Young golfers savor JPGT stint


Winners of the inaugural ICTSI Junior PGT Series display their medals and prizes after the 18-hole stroke play finals at The Country Club yesterday. They are (from left) Jiwon Lee (15-18), Isabella Tabanas (13-14), Precious Zaragosa (11-12), Quincy Pilac (9-10), Jared Saban (9-10), Ralph Batican (11-12), Patrick Tambalque (13-14) and Zeus Sara (15-18). –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Young golfers relished the experience they gained from the pioneering ICTSI Junior PGT which concluded last Tuesday at The Country Club in Laguna.

Patrick Tambalque and Ji Won Lee from Korea captured the boys’ 13-14 and girls’ 15-18 crowns, respectively, while  Jared Saban and Quincy Pilac (9-10), Ralph Batican and Precious Zaragosa (11-12), Isabella Tabanas (girls’ 13-14) and Zeus Sara (boys’ 15-18) triumphed in their respective divisions.

“It’s very competitive and I was very honored to have won the championship. I learned and improved a lot in this journey,  not just in JPGT but in every tournament. But this JPGT Series is very special to me,” said Lee, who has also campaigned on the Ladies Philippine Golf Tour.

Tambalque and Tabanas, who shared the 13-14 trophies in the series put up by ICTSI and organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc., also both enjoyed the JPGT journey even as they expect to come out better and stronger for their future campaigns.

Patrick Tambalque golf JPGT

Patrick Tambalque. –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

“You just have to keep on fighting and always stick to your game plan,” said Tambalque, who swept the last two legs of the five-round eliminations to get into the finals then nipped Clement Ordeneza in sudden death to snare the crown.

Tabanas, meanwhile, said her JPGT tint comes as a confidence boost despite her scores and it helped her figure out points for improvement.

“My overall experience wasn’t good (because of my score) but it wasn’t bad. I had ups-and-downs and had problems with my driving and short game,” said Tabanas’ “But this win has definitely boosted my confidence a lot, considering it’s my first time and the TCC is a hard course. But I should focus on my short game.

Sara, the winner of the boys 15-18 category and frequent junior golf tournament campaigner, pointed out the innovations that made JPGT experience different.

“Throughout the JPGT Series, I learned that even if you had one bad round, you can always bounce back in the next. There’s a lot of chances and I turned those (chances) into results,” Sara said. “The JPGT is very different from other junior golf tournaments, including the live scoring.” –Celest Flores-Colina

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