Three participants in the state’s First Tee program are getting a chance of a lifetime by being selected to compete with PGA TOUR Champions players this month.
Julia Dai (The First Tee of Greater Seattle), and Dylan Bissell and Maxwell Turnquist (both of The First Tee of Yakima), will compete in the 2016 Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach, an official PGA TOUR Champions event that will be held September 13-18. The event, now in its 13th year, will be televised internationally on Golf Channel.
The three young players will be among 81 juniors nationwide competing from The First Tee, a nonprofit dedicated to youth development through the game of golf. Each was selected by a national panel of judges who evaluated playing ability and comprehension of the life skills and character education learned through their involvement with The First Tee.
(Dai, a junior at Bellevue High School, was listed as one of “Five Players to Watch” by the Seattle Times in this year’s boys and girls golf preview.)
When not honing her own golf skills, Dai volunteers weekly as an assistant golf coach at The First Tee, helping younger players build confidence and character through the sport.
“Being able to play in The Nature Valley First Tee Open is honestly a dream come true, in every meaning of the phrase,” said Dai. “I’m am excited to meet all of the other inspirational First Tee participants from across the country, and hopefully play my best golf next with some of the best golf professionals out there.”
The juniors will be teamed with 81 PGA TOUR Champions players and 162 amateurs as they compete for the pro-junior title at Pebble Beach Golf Links and Poppy Hills Golf Course. Play will be conducted on these courses on Friday (Sept. 16) and Saturday (Sept. 17); the final round will be played on Pebble Beach on Sunday.
For more information, visit www.thefirstteeopen.com.