The Southeast Raleigh All-Star golf team won the inaugural PGA Junior League State Championship and is headed to the PGA Junior Regional Championship in St. Augustine, Fla., later this month.
The team will face all-star teams from Georgia, Florida and South Carolina in a two-day event (Aug. 17-18) with the winner moving into the National Championship in September.
Southeast Raleigh earned its regional berth with a 7 ½ to 4 ½ win over the Charlotte All-Stars on July 29 at Stoney Creek Golf Club.
Peter Jackson and Colby Jackson led the team from River Ridge Golf Club, who captured 3 points, and Brady Hooks and Will Hawley, also from River Ridge Golf Club, who captured 2 ½ points. Other team members are Janie Gooch (River Ridge Golf Club), Rachel Johnson (Wilmar Golf Club), Coltin Scott (Pine Hollow Golf Club), Jacob Kallam (Pine Hollow Golf Club), Matt Hayes (Pine Hollow Golf Club), and Junye Ou (Pine Hollow Golf Club).
Each All-Star team selects the best junior players from golf clubs in their respective areas as a result of points earned during the regular season competition.
The PGA Junior League is in its third year of existence and uses a Little League style format. The juniors play by scramble (superball) rules as opposed to stroke play.
The League designed this format to better socialize the game of golf for boys and girls, ages 9-13. League competitions are structured in a two-player match team format, similar to the Ryder Cup. Teams have 10-12 players, each with numbered jerseys, and are formed based on geographical location.
Tim Cockrell and Johnny Scott coach the Southeast Raleigh team.
In 2012, PGA Jr. League Golf had 2,000 participants on over 120 teams in more than 20 markets. In 2013, PGA Jr. League Golf had more than 7,000 players on 700 teams and 150 leagues nationwide, a five-fold increase from the previous year.