Hana Ku, a member of Ridge High School's state champion girls golf team and an upcoming senior, has been chosen to be among eight players from the nation who will represent the USA in two days of competition and cultural friendship at CordeValle Golf Resort in California.
The United States Golf Association, based in the Far Hills section of Bernards Township, has announced that a team of four boys and four girls has been selected to represent the United States in the USA-China Youth Golf Match, a competition conducted by the USGA and the China Golf Association to promote cultural friendship through the game of golf.
The USA-China Youth Golf Match is scheduled for Aug. 23-24 at the CordeValle Golf Resort in San Martin, Calif.
USGA officials announced the Team USA members, all of whom are age 16 or younger, as selected by a committee for the USGA and American Junior Golf Association, said USGA spokesman Dan Hubbard.
Each player, including Ku, was chosen on the basis being an accomplished golfer, a member of Leadership Links, a jointly administered program of the USGA and the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) that promotes service and volunteerism among aspiring junior golfers, Hubbard said.
Ku has been a top player for the Ridge High School girls golf team, which this past May took the state Champions of Tournament match for a second year in a row, following an undefeated season.
"This is a group of extremely capable kids both on and off the golf course and the golf course, and they are being recognized for that by being invited to play in this match," Hubbard said.
Each of the players heading to California also is a leading candidate for a future USGA-AJGA Presidents' Leadership Award. The Team USA players are: Patrick Cover, 16, of Huntersville, N.C.; Sebastian Crampton, 16, of Pacific Grove, Calif.; Jessica Kittelberger, 16, of Raleigh, N.C.; Hana Ku, 16, of Basking Ridge, N.J.; Divya Manthena, 15, of Camarillo, Calif.; Michael Pisciotta, 16, of Alpharetta, Ga.; Calli Ringsby, 16, of Cherry Hills Village, Colo.; and Thomas Walsh, 16, of High Point, N.C.
“This match is a wonderful opportunity to promote the game of golf,” said USGA President Glen D. Nager. “The young men and women representing the U.S. team will serve as ambassadors for everything that is great about the game here in America. While the competition will certainly be front and center, the sharing of the game’s spirit, traditions and camaraderie will be of equal importance.”
The USA-China Youth Golf Match will consist of four foursomes (alternate-shot) matches, four four-ball matches and eight single matches over two days of competition. An inaugural Youth Match was held in 2008 in China in conjunction with the Beijing Olympics, with Team USA prevailing.
“As golf grows internationally, fostering inclusion in the game worldwide is important to the USGA,” Nager said. “Together with our partners at The R&A, we are committed to working with emerging golf markets such as China to promote a sustainable game for future generations.”
Following the conclusion of the Youth Match, a delegation from the China Golf Association will visit the headquarters of the USGA at 77 Liberty Corner Road in Bernards Township to learn more about the Association’s role in the global game.
Biographical information on the players from both teams is available at www.usga.org, the official website of the USGA.
Rolex, a USGA corporate partner, has provided significant assistance to the conduct of the match through its worldwide presence in golf. It will host a dinner to celebrate the achievements of each player and the competition between the two countries. About the USGA The USGA conducts the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Senior Open, as well as the national amateur championships, two state team championships and international matches. Together with The R&A, the USGA governs the game worldwide, jointly administering the Rules of Golf, Rules of Amateur Status, Equipment Standards and World Amateur Golf Rankings. The USGA’s working jurisdiction comprises the United States, its territories and Mexico.
The USGA is a global leader in the development and support of sustainable golf course management practices. It serves as a primary steward for the game’s history and funds an ongoing “For the Good of the Game” charitable giving program. Additionally, the USGA’s Course Rating and Handicap systems are used on six continents in more than 50 countries.
More information about the USGA is online.