Preparing for college is a big part of the IJGA experience. Competing against other elite golfers and taking competitive classes both help juniors prepare for the challenges of going to college and playing the sport they love at the next level. This weekend, March 28-29, 2015, students were offered a unique opportunity to turn a tournament weekend into an opportunity to further prepare for college thanks to the International Junior Golf Tour’s (IJGT) Major Championship at Duke University.
On Friday students played a practice round to get acquainted with Duke’s Golf Course. The home of the Blue Devils’Men’s and Women’s golf teams, the Duke University Golf Club introduced students to the feel of being on a college campus. For some students the 8,709 acres of North Carolina scenery in the springtime was their first ever glimpse at a college campus. Particularly for students aspiring to play college golf, a campus visit allows juniors to begin to form opinions about what university features are most appealing and most important.
Saturday was the opening round of competition in less than ideal weather conditions forcing junior golfers to tee off in blustery winds. Despite the conditions, juniors had an evening to look forward to. Following round one all of the competing juniors were offered a tour of Duke University’s Cameron Indoor Stadium, one of the most storied venues in college basketball and perhaps all of college athletics. While the Duke University Blue Devils fought to secure a spot in the Final Four, our juniors were able to walk the court they call home.
Cameron Indoor Stadium is the home of not only the Blue Devils’ Men’s and Women’s basketball teams but also theirWomen’s Volleyball and Men’s Wrestling programs. Originally opened in 1940 the complex has undergone various renovations throughout it’s seven-plus decades and is now celebrating its 75th anniversary.
Students returned to the second and final round of competition on Sunday morning. In review, IJGA Post-Graduate student Brent Rodgers of Cranberry Township, Pa., carded his second-best performance of the season thanks in large part to his back-to-back birdies on holes No. 7 and 8. His commanding drive made the par-3 hole No. 8 look easy as he easily shaved a stroke off his par performance in round one to make birdie in round two.
In the Girls Division, Kayla Kozak of Bluffton, S.C., matched her individual low round twice with a 3-over score of 75 in both rounds. Stephanie Orrell of Ontario, Canada, also matched her season best score. The sophomore also matched her season-best nine-hole score.
Aside from the fact that many people dream of seeing inside the walls of a renowned facility like Cameron Indoor Stadium, the campus visit served a greater purpose. In line with the IJGA’s College Placement Program, juniors are encouraged to take advantage of every opportunity in favor of the College Placement process. During heavy periods of competition, take the time to grow familiar with the area. Before traveling to the tournament, research the nearby colleges or universities and try to incorporate an informal visit to the campus.
For more information on College Placement best practices, click here.