Seeman & Knapek Claim Lake Arrowhead Titles
Bennett Knapek has had exactly one bite at the apple known as the Lake Arrowhead Invitational – one of the most prestigious junior tournaments on the Wisconsin golf calendar. Knapek, who lives in Hartland and is off to college in the fall, played the event for the first – and last – time this week and came away as medalist among boys thanks to a stellar final round. Meantime, first-round leader Maria Seeman of Milton barely held on to her lead over the final 18 and emerged as girls champion.
Knapek, 18, made seven birdies and two bogeys in the final round Monday morning on the Pines Course at Lake Arrowhead in Nekoosa, tying him for low-round-of-the-day honors. Combined with his opening score of 74 Sunday afternoon, Knapek finished at 3-under-par 141 to win the boys title by three strokes.
Monday’s other 67 was authored by Tyler Leach of Spring Valley, whose card looked eerily similar to Knapek’s – seven birdies with a lone double bogey. Leach (77-67) eventually finished tied for second place with Hunter Eichhorn of Carney, Mich., (73-71) at 144.
Knapek started the final round with three straight birdies, but it was his finish that brought home the trophy. He rolled in a birdie putt on the narrow par-5 16th hole before dropping his tee shot on the par-3 17th onto a greenside bunker and a tricky downhill lie. No worries, however, as he hit a nearly perfect bunker shot to about 18 inches from the hole.
“It was a downhill lie so I tried to land it on the green,” he said. “And it was perfect and spun right down there.” On the par-4 18, Knapek dropped a birdie putt of about 25 feet to end his day in style.“ I think my ball striking was the best,” Knapek said when asked what was the strongest part of his game in the final round. “I hit a lot of shots into the greens that were pretty close. I didn’t make as many putts as I would have liked, but I still had a great round.”
Knapek is on a roll this spring, having recently participated in Hartland Arrowhead’s Division 1 team championship at the WIAA Boys State Golf Championships. He tied for 12th among individuals. Knapek will join the UW-Madison golf team in the fall. Seeman, 17, was beaming at the trophy presentation after shooting twin rounds of 75 to win the girls division, and she admitted she had not previously won a tournament this big.
Seeman held a four-stroke lead over Emily Lauterbach of Hartland after Sunday’s round, but Lauterbach made up most that ground in the final round. When the dust settled, Seeman (75-75–150) won the girls title by a single stroke over Lauterbach (79-72–151) Abby Cavaiani of Wales (83-77) and Jo Baranczyk of Green Bay tied for third at 160. Seeman played the Lake Arrowhead Invitational the two previous years, and her finishes have improved each time after a rough start.
Day 1 at the 30th Lake Arrowhead Invitational
It's the 30th year of Lake Arrowhead hosting our Invitational. The first round at the Lake Arrowhead Invitational finished up on Sunday night on the Lakes Course. Tee times started at 12:30pm but a brief weather delay of about 40 minutes pushed finish times back. The golf course played hard as the winds gusted to 15-20 mph most of the afternoon and the heat intensified as the round went on.
Mia Seeman (Milton) lead the girls division with a 75. Emily Lauterbach (Hartland) is four shots back at 79.
The wind and heat did not seem to effect Joseph Plock (Oconomowoc) as he fired and even par 72. Hunter Eichhorn (Carney, MI) is one shot back at 73 and Bennett Knapek (Hartland) is two shots back at 74.
Round two will start at 7:30am on Monday morning. at the Pines Course. New for 2017, each boy and girl winner will receive an exemption into the National Junior Championship along with a spot on the 2018 Cup Team.
Click Here for Round 1 results
Cup Matches reaches 20 years
The WPGA Junior Foundation is pleased to announce the 2017 Wisconsin Cup Team. This will be the 20th year of the event. This annual event showcases 12 boys and 12 girls from Wisconsin against Team Minnesota in a Ryder Cup team-type event that started back in 1998. Team Wisconsin leads the overall series at 12-6-1. Players are selected off the Player of the Year points list from the previous year.
The 2017 girls team will include Ashley Kulka (Beaver Dam), Maria Seeman (Milton), Taylor McCorkle (Oregon), Alexis Thomas (Middleton), Speedy Kent (Mequon), Lorenza Martinez (Men. Falls), Sarah Busey (Racine), Jo Baranczyk (Green Bay), Erika Priebe (Appleton), Abby Cavaiani (Wales), Maggie Warrner (Lakewood) and Emily Lauterbach (Hartland).
The boys team will include Jed Baranczyk (Green Bay), Tyler Leach (Spring Valley), Hunter Eichhorn (Carney, MI), Brock Hlinak (Kaukauna), Bennett Knapek (Hartland), Matt Tuman (Wausau), Sean Murphy (Middleton), Piercen Hunt (Hartland), Andrew Clement (Pewaukee), Clayton Tribus (Madison), Zak Kulka (Beaver Dam) and Jack Anderson (Brookfield).
The event will take place at Troy Burne golf course in Hudson, WI on June 29-30. Team Wisconsin will look to bring the cup home after at loss to Team Minnesota last year with a total of 20-16.
The Junior Foundation would also like to thank the sales reps that donated tee gifts to each player. Thanks to Ted Robbins and Tom Cranwell for donating Titleist golf balls, gloves and hats. Antigua President Ron McPherson and WI sales representative Cyndi Millspaugh for donating the team shirts each day, and Ron Hurab for donating an RJ Shepherd umbrella and Devant towel to each player. These guys make this event a great experience for all players.
To view past results of the event Click Here.
2017 Junior Membership Now Available
New for 2017!
Parents may register additional siblings, 21 years of age or younger, as junior members online. As long as one sibling is signed up for the Junior Membership at either the $65 or $55 level, any remaining brothers or sisters may sign up for the discounted Sibling Membership.
Click Here for 2017 Printable Junior Membership Application
Tournament Registration goes live on April 10 @ 6pm
|Junior Members click login into your players account and register for events. You can also cancel out of events from your players account. Get familiar with your account before registration goes live.|
New Events & Updates
The Junior Foundation has created a few new events for the 2017 season.
- The Junior Foundation will take over the Pro-Junior event. The Legend at Merrill Hills will host this event on October 1st. Juniors will be able to register with a PGA Professional as a team or register as an individual and be paired with a PGA Professional for this event. This will be a individual stroke play event with age divisions like a junior tour event but also include a team contest. Talk to you local PGA Professional about playing!
- The Junior Foundation is excited to partner up with the Wisconsin Golf Coaches Association to help run the High School Showcase event on July 5th-6th at Whistling Straits, Irish Course. This event will now be a two day 36-hole event.
- The Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic is the new sponsor of the Future Champions Tour. The LPGA is coming to Thornberry Creek on July 3rd-9th, see some of the best female players in the world compete. The Future Tour has expanded to thirteen events this summer.
- The Madison Par 3 tour will be another addition to the event schedule. This tour will have four events in the Madison area for kids ages 12 and under.
- The Junior Tour event at Whistling Straits on June 30th will continue to be a lottery drawing for players to get into this event. Juniors will have 24 hours from when registration starts (April 10th at 6 p.m.) to register. Everyone that registers during this time will be put into a pending status and your credit card will not be charged. The lottery drawing will be random and will take place on April 12th. Once the lottery takes place the selected entries will be charged on credit card you registered with. Second, the tournament will Only be open to boys & girls ages 14-18. This golf course is very difficult and we have had issues with pace of play in the 13 & under division in years past.