Golf Plus | IMG Academy's Liu, Boonchant advance at U.S. Girls Junior Championship


Two IMG Academy golfers stormed to the top of the leaderboard during stroke play qualifying at the 2015 U.S. Girls' Junior Championship on Monday and Tuesday at Tulsa Country Club in Tulsa, Okla.

Mika Liu and Jaravee Boonchant wrapped up the 36 holes of stroke play with top seeds for the match-play portion that started Wednesday.

Boonchant fired a 4-under-par 136 over two rounds, while Liu finished in a tie for seventh place after a 2-under 138. The medalist was Rockland, Mass., native Megan Khang, who posted an 8-under-par total.

In the Round of 64 matches Wednesday, Liu dispatched China's Mimi Chen, 5-and-3. Boonchant took down Fullerton, Calif., resident Beth Lillie, 3-and-2, to advance to Thursday's Round of 32.

Fresh off taking second place in the Florida Open, Bradenton's Philip Knowles is continuing his summer tournament slate with this week's Oglethorpe Invitational before departing for the University of North Florida at the end of August.

Knowles is slated to tee off the first hole at 9:54 a.m. in Thursday's first round. The tournament is held at the Wilmington Island Club in Savannah, Ga.

He also is scheduled to participate in the Florida Junior Cup, defend his title in the Florida State Amateur Match Play and make a second consecutive appearance at the U.S. Amateur prior to beginning his UNF career.

Tampa's Doug Letson earned a sudden-death playoff victory on the West Florida Golf Tour on Wednesday at Palm-Aire Country Club.

Following a final-round 69, Letson secured the win with a par on the third playoff hole over Tampa's David Branshaw.

Colorado native A.J. Morris, who led after Monday's first round and Tuesday's second round, missed out on the playoff by one shot following Wednesday's 2-over-par 74. Letson collected more than $3,200 for the victory.

IMG Academy alum Cheng-Tsung Pan hasn't been a professional for long, but he already is making waves on the PGA Tour Canada.

Pan claimed his maiden pro victory at The Players Cup on July 12 in Winnipeg in just his fourth pro start. He tallied a 15-under-par 269 for the 72-hole tournament, which was two shots better than former Ryder Cupper, European and PGA Tour regular Robert Karlsson.

Pan earned $31,500 (Canadian) for the victory and is in fifth place on the Order of Merit. The top five players following the Freedom 55 Financial Championship in late September earn Tour status for next season.

Pan holds a slight edge over American Michael Letzig for that top-five position, despite only playing in three events so far.

There are six tournaments left on the Canadian Tour slate, which means Lakewood Ranch High and Florida State University alum Seath Lauer is running out of time to find his form. In six events this season, he has made three cuts and only collected close to $1,600 in earnings. That ranks Lauer 114th on the money list.

-- Jason Dill, Herald staff writer