KEWADIN – A-Ga-Ming Golf Resort’s celebrated Sundance course will host the top junior boy golfers in the 44th Michigan Junior State Amateur presented by the Rocket Tour starting Monday.
A field of 108 golfers ages 18-and-under and determined by past performance or via sectional qualifiers will compete for the overall championship or in an age 15-and-under division through Thursday.
Sundance, which opened in 2005, is a Jerry Matthews design on glacier-carved bluffs between Torch Lake and Grand Traverse Bay. Part of the course rolls over links style ground and part of the course is cut through Northern Michigan hardwoods and is next to the resort’s original Torch course.
With water views combined with wide, playable fairways, classic green design, 110 bunkers and natural sand areas as well as heather-clad mounding the course is stunning in appearance. It can be played at almost 7,000 yards and offers multiple tee options. No. 17 is a camera hole in addition to being a challenge to the golfer. The tee is on top of a wooded ridge and the 210-yard par 3 hole then drops 80 to a green surrounded by trees.
A-Ga-Ming was built in the mid-1970s by Detroit businessman Roy Wetmore. What is now the Torch course was redesigned by Chick Harbert, the 1954 PGA champion and Michigan Golf Hall of Fame member. The Antrim Dells course and Charlevoix Country Club courses located nearby are also part of the current resort, which include multiple restaurant and lodging options. Learn more at a-ga-ming.com.
Larry Lavely is the PGA director of golf, and the superintendent for the Sundance course is Nick Michalek.
Those juniors playing in the overall division will play 36 holes of stroke play Monday to determine a medalist and top seed to lead the low scoring 32 golfers into the match play bracket.
A 15-and-under division is also being presented starting Tuesday with 18 holes of stroke play.
In the overall division, first-round or round of 32 matches are Tuesday with second round and quarterfinals on Wednesday. Semifinal and championship match rounds for both age divisions are on Thursday.
The championship will crown a new overall champion. PJ Maybank III of Cheboygan, the winner of consecutive championships, is not in the field this year. Last year he turned back Justin Sui of Lake Orion, 3 and 2, in the final match at TPC Michigan.
The 15-and-under winner a year ago, Max VanderMolen of Richland, is returning. Then 13, he topped Connor Fox of Lake Orion 6 and 5 in the title match.
Sui, VanderMolen and Fox are all returning to the field, and are part of the overall division this year, as is Robert Burns of Grand Blanc, the 15-and-under winner in 2020.