The Wyndham Cup is one of the American Junior Golf Association’s most anticipated events on the schedule. The top 10 girls and boys from the East and West coast come together in a Ryder Cup-style tournament. For many, the Wyndham Cup is the final tournament of their career playing in the AJGA, but for BGGA, this year is just the beginning.
Rising junior and University of Florida verbal commit Maria Hoyos joined Bishops Gate Golf Academy at the end of 2014, and in just 6 months skyrocketed onto the first page of the Polo Golf Rankings. Her six-month surge earned her a spot on this year’s East team, captained by the AJGA’s Katie Tahara and Mark Oskarson. Joining Maria on the East team is new BGGA student and rising senior Ana Paula Valdes.
The three-day tournament features two four-ball matches, two foursome matches, and a final-day singles match. During day one’s four-ball match, Maria and Ana Paula were paired together. On hole No. 14, the girls carded a clutch birdie, taking their match back to all square. Both girls fought off the West team’s birdies and managed to halve the match, giving the East its first half-point.
During day two’s foursome, Maria and Ana Paula were paired together once more. Again, the girls stayed right on their opponent’s heels, managing to keep the match at all square for the majority of the round. Both Maria and Ana Paula are generally calm players, but the passion and pride that fills the air around the Wyndham Cup was contagious. After every putt dropped, the girls were fist-pumping and high-fiving, letting the West know they were not going to go down easy.
Entering the final day, the girls stepped onto the course for their singles matches. Ana Paula held her match to all square for most of the day, but eventually came one shot shy of a halved match. Maria again fought neck and neck with her opponent, swapping birdies back and forth. Maria carried her match through all 18 holes, eventually halving the match.
The West will still retain the cup, but #GoEast is still proud of an incredible week of golf. At the end of the day, the pride of playing for your region takes over the pain of not bringing home the Wyndham Cup. For BGGA, this is the first year of knowing what that pride feels like. We can’t wait for all the years to come. #GoEast.