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Nobelle Park and Gabriel Mainella Winners at Ontario Junior Players Invitational

A perfect day for golf in Myrtle Beach, S.C., was underscored by the thrilling final round of the Ontario Junior Players Invitational at the scenic Moorland Course of Legends Golf Resorts.

In the girls’ competition, Nobelle Park of RattleSnake Point Golf Club, leading after the first round, proved unbeatable. The Team Ontario athlete sailed through her even-par final round to clinch the title. Her Team Ontario teammate, Aryn Matthews of Bigwin Island Golf Club, closely followed throughout the round but couldn’t narrow the gap despite posting a strong 72 on her scorecard. Alexa Ouellet of Weston Golf & Country Club, another Team Ontario member, finished in third place.

Park’s performance on the back nine, featuring birdies on the 15th and 16th, secured her victory at one-over par for the tournament.

On the boys side, Gabriel Mainella of Summit Golf & Country Club emerged victorious after a day-long battle with Bode Stephen from Cataraqui Golf & Country Club, claiming the boys division title. Jordan Hwang of Emerald Hills Golf & Country Club took third place, achieving the tournament’s lowest score of 69 in his final round.

Mainella’s win was highlighted by five birdies, including a two-under par on the back nine, enabling him to win by a single stroke over Stephen, with both players scoring 69 on the final day. Mainella shared his excitement about the victory, saying, “obviously a big tournament and my first win… it’s a tough stretch of holes down the back and I kind of got nervous…but excited I got the win.

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Tournament Director, Connor Doyle, highlighted the excellent start to the season, noting the excitement of the tournament’s conclusion.

Golf Ontario expressed gratitude towards Legends Golf Resort and its staff for their outstanding hospitality during the past week.

The 77-player field featured many of Ontario’s top junior golfers, all of whom were looking to take home the championship title from the challenging and beautiful Moorland Course at the Legends Golf Resorts.

This year’s event saw an extension to 54 holes, an increase from last year’s 36 holes. Furthermore, participants have the opportunity to earn points towards the World Amateur Golf Ranking and Junior Golf Scoreboard rankings.

For the full leaderboard and final round tee times, CLICK HERE.

FAST FACTS

championship Golf Ontario junior golf pathway junior players invitational next wave team ontario

Ontario’s Top-Ranked Juniors Tee Off in Myrtle Beach


Golf Ontario kicked off its 2024 championship schedule with the Ontario Junior Players Invitational Monday in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Team Ontario’s Nobelle Park of Rattlesnake Golf Club and last year’s second-place finisher, leads in the girls’ division thru 36 holes. Park delivered commendable scores of 74 and 73, securing a two-stroke advantage over her Team Ontario teammate Aryn Matthews of Bigwin Island Golf Club, who posted scores of 72 and 77, finishing at 3-over par.

In the boys’ division, Next Wave athlete Gabriel Mainella of the Summit Golf & Country Club, climbed to the top of the leaderboard with solid rounds of 74 and 73, bolstered by eight birdies on the first day. He enters the final round with a one-stroke lead over Team Ontario’s Bode Stephen of Cataraqui Golf & Country Club, who carded rounds of 72 and 75 to stand at 5-over.

The 77-player field features many of Ontario’s top junior golfers, all of whom are looking to take home the championship title from the challenging and beautiful Moorland Course at the Legends Golf Resorts.

The competitions biggest change this year is the extension to 54 holes, an increase from last year’s 36 holes. Furthermore, participants have the opportunity to earn points towards the World Amateur Golf Ranking and Junior Golf Scoreboard rankings.

“It was great to see how well the players handled the 36 holes today, we should be in for an exciting finish,” Ontario Players Invitational Tournament Director Connor Doyle says.

The tournament concludes on Tuesday with the final 18 holes, starting at 8 a.m. from both the 1st and 10th tees.

For the full leaderboard and final round tee times, CLICK HERE.

QUOTABLES

“I’m nervous for tomorrow … but I hope play wel l… it’s tough competition.”
Nobelle Park, Team Ontario Athlete,

“Today was definitely fun. I started off the day really well with an even par… but quickly kind of on the back stretch … lost a little bit in the second round.”
— Aryn Matthews, Team Ontario Athlete

“The conditions were tough, it was windy and cold in the the start of the morning. Feel like I did really good at the start. Pushed through the windy conditions.”
— Gabriel Mainella, Next Wave Athlete

FAST FACTS

Seven of the Top 10 Girls are Team Ontario Athlete

Lowest Girls Score of the day: Team Ontario’s Alexa Ouellet, 69

Six of the Top 10 Boys are Team Ontario

Lowest Boys score was 72: By 5 players

Course scoring average was 81.6

Team Ontario athlete and third-place finisher at last year’s Junior Players Invitational, Jordan Hwang of Emerald Hills Golf & Country Club, currently sits third again.

Social Handles: @thegolfontario on Instagram, Facebook and X

championship Golf Ontario junior golf pathway junior players invitational next wave team ontario

Championship Season Kicks Off in Myrtle Beach

Golf Ontario’s 2024 championship schedule kicks off in Myrtle Beach, S.C., with the Ontario Junior Players Invitational.

The 77-player field features many of Ontario’s top junior golfers, all of whom are looking to take home the championship title which will be contested March 11-12 at impressive Moorland Course at the Legends Golf Resorts.

This year marks the event’s second installment, featuring significant updates. Notably, the competition will extend over 54 holes, an increase from last year’s 36 holes. Furthermore, participants will now have the opportunity to earn points towards the World Amateur Golf Ranking and Junior Golf Scoreboard rankings.

John Lawrence, Golf Ontario’s Director of Competitions and Performance, expressed enthusiasm about this year’s enhancements to the events. “Launching our championship season with the Ontario Junior Players Invitational is thrilling,” Lawrence says. “Expanding the championship to 54 holes and including ranking points elevates the players’ experience, mirroring the collegiate competition atmosphere.”

The invitational will see players take on 36-holes on Monday, with the final 18-holes coming on Tuesday.

This year’s field includes all 16 Team Ontario members as well as 10 Next Wave athletes. The field is rounded out by an impressive group of players who were offered invites based on their 2023 performance.

For first round pairings, CLICK HERE.

FIELD NOTES

Among the 78-players in the 2024 Ontario Junior Players Invitational, there are:

Team Ontario: All 16 members of Team Ontario are in the invitational’s field. They are: Alexa Oueullet; Angela Cai; Aryn Matthews; Bridget Yu; Kaprice Park; Nobelle Park; Shelby Hardwick; Wendy Li; Ben Sheridan; Bode Stephen; Chase Jerome; Dawson Lew; Graydon Laughlin; Jordan Hwang; Nathaniel Yoo; Rylan Hall.

Next Wave: 10 of the 15 athletes from the recently announced 2024 Next Wave program.

Top Junior Golf Pathway Ranking Players: Boys—Jordan Hwang, No. 4, U19 and U17; Chase Jerome, No. 1, U15. Girls—Nobelle Park, No. 2, U19, U17 and U15.

Youngest Players: Ava Gilbert, 12. Max Li, 13.

PLAYER NOTES

Brampton Golf Club’s Manav Bharani, winner of the 2023 Ontario Bantam (U15) Boys Championship makes his Players Invitational debut.

2023 Ontario Super Camp and Junior Tour Champion, and Team Ontario athlete Alexa Ouellet of Weston Golf and Country Club.

Last year’s runner up, the No. 2-ranked player on the 2023 Junior Golf Pathway Rankings and Team Ontario athlete Nobelle Park of Rattlesnake Golf Club.

Team Ontario athlete and third-place finisher at last year’s Junior Players Invitational, Jordan Hwang of Emerald Hills Golf & Country Club.

FAST FACTS

Championship Venue: The Moorland Course at The Legends Resort

Championship Dates: March 11-12

Field: 78 players

Format: 54-hole, stroke play

Leaderboard Link: https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/9986953813031962870

Fun Fact: Golf Digest once rated the Moorland Course the 37th toughest golf course in America.

Social Handles: @thegolfontario on Instagram, Facebook and X

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Golf Ontario Announces Next Wave Junior Development Program

Golf Ontario proudly introduces the 2024 Next Wave Junior Development Program, designed to nurture and elevate the skills of Ontario’s young golfers.

This thoughtful initiative aims to blend specialized training with ongoing support, providing a solid foundation for the province’s future stars to shine in the competitive golf landscape.

“We’re so proud and excited to introduce the Next Wave Junior Development Program and all the 15 young athletes who will be part of the program in 2024,” says Golf Ontario’s Chief Sport Officer, Ryan Finn. “We truly believe this program aligns with everything we’re already doing with the Junior Golf Pathway, but also adds another layer of development that is directly aimed at junior golf athletes who are looking to advance in their competitive journey.”

The 2024 Next Wave Junior Development Program includes members (with their personal coaches in parentheses):

Targeted towards junior-aged athletes competing in local, regional, and provincial championships, the program is dedicated to helping them fulfill their aspirations of becoming members of Team Ontario, Team Canada, and earning spots on collegiate golf teams. The program is centered around the mental, physical, technical, and tactical facets of golf, the program offers early access to specialized team training; setting the stage for their future achievements.

Next Wave athletes will enjoy exclusive benefits, such as: Coaching support from Team Ontario Head Coach, Reggie Millage; sessions with Team Ontario Mental Performance Coach, Dr. Charles Fitzsimmons, strength and conditioning coaching by Dr. Nick Martichenko; Next Wave athlete clothing from adidas Golf Canada; and access to the TaylorMade Performance Lab.

Additionally, Next Wave athletes can sign up for exclusive Team Ontario programs like Training Days, March Break Training Camp, and the Spring Training Camp.

Selection for the program is based on the athletes’ competitive performances and rankings in the U13, U15, and U17 divisions of the Junior Golf Pathway from the last season.

Golf Ontario looks forward to the prospects the Next Wave Junior Development Program offers to Ontario’s emerging golf stars and the association extends gratitude to TaylorMade Golf CanadaAdidas Golf Canada, and Humber College for their support of this transformative initiative.