The TPC Twin Cities All Stars won their final round match against the Twin Cities East Metro Hwy 36 All Star Team to win the PGA Jr. League Minnesota Section Championship at StoneRidge Golf Club on Tuesday, August 20.
The TPC Twin Cities All Star Team made it all the way to the Championship Finals last year at Greyhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona, where they finished 2nd behind Team California.
Tony Serpico, Captain of the TPC Twin Cities All Star team, returned to coach the team for his second year after the sudden passing of former Captain and PGA Member Jay Norman this winter.
“They all seem to want to come together and play for him,” said Serpico. “It was very hard at first, that’s for sure. We have six returning kids from last year, and then two of the other four are younger brothers of kids that were on the team, so they were around the team the entire time, travelling with us. Jay gave them lessons. Everyone loved Jay.”
Even though Serpico added 8 kids to the TPC Twin Cities in-house league this year for a total of 49 participants, things ran smoothly because of Jay.
“I kind of just took over an engine that was running,” he said.
Jay’s wife Jennifer rode along with Serpico throughout the tournament and gathered with the kids afterward to reminisce and honor Jay’s memory as a team. It was that team spirit echoed by each of the players that carried TPC to victory.
“I like playing as a team,” said 10-year-old Chase Birdwell of the TPC Twin Cities All Star team, who made his first Hole in One at the Championship. Birdwell thought he’d missed the green on hole #6 during the Championship round, and instead holed out on the 230 yard par-4 for his first ever hole-in-one.
TPC Twin Cities is on the road to the 2019 PGA Jr. League Finals in Scottsdale, Arizona, hoping to win for Jay. Their next stop is the PGA Jr. League Regional Finals at Glen Oaks Country Club in Des Moines, Iowa.
Birdwell, who credits consistent play, is hopeful that the team makes it to Scottsdale, because “you get unlimited milkshakes. And you get to play golf.”
“I feel pretty good,” said Sam Udovich of the TPC Twin Cities when asked about how he think the team will do at the Regional Finals. Udovich is back for his second year on the TPC Twin Cities All-Star Team. “I feel like we’re going to advance because we have a really strong team.”
Udovich was confident in the mix of returning and new players. To him, the key to success in one word: “Teamwork,” said Udovich.
“Other junior programs, you’re by yourself,” said Serpico. “That’s how golf 90 percent of the time is, playing on your own, which is nice, because then you rely on your own abilities. But being on a team and around a team, that’s what youth sports are about. Build friendships, life long, just being able to have fun and support each other.”
The TPC Twin Cities All Star team won the 2-person scramble format final round over Twin Cities East Metro Highway-36. Bismarck/Mandan beat the Fargo Lions for the third place spot. Each of the four teams finished in first or second place at either of the two Section Qualifiers to advance to the Section Championship.