FJT Okeeheelee Open (16-18) *Fall*
September 9-10, 2023
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - This weekend, the 16 to 18 year-old division of the Florida Junior Tour traveled to Okeeheelee Golf Course in West Palm Beach to compete in a 36-hole, stroke-play event. Despite positive forecasts leading into the weekend, players were forced into an over three-hour delay on Saturday. This weekend's competitors’ wills were put to the test as some played more than 27 holes on Sunday. When the final putt dropped, Logan Leistner and Yingshi (Lydia) Lin were alone atop the leaderboard to claim victories.
When the first round was completed on Sunday morning, two players held a share of the lead after recording scores of 3-under par, 69. Arth Sinha, of Oviedo, played mistake-free golf even with the large delay on Saturday and having to wait to complete his round until Sunday. The Oviedo native’s bogey-free round was highlighted by birdies on the par-5 first hole, and par-4 fourth and 16th holes. Also sitting atop the leaderboard was Logan Leistner, of Orlando. The Orlando native took a much different path to 3-under par, 69. After completing his first nine holes at even-par, Leistner went on to birdie his first four holes on the back nine, later adding a bogey to find himself in a tie for first. Talan Wilkes, of Tequesta, Zhengyi (Louie) Liu, of Bradenton, and Braden Miller, of Naples, all completed the first round with scores of 1-under par, 71, just two shots back of the co-leaders.
In the second round, due to the weather delay the day before, players would compete in the same pairings they were a part of in the first round. Early on in the round, Sinha and Leistner, who happened to be playing in the same grouping, created a large margin between themselves and the rest of the field while simultaneously jockeying for the lead. After both players birdied the first hole to get to 4-under par, Leistner would jump ahead after a bogey by Sinha on the par-4 fifth hole. Both players would birdie the par-4 fourth hole, which was followed up by a birdie from the Oviedo native to bring the two back into a tie. On the back nine, Sinha took the solo lead for the first time in the second round, ultimately leading by two shots with just four holes to play. But then, Leistner caught fire and birdied three consecutive holes to regain the lead by one stroke. With a par on the par-3 18th hole, the Orlando native captured his first-ever Florida Junior Tour victory.
Through 18 holes, Youyang Li, of Orlando, sat alone atop the leaderboard with a two-stroke lead. The Orlando native completed an impressively consistent round of 2-under par, 70, highlighted by four birdies. Three players would begin the second round with a share of second place within striking distance of Li. Yingshi (Lydia) Lin, of Orlando, had a rough start to the tournament as she bogeyed two of her first four holes. However, Lin would turn it around and complete the round with a score of even-par, 72. Emma Rynn, of Windermere, recorded three birdies and three bogeys on her way to an 18-hole score of even-par, 72. Mi Li, of Orlando, followed a similar path to the round-one leader, playing consistent golf (two birdies, two bogeys) en-route to a score of even-par, 72.
Then, early in the second round, Lin birdied two of her first three holes while the round-one leader dropped a shot, pulling the two into a tie for first place. While the other competitors looking to rise up the leaderboard failed to do so, the two Orlando natives remained tied at the top with just nine holes left to play. Li regained the lead with a birdie on the par-5 10th hole, but this would be short-lived. On the par-4 12th hole, a double-bogey from Li and a birdie from Lin created a three-shot swing, providing Lin with a two-shot lead, one that proved to be insurmountable. Ultimately, the Class of 2025 member captured a two-shot victory. This win was Lin’s second victory of the year after her victory at the 64th Girls’ Junior Championship this summer.
|Tee||Yardage / Info|
|Boys (16-18)||6,803 yds. / 74.2 / 136|
|Girls (16-18)||5,957 yds. / 75.3 / 134|
|Humid, Thunderstorms||89 °F|
Format: 36 holes, individual gross stroke play
Eligibility: Boys and Girls (16-18) (age calculated from the last day of the event)
Field Determination: FJT exemptions, random draw, 84 player field
Practice Round Information: $35 + tax
Divisions and Approximate Yardages
- Boys (16-18) - 7,000 yards (gross only)
- Girls (16-18) - 6,000 yards (gross only)
How Entries are Accepted
- Players with an unused FJT exemption will be accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis (if submitted before the entry deadline).
- Players without an FJT exemption - all other entries are held until the entry closing date. Shortly after the closing date, a computer-generated random draw is performed to determine which entries are accepted, and the order of the alternates. All players are notified of their status after the random draw is conducted,
- An alternates list will be posted to the FSGA website under "Tee Times & Player Information".
- Entries submitted after the entry deadline will be added to the bottom of the alternates list or used to fill any openings in the field.
Schedule of Events
Saturday, September 9th
11:00 AM - 1:30 PM - Tournament Registration (near pro shop)
12:00 PM - 1:57 PM Round one tee times off the 1st and 10th tees.
Sunday, September 10th
7:30 AM - 9:27 AM - Final round tee times off the 1st and 10th tees
Approximately 2:30 PM - Awards presentation
How to Enter
Entries are submitted through the FSGA website. To enter, each player must create an FSGA account on this website (free to set-up), purchase a current Junior Membership ($40), and have an active Florida GHIN Handicap (included in membership if golfer does not already have one). To proceed, click the "Enter" button above once entries have opened.
Late Entry Fee: A late fee of $10 will be applied to entries submitted after the close of entries date. The entry fee and late fee will only be applied if the player gets accepted in to the tournament field.
Practice rounds are available one week prior to the tour
nament on a space-available basis. Tee times are only available after 12:00 noon the weekend prior. The price for a practice round is $35.00 + tax. Please call (561) 964-4653 to arrange your practice round.The proper place to practice your golf swing is on the driving range, hitting multiple shots on the course, not filling divots, and not repairing ball marks are unacceptable and may cause removal from the tournament without a refund.
TrackMan Sessions Available
We are pleased to offer tournament participants the opportunity to utilize our TrackMan launch monitor, and to have his/her swing recorded on Friday, September 8th. Specifics will be included in the pre-event email. There is no charge for this service. All information will be posted to the junior's FSGA profile for college coaches to view. Click here for more information.
AJGA Performance Based Entry (PBE)
|Champion - 8 Stars||Champion - 8 Stars|
|Top 5 - 4 Stars||Top 3 - 4 Stars|
|Top 10 - 1 Star||Top 5 - 1 Star|
Florida Junior Tour Policies
Hampton Inn West Palm Beach Florida Turnpike
Address: 2025 Vista Parkway, West Palm Beach, FL, 33411
Phone: (561) 682-9990
- Rates Available: 9/7/23 - 9/10/23
- Standard King Bed - $129/night
- Double/Double Queen beds - $129/night
- Book your roon here.
Booking Deadline: August 17th, 2023
Okeeheelee Golf Club
7715 Forest Hill Blvd.
West Palm Beach, FL 33413
Click here for directions.