After nearly three months without any competition, Langley High School golfer Kelly Chinn will be very busy playing tournaments for the next few months.
The highly-accomplished high school junior player, a rising Langley senior, finished sixth with a four-round, 3-under total of 277 at the American Junior Golf Association’s Invitational at Sedgefield in Greensboro, N.C., played June 9-12. The winning score was 8-under.
The tourney was Chinn’s first since early March when Chinn placed sixth with a 5-under total of 211 at the 54-hole Sage Valley Junior Invitational in Graniteville, S.C.
After that, all other junior action was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Chinn, an individual high-school state champion, was able to stay sharp and practice at Army Navy Country Club.
“It felt good to go out and compete and play for real,” said Chinn, who had two tournaments canceled because of the pandemic.
At Sedgefield, Chinn was in second place after the first round thanks to shooting a 3-under 67. He fell back with a second-round 73, then finished with a 69 and 68 over the final two rounds.
“Other than the second round, I hit the ball well,” Chinn said. “I fell too far back after that second round to come back and win. I was missing fairways and didn’t make any putts in the second round. It was a combo of everything.”
Chinn’s final round included six birdies.
“Overall, my other three rounds were pretty similar, but my last round was my best,” he said.
Entering the tournament, Chinn’s national ranking was among the top 12 junior golfers in the country.
As a result, he is receiving invitations to play in top amateur events nationwide. Chinn is scheduled to play in the North and South Men’s Amateur in Pinehurst, N.C., starting June 27, then the Southern Amateur in Dallas, July 15-18.
Chinn will play in the Virginia State Golf Association’s Junior Stroke Play Championship at the end of July.
In addition, Chinn currently is on top of the qualification standings to earn a spot to play for the six-player U.S. Junior Ryder Cup team, which will be announced in late August. Competition against the European team is slted for September in Wisconsin.
“It would be an honor to make that team,” Chinn said. “I have a lot of tournaments coming up to look forward to.”
Last summer, Chinn reached the final four of the U.S. Junior Amateur match-play event and had a 4-1 record. He tied for 51st at the boys Junior PGA Championship with a 1-under total. Each tournament has been canceled for 2020.
For Langley, Chinn has won multiple tournaments and has helped the Saxons win three state championships in his three seasons. Last fall, he finished fourth in the state and second in region and district tournaments.
Marshall High School’s David Stanford, a rising senior, also played at the invitational at Sedgefield, shooting 74-72-76-–222, missing the cut for the fourth round.
Last fall for Marshall, Stanford won district and region tournaments.