U.S. Junior Ryder Cup team unveiled, features 12 top boys and girls

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — Denny McCarthy of Burtonsville, Md., and Cassy Isagawa of Wailuku, Hawaii will lead the 2010 United States Junior Ryder Cup Team against Europe in the 2010 Junior Ryder Cup, Sept. 27-28, at Gleneagles Resort in Scotland.

McCarthy and Isagawa earned an exemption by claiming the boys’ and girls’ division titles in the 35th Junior PGA Championship presented by Under Armour at Sycamore Hills Golf Club in Fort Wayne, Ind.

Isagawa came to the Junior PGA Championship looking for a spot on the U.S. Junior Ryder Cup team, and was surprised by her play all week.

“It was a dream for me to make this team,” said Isagawa. “I can’t wait to go to Scotland and compete against the best junior players from Europe. We all want to win.”

Anthony Paolucci of Del Mar, Calif., and Ginger Howard of Bradenton, Fla., the runner-up in the boys’ and girls’ divisions, also earned an automatic spot.

“I am really excited to be competing on my second Junior Ryder Cup team,” said Paolucci. “Our team played really well in 2008 and now we are the away team and have to figure out how to win.”

Joining the Junior PGA Championship qualifiers are Jim Liu of Smithtown, N.Y., and Doris Chen of Bradenton, Fla., champions of the U.S. Junior Amateur and U.S. Girls Championship, respectively. Both received an automatic exemption for those victories.

Liu, 14, is the youngest U.S. Junior Amateur champion in the event’s history.

Also receiving an automatic exemption was Alison Lee of Valencia, Calif., who was first on the girls U.S. Junior Ryder Cup points list.

PGA of America Past President M.G. Orender is the 2010 U.S. Junior Ryder Cup Team Captain, announced his five Captain’s picks in both the boys’ and girls’ divisions.

On the boys’ side, Orender picked Jordan Spieth of Dallas, Texas, the 2009 U.S. Junior Amateur Champion and 2009 Junior PGA Championship runner-up, Oliver Schniederjans of Powder Springs, Ga., the 2009 Polo Golf Junior Classic champion who finished in a tie for third in the 2010 Junior PGA Championship, and Justin Thomas of Goshen, Ky., a finalist at the 2010 U.S. Junior Amateur and 2010 PGA Junior Series champion.

On the girls’ side, Emma Talley of Princeton, Ky., who finished in a tie for 11th in the 35th Junior PGA Championship and is a three-time winner on the PGA Junior Series, and Kristen Park of Buena Park, Calif., the 2007 U.S. Girls Amateur Champion and winner of the 2010 Rolex Tournament of Champions, were chosen.

Both Spieth and Thomas have made a cut on the PGA Tour, with Spieth contending at the 2010 HP Byron Nelson Championship and Thomas making the 36 hole cut at the 2009 Wyndham Championship.

“I am extremely excited about this year’s team,” said Orender, who served as President of The PGA of America from 2003-2004. “They are all very talented and this will be one of the best experiences of their lives.”

Orender will make sure his team is ready to compete against an improved European squad, who the U.S. defeated 22 to 2 in 2008.

“The European team is going to come out fighting and wanting to win,” said Orender. “We must come out ready to play and compete at a high level to win this year.”

Participants in the 2010 Junior Ryder Cup will play a “friendship” match the day prior (Thursday) to the start of the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor in Wales. The matches will feature a mixed four-ball, with the U.S.A. competing against Europe for the six matches, which will continue to build international friendships.

2010 U.S. Junior Ryder Cup Team:

Jim Liu – Smithtown, N.Y.
Denny McCarthy – Burtonsville, Md.
Anthony Paolucci – Del Mar, Calif.
Oliver Schniederjans – Powder Springs, Ga.
Jordan Spieth – Dallas, Texas
Justin Thomas – Goshen, Ky.

Doris Chen – Bradenton, Fla.
Ginger Howard – Bradenton, Fla.
Cassy Isagawa – Wailuku, Hawaii
Alison Lee – Valencia, Calif.
Kristen Park – Buena Park, Calif.
Emma Talley – Princeton, Ky.

About The PGA of America
Since 1916, The PGA of America’s mission has been twofold: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf.

By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, the Association enables PGA Professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion golf industry.

By creating and delivering dramatic world-class championships and exciting and enjoyable golf promotions that are viewed as the best of their class in the golf industry, The PGA of America elevates the public’s interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere.

Randy Stutzman
PGA of America

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