On Thursday, the American Junior Golf Association announced a new Memorial Day event for girls hosted by one of the LPGA Tour’s brightest young stars. The Under Armour / Albane Valenzuela Girls Championship will take place at Longbow Golf Club near Phoenix, Ariz. May 27-30.
Valenzuela is the seventh LPGA Tour player to serve as a host for an AJGA event in 2021, joining Annika Sorenstam, Alison Lee, Sung Hyun Park, Se Ri Pak, Stacy Lewis, and Marina Alex.
“We are extremely excited to offer a highly-competitive opportunity for girls with leadership from Albane,” said Jason Etzen, AJGA chief business officer. “With support from partners Under Armour and Longbow Golf Club, this tournament continues to expand critical playing opportunities for girls. We are excited to celebrate a strong female role model who is passionate about giving back.”
“I signed with Under Armour this year, they are a new partner,” Valenzuela told LPGA.com. “We talked about perhaps doing a tournament, which is something I’m really excited about. It’s also very humbling. I am really honored to have my name on a tournament. As a rookie on Tour, I didn’t play well enough to deserve to have my name on an event. But to partner with the AJGA and Under Armour® is really something special.
“The AJGA gives junior golfers a platform, not just for golf but to showcase leadership and chart their futures. I’m also very excited that it’s an all-girls event,” Valenzuela said. “Also, we get the opportunity to invite players from all over the world. I’m obviously kind of a global citizen. I grew up in Mexico, went to college and have lots of friends in the U.S. and I consider myself to be Swiss. Playing with girls from all different countries has always been special.
“And giving back has always been very important to me. Junior golf has always been a huge part of making me the person I am today. To be a role model and be part of presenting this opportunity to the next generation of junior golfers means the world to me.”
The 23-year-old, who now resides in the Bahamas, is a two-time U.S. Women’s Amateur finalist who won the 2013, 2014 and 2015 Swiss Ladies and Junior Order of Merit. She tied for low amateur at the 2016 ANA Inspiration, was low amateur at the 2019 Evian Championship, won the 2015 Spanish International Amateur, and the 2014 Swiss International Amateur.
At Stanford, Valenzuela won Pac-12 Women’s Golfer of the Year as a junior – the first player to do so in Cardinal history. She was a Golfweek First Team All-American, three-time All-Pac-12 First Team honoree, and ANNIKA Award finalist who graduated with honors in 2020.
Longbow Golf Club hosts the Epson Tour’s Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic and has been ranked a “Top 100 Resort Course” in America by Golf Magazine.