U.S. Junior Amateur Golf Championship
The United States Junior Amateur Championship is one of the thirteen U.S. national golf championships organized by the United States Golf Association. It is open to amateur boys who are under 19 on the last day of the competition and have a USGA Handicap Index of 4.4 or less. The competition was established in 1948. It consists of two days of stroke play, with the leading 64 competitors then playing a match play competition to decide the champion.
The first tournament in 1948 was won by Dean Lind from a field of 495 entries. In 1999, the tournament set a record with 4,508 entries. Only two players have won the championship multiple times: Tiger Woods won the tournament for three consecutive years beginning in 1991; Jordan Spieth won in 2009 and 2011. In 2010, Jim Liu, at 14 years, 11 months, became the youngest champion ever, breaking Woods' mark of 15 years and 220 days.
The number of winners who have gone on to become leading professionals is quite modest. This reflects not only the young age of the competitors, but the more random results of match play tournaments compared to stroke play events. Apart from Woods, well known winners include Johnny Miller (1964), David Duval (1989), Hunter Mahan (1999) and Jordan Spieth (2009 and 2011). Jack Nicklaus's best result was a semifinal loss.
The equivalent competition for girls is the U.S. Girls' Junior Championship.
- "Live Championship Match Blog". Junior Amateur Blog. USGA. 23 July 2011. Retrieved 23 July 2011.
- Lavner, Ryan (24 July 2010). "Liu, 14, becomes youngest U.S. Junior champ". Golfweek.com. Turnstile Publishing Company. Retrieved 23 July 2011.
- Shin was born in South Korea and moved to California with his family in October 2000. His citizenship at the time of winning the Championship is unknown. The USGA lists him as "of Fullerton, California".