That Kid's Got Game: Concord teen en route to LPGA tour

A 16-year-old girl from Concord won the 43rd Girls Junior PGA championship in Kentucky on Thursday. And she set a record for the tournament’s lowest 72-hole score.

The highly skilled, focused and determined teen is grinding daily and her scorecards show it. Yealimi Noh is this week’s talent on This Kid’s Got Game and there was zero question about it. 

Noh started playing golf when she was about 7-years-old and when she reached her sophomore year in high school she began homeschooling. The shift helped her manage school work and golf tournaments, she said. 

At the championship in Lexington, Noh’s score of 24-under 264 at Kearney Hill Golf Links was four strokes better than Rose Zhang, who won the tournament last year and finished second this year. Noh came in second last year. 

“I played aggressive each day and really came into the week feeling confident in my game and myself,” she wrote in an email.

Mobile users watch Noh's That Kid's Got Game highlight reel here

So what’s an average day look like for a teenage golfer aiming for the LPGA tour?

Noh putts for 90 minutes when she first gets to the golf course. Then she hits balls on the range for a couple hours – it varies depending on what she’s working on. That’s all before she either plays a full 18 holes or works on her short game. 

You could call the regimen one of the required prescriptions for a chance at success in an extremely difficult sport. Or maybe the framework that allows someone to go 54 holes without a bogey in a tournament. Noh did that Kearney Hill. She said she didn’t feel pressure in the moment, knowing how well she was doing, and instead just took it a hole at a time. 

Noh gets her practice’s at Oakhurst Country Club in Clayton. She hopes to go pro soon and join the tour.

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