Palo Alto's Michelle Xie, representing The First Tee of Silicon Valley and Champions Tour professional Kirk Triplett, clinched the Pro-Junior title Sunday at the Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach while finishing at 18-under. Triplett also successfully defended his title in the event.
"It's kind of crazy," Xie said after finishing the 18th hole. "It's overwhelming and I really can't even put this week into words. Kirk was an incredible partner and really kept me afloat the last round especially. The entire experience was awesome."
Xie and Triplett shot 65 in the best-ball format on Friday at Del Monte Golf Course. They followed that with a 65 on Saturday at Pebble Beach to earn a berth in Sunday's final round, where they won by two strokes.
Xie is a junior at Palo Alto High where she plays on the girls' golf team. She joined The First Tee of Silicon Valley in 2009. She has completed four of the five levels of The First Tee program, and is an active participant and volunteer.
Xie placed fourth at the 2013 JGANC Junior Golf Association of Northern California Junior World Qualifier shooting a 76. She won the 2012 AJGA Nebraska Junior Qualifier at Quarry Oaks with a 72, and she holds the women's course record (69) at Palo Alto Hills Golf & Country Club.
Xie is also a member of the Science Olympiad team and serves on the Palo Alto Youth Council, a youth-run city council that promotes the voice of youth in the Palo Alto community.
The Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach is a unique Champions Tour event that pairs 81 junior golfers with 81 professionals. The tournament took place this weekend at Pebble Beach Golf Links and Del Monte Golf Course. Xie was one of 23 junior golfers who made the cut to play the third and final round.
"Xie, along with all her fellow juniors, played with great confidence this week, representing The First Tee and their chapters very well," said Joe Louis Barrow, Jr., chief executive of The First Tee. "We are grateful to Nature Valley, Monterey Peninsula Foundation and Champions Tour for their commitment to this tournament, which continues to showcase The First Tee's character building programs and how they positively impact young people on and off the course."
The First Tee of Silicon Valley is one of 187 chapters. Serving the Silicon Valley area, from Palo Alto to Gilroy, since 1997, more than 20,000 young people have been served through chapter programs and The First Tee National School Program, which is in 22 Silicon Valley elementary schools.