The first groups will tee-off at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday at the magnificent Stonehenge Golf Club layout in Winona Lake. The course is playing host to the event for the second straight year.
The field, which includes 112 boys and 36 girls, was filled Sunday as a qualifying round was held at Stonehenge for the final six spots in the tournament. The American Junior Golf Association holds about 90-95 of these events each year across the country and players such as Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelsen have played in AJGA tournaments.
The tourney, whose major sponsors include orthopedic giants Zimmer, Biomet and DePuy along with the Cerulean Restaurant in Winona Lake, includes a dozen players from the area.
Ben Barkey, WCHS boys golf coach, is the tourney chairman. Six of his golfers from the outstanding WCHS program, which tied for sixth place at the Indiana State Finals in June, are among those in the talent-laden field.
The Tigers will be represented by seniors Jon Schram, Tim Ahlersmeyer and Evan Cultice, juniors Ryan Cultice and Jared Essig and sophomore Josh Ahlersmeyer. Schram tied for eighth among individuals in the State Finals with a two-round total of 147.
Schram, who is ranked 89th nationally in his age group, will tee off at 8:50 a.m. Tuesday. Tim Ahlersmeyer is slated to start his round at 9:00, Josh Ahlersmeyer at 9:10, Evan Cultice at 1:50 p.m., Ryan Cultice at 2:00 and Essig at 2:20.
“This is a great opportunity for our players,” said Barkey. “This event has some of the top junior golfers in the country and they get to see where they stack up against them.”
The boys’ field also includes standout Quentyn Carpenter from Triton High School. Carpenter is scheduled to begin his opening round at 9:20 a.m. Tuesday.
Also entered in the event are Michael Makris of South Bend (8:50), Dylan Gessinger of Nappanee (9:10), J.T. Schwartz of Granger (12:30) Connor Isban of South Bend (2:20).
The lone area player entered on the girls’ side is Deanna Song of Granger. The former Penn High School standout, who helped lead her team to a runner-up finish in the State Finals in 2011, won the South Bend Women’s Metro Tournament earlier this month.
The second round of the Stonehenge Open is Wednesday. The field will then be cut in half after that for the final round Thursday.