Family-Focused Golf in the Heart of Italy
The locals were welcoming, the smiles were bountiful and the quality of golf sensational at the first annual U.S. Kids Golf Venice Open. The final round action did not disappoint– we had a three sudden-death playoffs and champions from seven different countries. A special thank you to our hosts in Padova and to the families that traveled from across the world. You made this an unforgettable event and set the precedent for an exciting new tradition for U.S. Kids Golf.
Boys 7 & Under | Galzignano Terme Spa & Golf Resort
1 Charles David Beeson (Atlanta, GA): E
2 Jake Valentine (Stoke Poges, United Kingdom): +1
T3 Alex Utterson (Johannesburg, South Africa): +3
T3 Filip Grave (Bunkeflostrand, Sweden): +3
5 Francesco Maria Franza (Trieste, Italy): +6
After day one, four boys from the 7 & Under age group were tied for the lead at +2. Charles David Beeson emerged victorious on the final day. The youngster from Atlanta, Georgia carded birdies on the 3rd, 5th and 7th hole finishing the day at -2 (34). After falling just short at the British Championship the week prior, Beeson captured his first U.S. Kids Golf Major Championship victory in Padova, Italy.
Boys 8 | Galzignano Terme Spa & Golf Resort
1 Matthew Golovanov (Boca Raton, FL): +1
T2 Miguel Morato Brede (Kassel, Germany): +3
T2 Cillian Roberts (Swindon, United Kingdom): 3
4 Alessandro Cesario (Varese, Italy): +4
5 Maximilian Fischer (Sydney, Australia): +5
Matthew Golovanov (pictured above) occupied fourth place in the Boys 8 age group after shooting a +4 (40) in the first round. He was three strokes back heading into the final round, but this USKG veteran was tenacious and determined to change that result. The 2015 European Champion carded a bogey-free -3 (33) in his final round to en route to his second Major Championship victory of the year: the inaugural Venice Open.
Boys 9 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Yoyo Xia (Honolulu, HI): -7
2 Mikhail Efremov (Moscow, Russian Federation): +5
3 Lorenzo Casartelli (Tremezzo, Italy): +6
4 Bence Samuel Somogyi (Budapest, Hungary): +8
T5 Maximilian Fischer (Sydney, Australia): +5
T5 Frankie Wallace (Norwich, United Kingdom): +10
Yoyo Xia, the only competitor in the field from Hawaii, represented his home state in the Pacific extremely well. After jumping out to a three shot lead in round one, he built on his performance in a big way. The 2015 British Open Champion carded a spectacular -6 (66) in the final round, finishing at -7 for the tournament. Twelve shots separated Xia from second place- the largest margin of victory among all age groups.
Boys 10 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Cesar DeMeaux (Paris, France): +2
2 Sam NG (Arcadia, California): +8
3 Stefans Spruzs (Rigas Rajons, Latvia): +11
4 Edoardo John Gallazzi (Alessandria, Italy): +12
5 Maximilian Fischer (Sydney, Australia): +15
Cesar Demeaux, a participant in the last two World Championships and European Championships, set out on the final day in search of his first U.S. Kids Golf victory. After carding an impressive even par (72) in his first round, he followed up with a steady +2 (74) in the final round. Demeaux’s consistent play earned him the title of the first-ever Boys 10 Venice Open Champion.
Boys 11 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Flavio Michetti (Roma, Italy): -5
2 Armand Loscalzo (Tampa, FL): -5
3 Tiger Christensen (Hamburg, Germany): -2
4 Filippo Valzorio (Borgosesia, Italy): E
5 Darren Strachan (Hardelot, France): +3
After the first 18 holes of play, Flavio Michetti of Rome found himself three shots back on Tampa Local Tour Champion, Armand Loscalzo. However, Michetti fired a -3 (69) on the second day, birdying five of the last ten holes to force a playoff. The Italian native went on to win the playoff and celebrate his victory with his fellow countrymen.
Boys 12 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Francisco Matos Coelho (Lisboa, Portugal): +1
2 Alessio Battista (Udine, Italy): +3
3 Pietro Pontiggia (Roma, Italy): +5
T4 Alessandro Castellani (Milano, Italy): +10
T4 Max Popovic (Domzale. Slovenia): +10
T4 Severi Soutolahti (Tampere, Finland): +10
Francisco Matos Coelho was the lone Portuguese Champion in the inaugural Venice Open. Coelho, who also won the inaugural British Kids Championship last week, fired a 73-72 to win the Boys 12 age group by two shots. After bogeying 4,6 and 7, the Portuguese youngster recovered with three birdies in his last ten holes. Alessio Battista made a good effort to recover from his opening round of 78 by carding a -3 (69) the second day, but it wouldn’t be enough to overthrow Coelho.
Boys 13 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Valerio Rossi (Roma, Italy): -1
2 Max Van De Kuilen (Oosterhout, Netherlands): +3
3 Lorenzo Tatti (Prato, Italy): +5
4 Filippo Lazzini (Carrara, Italy): +6
5 Lorenzo Giudice (Casalserugo, Italy): +7
Valerio Rossi was yet another golfer who played scored significantly lower on the second and final day of the event. Rossi, who traveled to the World Championship in 2011, reminded everyone that he has game by carding a -4 (68) in his final round. Like Michetti (Boys 11), Rossi fired an impressive final round score, propelling him into first place and allowing him to return to his home city of Rome, a Champion.
Boys 14 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Tommaso Orsi (Monza, Italy): -10
2 Carlo De Luca (Padova, Italy): -2
3 Aldric Bouffard (Ozoir La Feriere, France): +3
4 Alessandro Ghilardi (Mozzo, Italy): +4
T5 Ben Carpenter (Darien, Connecticut): +10
T5 Angus James Klintworth (Kyalami, South Africa): +10
Keep an eye out for Tommaso Orsi in the coming years. This talented young Italian has a very bright future if he continues to play and build upon his already outstanding golf game. After shocking the field with a -7 (65) in the opening round, he posted a modest -3 (69) in the second. The U.S. Kids Golf rookie made a name for himself during the inaugural Venice Open as he won the Boys 14 age group by a commanding eight shots.
Boys 15-18 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Massimiliano Repele (Vicenza, Italy): +5
2 Simone Dalla Pieta (Oderzo, Italy): +6
3 Federico Regaldo (Buttigliera Alta, Italy): +9
4 Jeremy Faure (Saint-Priest Manissieux, Italy): +11
5 Andreas Jonsson (Chiaverano, Italy): +13
The Italians dominated the oldest division among boys. Massimiliano Repele, yet another USKG rookie, edged out fellow Italian, Simone Dalla Pieta, claiming first place in the Boys 15-18 age group. The 16-year-old carded a +1 (73) in the final round to secure his place in U.S. Kids Golf history.
Girls 8 & Under | Galzignano Terme Spa & Golf Resort
1 Paris Appendino (Roma, Italy): E
2 Kaila Elsayegh (Pacific Palisades, California): +3
3 Elise Liu (Richmond, Canada): +5
4 Matilde Santilli (Ancona, Italy): +6
5 Annika Kohoutkova (Prague, Czech Republic): +7
After falling just short in the past two World Championships and European Championships, Paris Appendino finally achieved gold, and did so in her home country. The young USKG veteran carded almost identical rounds during the two-day event. Both days she made two birdies and two bogeys (36-36), becoming the third champion crowned from Rome.
Girls 9 | Galzignano Terme Spa & Golf Resort
1 Lorena Rossettin (Genoa, Italy): +4
2 Helen Briem (Nürtingen, Germany): +4
3 Stephanie Barbaglia (Johannesburg, South Africa): +18
Lorena Rossettin and Helen Briem led the way in the oldest girls age group at Galzignano. It was anyone’s tournament to win or lose in this small age group, and both girls were neck and neck. Each shot 40-36 in their first two rounds which led to a dramatic, sudden-death playoff Saturday evening. Rossetin emerged victorious among the home crowd.
Girls 10 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Victoria Matthews (Great Falls, Virginia): +23
T2 Philippa Gollan (Neustadt, Germany): +23
T2 Marta Silcenko (Moscow, Russian Federation): +23
4 Franziska Hoffman (Frankfurt, Germany): +24
5 Maria Vittoria Coppi (Pama, Italy): +39
Victoria Matthews, Philippa Gollan and Marta Silcenko put on a show for the spectators who attended and the participants that remained. They entered the clubhouse at Golf Club Della Montecchia in a three-way tie after 36 holes. It took a 5-hole, sudden-death playoff to decide the champion– Victoria Matthews– but all three girls are champions in our book for providing us with fantastic golf and family fun under the beautiful Italian sunset (pictured above).
Girls 11 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Lea Ludwig (Walldorf, Germany): +14
2 Ashley Stevenson (Cely, France): +18
3 Madison Starke (Walnut Creek, California): +19
4 Skylar Kew (Ontario, Canada): +20
5 Lucrezia Rossettin (Genoa, Italy): +29
Lea Ludwig‘s consistency won her the title of the Girls 11 Venice Open Champion. She carded back-to-back 79’s to seize the first place trophy. Ludwig, a top-ten finisher in the Holiday Classic, won by four shots.
Girls 12 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Nataliya Guseva (Moscow, Russian Federation): +2
2 Rivekka Dzhumagulova (Sofia, Bulgaria): +8
3 Darlene Maitem (Anthem, Arizona): +20
4 Matilde Innocenti Angelini (Firenze, Italy): +25
5 Alisa Khokhlova (Moscow, Russian Federation): +35
Nataliya Guseva was the only Russian to hoist the first place trophy in the inaugural Venice Open. Guseva shocked the European Championship field in the earlier this summer by coming out of nowhere to win the Girls 12 age group. In the second round of the Venice Open, Guseva carded four birdies on the back nine to win the age group by a commanding six strokes. She is now 2-2 in U.S. Kids Golf tournaments, with two impressive pieces of first place hardware.
Girls 13-14 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Tijana Jovicevic (Slovenia): +13
2 Margaret He (London, United Kingdom): +15
Tijana Jovicevic was one of three Slovenian players in the Venice Open field, and represented her country and compatriots well by lifting the championship trophy. Jovicevic, a champion of the 2011 European Championship fired a 77-80, winning the age group by two shots over Londoner Margaret He.
Girls 15-18 | Golf Club Della Montecchia
1 Ludovica Busetto (Venezia, Italy): +5
2 Alessandra Tenderini (Treviso, Italy): +14
The smallest age group in the tournament was comprised of two Italian girls. These girls were not caught up with competition, but instead welcomed the Venice Open as a family-focused event in their beautiful homeland. After finishing in the top 20 in the Teen World Championship in Pinehurst, Ludovica Busetto carded an impressive 72-77 in Padova. 15-year-old Busetto has a very bright future.
Boys 9: Lorenzo Zambotto
Boys 9: Frankie Wallace
Boys 10: Edoardo Giacomo Vandelli (pictured above)
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