Teens from across the country had the opportunity to learn from the game’s legends during the PURE Insurance Championship at Pebble Beach Impacting The First Tee, an official PGA TOUR Champions event, which concluded today. Sam Sommerhauser from First Tee of Greater Sacramento, paired with Kirk Triplett, and Ashley Menne from First Tee of Phoenix, paired with Tom Lehman, claimed the male and female Pro-Junior titles today, respectively. Sommerhauser and Triplett finished 23-under, while Menne and Lehman capped off the event with a score of 18-under.
First Tee is a national youth development program that helps young people build character using the game of golf as a platform. The event, in its 16th year, brings 78 teens from First Tee chapters nationwide to Pebble Beach Golf Links and Poppy Hills Golf Course. Throughout the week, the teens apply the life and leadership skills learned from First Tee programs during an event where they are paired with a PGA TOUR Champions player and amateurs from the business world. The annual event, hosted by the Monterey Peninsula Foundation, was televised internationally on Golf Channel.
“We are proud of all the teens who played with confidence and composure this week at the PURE Insurance Championship,” said Greg McLaughlin, president of First Tee. “These young people exemplify the character and values we instill through the First Tee programs every day. A special congratulations to Sam Sommerhauser and Ashley Menne for winning the Pro-Junior titles. Thank you to our partners – PURE Insurance, PGA TOUR Champions, Monterey Peninsula Foundation and Golf Channel – for making this a special week for 78 First Tee participants.”
Sommerhauser is a 17-year-old senior at Whitney High School in Rocklin, Calif. where he has a 3.88 GPA and plays on the boys’ golf team. He has been involved with First Tee of Greater Sacramento for eight years and volunteers as an assistant coach. He credits the program for life skills and values that he will carry into college and adulthood. Sommerhauser holds a 1.9 handicap and is committed to play golf at the University of Arizona next fall.
“It was a special week playing Pebble Beach and learning from the PGA TOUR Champions professionals,” said Sommerhauser. “Playing so well with Mr. Triplett and watching his determination and composure first-hand has been an experience I’ll never forget.”
Menne is a 17-year-old senior at Xavier College Preparatory in Phoenix, Ariz. where she has a 4.0 GPA and plays on the girls’ golf team. She’s been involved with First Tee of Phoenix for five years and is pursuing her Ace Certification, the highest level in the First Tee program that focuses on goal setting, career exploration and giving back to the community. Menne holds a 1.2 handicap and has committed to play on the women’s golf team at Arizona State University next fall.
“The life skills I’ve learned through the First Tee helped me persevere this week to keep playing one shot at a time,” said Menne. “I’m so thankful for the outcome and for a great experience playing with Tom Lehman.”
Kirk Triplett won the pro title, defeating Billy Andrade on the first playoff hole to secure his second victory of the season. Triplett became the second player in the history of the PURE Insurance Championship to own three titles at the event (2019, 2013 and 2012). This win moves him to No. 4 in the Charles Schwab Cup rankings.
First Tee is a youth development organization dedicated to helping young people build character through the game of golf. The PURE Insurance Championship is one of 10 national opportunities that encourage and empower youth as they progress through the program and toward higher education opportunities. The 78 teens were selected by a national panel of judges based on their understanding and application of the values and life skills learned through First Tee’s programs, as well as their playing ability.
To access photos from the event, visit bit.ly/2kykR1E. For more information on the tournament, visit PUREInsuranceChampionship.com. To learn more about First Tee and see the full field list, visit TheFirstTee.org.