PKBGT – Accomplishing the Mission – 8 years of the PKBGT and what it means for you
As 2015 begins, we are excited for our 9th season of the PKB Girls’ Golf Tour. During January, I am providing a tour primer, outlining what’s new on the tour, answer some frequently asked questions and alert you to some items to be sure not to miss. This week, I will focus on the growth of the PKBGT and what it means for you. Through growing participation across the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest the tour continues to grow and remains the largest “girls’ only” tour in the country. In addition, new sponsorship partnerships, the Let’s Play Campaign and support from the LPGA further assist the PKBGT in fulfilling our mission of increased competitive opportunities for female golfers and creating a pathway to college golf. If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me at 336-347-8537 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
1/4 – What’s new for 2015? – Collegiate Series, Let’s Play Campaign and more
1/11 – PKBGT Series & Choosing which is right for me?
1/18 – Accomplishing the Mission – Why the PKBGT is right place for your daughter
1/25 – Rankings & National Exposure on the PKBGT – Get seen, achieving your goals
>> INCREASED COMPETITION & EXPOSURE
2014 saw the tour membership grow to 440 girls, an 18% increase from 2013, including large growth in the Mid-Atlantic & Midwest. During the 2014 season, membership was evenly distributed between the Bell & Futures divisions. For 2015, with the inclusion of a more robust third competitive option, the Prep Series, we project our growth to continue, providing even stronger and diverse fields. With the addition of the Prep & Futures One-Day Series in the 2015 tour, we will have numerous opportunities for players of all stages of the development process to compete and be recognized.
With the influx of new players from new regions, the strength and size of tournament fields were the benefit, as noted by the elevated national ranking recognition of tour events by Golfweek and the AJGA Performance Based Entry System. For example, for all multi-events, all champions in the Bell, Prep & Futures Series will receive Performance Stars with additional recognition for the 10% of finishers in the Bell & Prep Series. In the Bell & Prep Series, PKBGT Championship winners will receive 8 stars, 2nd & 3rd finishers will receive 4 stars while in traditional 2-day Classic events the event champion will receive 4 stars. Next week’s article will focus more in depth on rankings, their importance, and how PKBGT utilizes them.
>> GET SEEN – COACHES ON SITE AT PKBGT EVENTS
RecruitPKB College Consultant Brandi Jackson keeps in regular communication with collegiate coaches to learn what they are looking for and inviting them to attend and recruit at PKBGT events. Our college database of engaged coaches has grown to over 250 schools, including 133 schools who have successfully recruited a PKBGT member. PKBGT Championships and Classic events are prime opportunities to see numerous coaches following the action on-site while many are in regular contact with PKBGT offices for players contact information and available players for recruitment. PKBGT maintains a current list of uncommitted players for upcoming graduation years which are distributed to coaches on request. Learn more about programs recruiting PKB at http://recruit.pkbgt.org/collegeresearchcenter.php.
>> PLAY COLLEGE GOLF – RecruitPKB MEMBER SIGNINGS
The early signing period this past November was the biggest yet for the PKBGT with 58 members from the Class of 2015 signing national letters of intent to play collegiate golf this fall. In the 8 year history of the tour, 333 members have fulfilled this dream! Also exciting is another 14 members from the Classes of 2016 & 2017 have already made verbal commitments to play collegiate golf in the future. A key mission of the PKBGT since its founding, these statistics re-energize our efforts as our players reach their goals. With the RecruitPKB initiative led by College Consultant Brandi Jackson, we are poised to continue this trend and provide the events and resources to help PKBGT families navigate and be seen during the college recruiting process. Learn more at http://recruit.pkbgt.org/.
>> EXCEL BEYOUND JUNIOR GOLF – ALUMNI EXCELLING IN THE COLLEGIATE RANKS & BEYOND
It is exciting for us to see the girls continue to have success when they reach the collegiate ranks and beyond. Most exciting is to see two past PKBGT members earning professional status for 2015 on the LPGA Symetra Tour. 2008 & 2009 PKBGT Order of Merit season champion and UNC Chapel Hill graduate Katherine Perry (Cary, NC) earned full-time status through LPGA Qualifying School while Laura Wearn (Charlotte, NC) returns for a second season.
In addition, PKBGT alumni are making waves on the amateur golf circuit. Recent UNC Wilmington graduate Lori Beth Adams (Burlington, NC) earned Top-5 finishes at both the Harder Hall Women’s Invitational and the Women’s South Atlantic Amateur Championship “the Sally”, two of the most prestigious women’s amateur events in the country. Current Wake Forest golfer Allison Emery (Charlotte, NC) also placed in the Top 5 at the Harder Hall.
At the collegiate ranks, 11 PKBGT Alumni are currently ranked in the Top 100 in the Shotstat Collegiate Rankings. At the Division 1 level, Emery is currently ranked 28th, Kayla Jones (Alpharetta, GA, Florida State University) at 62nd, Lucia Polo (Greensboro, NC, Tennessee University) at 89th, and Eunice Yi (Evans, GA, Augusta State University) at 99th. At the Division 2 level, Ashlii Thompson (Brown Summit, NC, UNC Pembroke) is 42nd, Maddisen Cox (Easley, SC, Converse College) is 46th, Rachel Moore (Lexington, SC, Erskine College) is 51st, Madison Kennedy (Salisbury, NC, Catawba College) is 63rd, Laura Bird (Maxton, NC, UNC Pembroke) is 74th, Ali Green (West Chester, OH, Ashland University) is 87th, Paige Lyle (Orlando, FL, Rollins College) is 91st. In addition, Mary Frances Hall (St. Road, NC, Washington & Lee University) is currently ranked 8th in Division 3 national rankings.
About the Author:
Mike Parker is a Co-Founder and Tour Director of the PKBGT. Mike has been directing junior golf tournaments for the last 11 years including local, regional and national events. To contact Mike, please call 336-347-8537 or email email@example.com.