High School Golf

Phillips and Bridgeman help US win

The US team won the first ever Junior Presidents Cup. The team included two players from Inman, Trent Phillips and Jacob Bridgeman. (AJGA Photo)

The first ever Junior Presidents Cup belongs to the United States and two South Carolina golfers made important contributions to the victory.

Inman’s Trent Phillips and Jacob Bridgeman were part of the team that defeated the International team 14-10.

Phillips from Boiling Springs High School teamed up with Bridgeman from Chapman High School to earn a point in the first round as the two won their opening match 2 up.

In the afternoon of the first day the two golfers drew new partners for the alternate shot competition, but the result was the same. Both golfers helped their teams to earn another point with a pair of wins.

Phillips was teamed up with Noah Goodwin from Texas ini the afternoon. Phillips drained the final putt of the match to give the two a convincing 4&3 victory over Garrick Higgo of South Africa and Rayhan Thomas of India.

Bridgeman and Akshay Bhatia of Wake Forest, NC needed all 18 holes before they were able to secure another point for the USA.

The two Carolina golfers were the last match on the course and both teams had gathered around the final green to see who would win.

Jacob Bridgeman makes the final putt on the 18th hole to win his match and give the US team a commanding 9-3 lead. (Photo from AJGA)

Bridgeman hit a pitch shot to within 12 feet. Bhatia pushed his putt five feet past the hole and Bridgeman sank the par putt to give the US team another point and a 9-3 lead after the first 36 holes.

The second day featured singles matches for each of the players. Phillips drew Jayden Schaper of South Africa. Schaper was the top 19 year old and under player in his home country.

The two battled just about even to the final holes. Phillips birdied the par 4 17th hole to take a 1 up lead. He made it stand up with a par on the final hole while Schaper bogeyed the hole.

Bridgeman got off to a difficult start in his match against Luca Filippi of South Africa. The future Clemson golfer bogeyed the first two holes and never was able to get the match back to even.

Jacob Bridgeman and Trent Phillips made history by being part of the first Presidents Cup winning team. (Photo from Kevin Britt)

Like his teammate Schaper, Filippi was also a highly successful junior from Cape Town. Bridgeman was able to cut the lead to just one hole, but Filippi answered the challenge and claimed a 3 & 2 victory.

Honorary captain Jack Nicklaus was on hand for the final round of the event and presented the medals to each of the US players.

“They’re going to be their stars of the future,” Nicklaus said. “I look at these kids now and I’m sure I’ll see them later on at the Memorial Tournament and other tournaments in the future,” he added.

The team will do some sightseeing in New York on Wednesday and spend some time at Liberty National with the members of the Presidents Cup team.

They will attend the first round of the Presidents Cup on Thursday before returning to their homes.




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