Augusta region to host series of golf events in next few weeks

MORE TOURNEYS AHEAD
Nicholas Reach is awarded the gold jacket by PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem after winning the Junior Invitational at Sage Valley in Graniteville.

The best players from around the world will descend upon the region – again.

Augusta is considered the “Golf Capital of the World,” and not just because of the Masters Tournament.

In the next month, the area will play host to five events sure to draw interest on the state, regional, national and international level. The biggest of them: The Junior Invitational at Sage Valley.

In two weeks, 16 of the top 20, including 18 international players representing 15 countries, will play in a tournament that was named the No. 1 junior event in the world by Golfweek last year. The tournament runs April 20-22 and is held at the private club just off Interstate 20 in Graniteville.

Two of the top five players in the Golfweek rankings live close to the private club. Matt NeSmith of North Augusta and Cody Proveaux of Leesville, S.C., are ranked Nos. 3 and 4, according to the latest rankings. No. 1 Shun Yat Hak and No. 2 A.J. McInerney also are entered, as is No. 5 Connor Black.

“I know a good bit of the field coming. It is absolutely wonderful,” NeSmith said. “The quality of field couldn’t be much better than last year, but I’m sure it will be.”

Next week, the Collegiate Disc Golf Championships will be held in the city. In 12 regular season events, 70 schools participated in the club sport.

Later in the month, the NGA Tour will hold the first of two consecutive events in the area. In McCormick, S.C., the popular Savannah Lakes Village Classic will be held April 26-29 at Monticello Golf Club. The tour moves to North Augusta’s Mount Vintage Plantation Golf Club for the Kandy Waters Memorial Classic the following week.

Finally, the Georgia High School Association is holding all 10 of its 2012 state championships (boys and girls) May 7, in the Augusta area.

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