DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The Volvik Championship announced Feb. 4 it has awarded a sponsor exemption to 14-year-old Nikkei golfer Mika Liu of Beverly Hills.
An accomplished and promising young player, Liu earned the invite on the strength of her already impressive junior and amateur golf résumés.
“Mika is one of these young phenomena that we feel deserves a chance to show that she belongs on the professional tours,” said Volvik USA President Don Shin. “We’re excited to see her playing a Volvik golf ball at the Volvik Championship.”
Liu, a freshman at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., won her first career IMG Junior Golf Tour title in October 2013 at the Sara Bay Country Club competing in the Girls 15-18 division. It wasn’t her first trip to the winner’s circle, however, as the Beverly Hills native has earned medalist honors in 10 national events including the 2011 and 2013 USGA U.S. Girl’s Junior Qualifier. She was also a key factor on the victorious 2012 and 2013 U.S. Team at the Evian Jr. Masters, becoming the first player selected for Team USA two years in a row.
“I would like to thank [Kyung-Ahn] Moon, the chairman of Volvik Korea, for giving me this great opportunity to play in my first professional event in USA,” said Liu. “I have experienced playing in the junior circuit, women’s amateur events and one Asia LPGA event but never participated in any professional event in USA. This will be a great and fun challenge for me.”
The young star will compete alongside 120 Symetra Tour players at the Industry Hills Golf Club, home of the 2011 Kia Classic on the LPGA Tour, for the Volvik Championship.
Competition will take place Feb. 24 through March 2.
A sponsor exemption allows tournament organizers the opportunity to select amateur or professional golfers to compete against some of the top professional women golfers in the world.
The Symetra Tour, the official road to the LPGA, will enter its 34th competitive season in 2014. With the support of its umbrella sponsor, Symetra, the tour’s mission is to prepare the world’s best young women professional golfers for a successful career on the LPGA Tour. The top-10 money winners each season earn memberships on the LPGA Tour for the following season.