Top junior girls of 2012: No. 5 Nicole Morales
From Ariya Jutanugarn's dominating performance at the Concession Golf Club to her older sister Moriya making her way through LPGA Q-School, 2012 was a year to remember for girls junior golf.
Over the course of 10 days, we will bring you the top 10 players of the year starting at No. 10 and ending with the player who we think had the most impressive season.
Who's No. 5? None other than New York native Nicole Morales.
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5. Nicole Morales (South Salem, N.Y.)
The resume: Morales, who finished No. 8 in the Golfweek girls junior rankings, had four AJGA top-10 finishes, including a win at the Genesis Junior Open and a runner-up finish at the TaylorMade-adidias Golf Junior at Innisbrook hosted by Sean O’Hair. Morales finished as a semifinalist at the Polo Junior Golf Classic and made the round of 32 at the U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship. The first team Rolex Junior All-America represented the East Team at the AJGA Wyndham Cup.
Commentary: The feisty New Yorker had her biggest summer of her junior career, which probably carried over from her 2011 Polo Junior Golf Classic win. Her biggest moment of the summer was at the U.S. Girls’ Junior, and her match against No. 1-ranked amateur Lydia Ko. She was 1 up early, but was down for the rest of the match, but she didn’t give up and took Ko to the 17th hole. It was a good run for her. Morales, an Alabama-commit, will have plenty of time to tune her game for college as she has another full year of junior play.