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USA team named for Copa de las Americas
20 Mar 2007
see also: Copa de las Americas, Olivos Golf Club

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Far Hills, N.J. (3-20-07) – Four top collegiate golfers have been selected for the men’s and women’s USA squads that will compete at the 2007 Copa de las Americas Championship from June 20-23 at Beacon Hall Golf Club in Aurora, Ontario, Canada, the United States Golf Association has announced.

Jonathan Moore, a 21-year-old sophomore at Oklahoma State University, and Webb Simpson, a 21-year-old junior at Wake Forest University, will be teammates for the men’s competition. Stacy Lewis, a 22-year-old junior at the University of Arkansas, and Jennie Lee, a 20-year-old sophomore at Duke University will make up the women’s squad.

This will be the third Copa de las Americas championship. Canada won each of the two previous men’s championships, in 2003 and 2005. The USA finished second in 2003 and fifth in 2005. Canada also won the 2003 women’s title. Colombia finished first in 2005. The USA women’s teams were second and fifth, respectively. Canada was the overall champion (combined men’s and women’s scoring) in both 2003 and 2005.

Moore, of Vancouver, Wash., had a school record-tying low round of 62 on his way to winning the Hawaii Hilo Invitational last month. He won the 2006 NCAA Division I individual championship and shortly thereafter qualified for the 2006 U.S. Open at Winged Foot Golf Club.

A first-team All-America and the NCAA Freshman of the Year, Moore also led Oklahoma State to the 2006 NCAA team championship. He has played in three U.S. Amateurs and last August he was named to the three-man World Amateur Team that represented the USA in South Africa in October.

Simpson, from Raleigh, N.C., also was named to the 2006 USA World Amateur Team but was sidelined by injury. He lost in the semifinal round of the 2006 U.S. Amateur to eventual champion Richie Ramsay of Scotland.

Earlier in 2006, he won the Sunnehanna Amateur and was runner-up at the Northeast Amateur and Dogwood Amateur. He earned collegiate All-America honors and Atlantic Coast Conference honors as well. He was Freshman of the Year in the Conference in 2004.

The alternates for the men’s squad, in ranked order, are Trip Kuehne of Irving, Texas, and Chris Kirk of Woodstock, Ga.

Lee, of Henderson, Nev., was a member of the winning USA Curtis Cup team and a member of the USA World Amateur team. Earlier in the summer of 2006, she qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open and reached the quarterfinals of the U.S. Women’s Amateur.

Outside of USGA competition, she finished second at the 2006 NCAA Championship and earned medalist honors at the 2006 North and South Women’s Amateur.

Lewis, of The Woodlands, Texas, already has earned All-America status twice. She used an Arkansas-school-record 66 to finish ninth at the 2006 NCAA Championship. She also has three college tournament wins.

In the summer of 2006, she won the Harder Hall Women’s Amateur, was runner-up at the Women’s Southern Amateur and reached the semifinals at the U.S. Women’s Amateur and the North and South Women’s Amateur.

The alternates for the women’s team in rank order at Taylor Leon of Dallas, Texas, and Tiffany Joh of San Diego, Calif.

Loren Singletary of Houston, Texas, a member of the USGA Executive Committee and a member of the International Team Selection committee, will serve as the teams’ team captain (men and women). He was also captain of the 2005 USA teams.

This Americas championship is scheduled every other year. The inaugural event was held in Puerto Rico in 2003. Two years later, Mexico served as the host country.

Argentina, the Bahamas, Barbados, Canada, the Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States of America, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Uruguay have participated in one or both of the previous competitions.

The event format is 72 holes of stroke play over the 7,001-yard, par-72 Beacon Hall layout. Each player’s scores will count daily. In addition to men’s and women’s titles, the combined (men’s and women’s) low score will be crowned the Copa de las Americas champion.

For more information, visit the Royal Canadian Golf Association Web site at www.rcga.org/copa2007/en/history.asp.

The USGA writes the Rules of Golf, conducts equipment testing, maintains an official Handicap System and administers an ongoing "For the Good of the Game" grants program, which has allocated more than $53 million over 10 years to programs that seek to grow the game. For more information about the USGA, visit www.usga.org.

The USGA's most visible role is played out each season in conducting 13 national championships, including the U.S. Open, U.S. Women's Open and U.S. Senior Open.

Ten additional USGA national championships are exclusively for amateurs, and include the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Women's Amateur.

The USGA is the national governing body of golf in this country and Mexico, a combined territory that includes more than half the game’s golfers and golf courses.

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