course sets up pretty well for my game."
Mariel Galdiano, 17, Pearl City, Hawaii
"The rough is shorter than the U.S. Women’s Open, for sure! The fairways are pretty similar, though, because they’re pretty narrow here. I think it’s a great course and is really good for this championship."
Megan Khang, 17, Rockland, Mass.
"The golf course is a little difficult off the tee. You have to be patient out here because it’s going to be a little tricky with the wind. So if you do hit good shots, you’ve got to take advantage of that and you’ve got to be patient because there’s only two par 5s out here. Some holes are made shorter for us, so you have to think hard about what to hit off the tee. Other than that, you have to be more aggressive rather than laying back on some of these tougher holes. It’s a good challenge out here. It’s definitely championship material."
Jaelyn Tindal, 17, Rock Hill, S.C.
"I love the course. It’s a lot of fun to play. You have to hit good shots, and when you hit good shots, it pays off. I love bentgrass greens, so I’m happy with them. The front nine has some long holes, and the length could be challenging."
Alex Wright, 17, Midlothian, Va.
"The course has some tricky tee shots, so precision off the tee and knowing where you're trying to go is going to be important. You really have to think and have a strategy. I only used my driver maybe twice during each practice round. I guess you could say I'm a longer hitter, but some of the holes you really have to get into a certain position so you can have a better shot into the greens, so driver probably isn't the best play sometimes. Every person here always has a chance; that's how I think of it. Everybody starts in first place."
Angel Yin, 16, Arcadia, Calif.
"It's playing quite short, but the par 5s are long. You can get in the rough really easily, and I've been in the rough a lot over the last two days during the practice rounds. I've been carrying a lot of the hazards and obstacles in the way, so it's not bothering me too much. I expected the greens to be a little faster, but the greens have been slower so you have to actually work for your putts. It's going to be a little challenging to get the ball to the hole. But the course is in great condition. The rough is really nice. And I really like the way the course sets up."