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March 27, 2024

USGA Unveils First-Ever U.S. National Junior Team

By Alabama Golf News Staff
Scarlett Schremmer member of U.S> National Junior Team

Alabama's Schremmer, Watts selected

Huntsville’s Tyler Watts and Birmingham’s Scarlett Schremmer became a part of USGA history this week when two of Alabama’s top junior golfers were named to be part of the first U.S. National Junior team.

Tyler Watts
Huntsville’s Tyler Watts, selected to the U.S. National unior Team, is the youngest player ever to win the Alabama Men’s Amateur Championship. (Photo: Alabama Golf Association)

Watts is a 16-year-old sophomore at Grissom High School, while Schremmer is 17 and home schooled.

The USGA announced the new initiative Tuesday. The program is part of the new U.S. National Development Program, which launched last year to ensure that American golf is the global leader in the game by focusing on six key pillars: talent identification, access to competition, national teams, athlete resources, player development and relations and athlete financial support.

The program’s elite juniors selected to the U.S. National Junior Team represent the first of three national teams to be formed with the Amateur Team to be announced in 2025 followed by a Young Professional Team in 2026.

Schremmer and Watts are part of a team comprised initially of 10 girls and eight boys, the 18-player roster represents the country’s elite junior golf talent who will embark on a unified pathway designed to nurture the potential of America’s top players. The USGA plans to grow the National Junior Team to 30 boys and 30 girls over the next three years.

A new pipeline for talented U.S. junior players

“We are thrilled to introduce the first U.S. National Junior Team, a group of 18 exceptionally talented young athletes who represent the bright future of American golf,” said Chris Zambri, head coach of the U.S. National Development Program.

“Nearly every other golf country in the world has long enjoyed the benefits of a developmental program and national teams, and the announcement of this team is a major milestone in the USGA’s commitment to the growth of our American athletes and ensuring we remain the global leader in the junior, amateur and professional game,” he said.

Watts and Schremmer recently were honored as part of the Alabama Golf Association’s recent awards ceremony at the Shoal Creek Golf Club. After becoming the youngest winner of the AGA’s State Amateur, Watts was named the AGA’s Junior Boys Player of the Year.

In addition to his state amateur title, Watts won the 2023 Jones Cup Junior Invitational and the Southern Junior Championship, he reached the Round of 32 at the U.S. Junior Amateur. He was a first-team AJGA All-American and was a member of the Alabama Southern Junior Cup team.

Schremmer won the Alabama Girls State Junior Championship and was named the Junior Girls Player of the Year. She also qualified for the 2023 U.S. Girls’ Junior at the Air Force Academy Eisenhower Golf Course in Colorado Springs, finished runner-up to University of Florida standout Maisie Filler in the Jones/Doherty Women’s Amateur and finished third in the Alabama Women’s Amateur. She was an honorable mention 2023 American Junior Golf Association All-American.

The rest of the teams:

Others named to the U.S. National Junior Team


  • Blades Brown, 16, Nashville
  • Phillip Dunham, 16, Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
  • Henry Guan, 15, Irving, Texas
  • Will Hartman, 17, Marvin, N.C.
  • Tyler Mawhinney, 16, Flemming Island, Fla.
  • Michael Riebe, 17, Encinitas, Calif.
  • Miles Russell, 15, Jacksonville, Fla.


  • Shyla Brown, 15, McKinney, Texas
  • Gianna Clemente, 16, Estero, Fla.
  • Mia Hammond, 16, New Albany, Ohio
  • Ryleigh Knaub, 16, Debary, Fla.
  • Chloe Kovelesky, 17, Boca Raton, Fla.
  • Nikki Oh, 16, Torrance, Calif.
  • Emerie Schartz, 16, Wichita, Kansas
  • Asterisk Talley, 15, Chowchilla, Calif.
  • Anglea Zhang, 14, Bellevue, Wash.

The U.S. National Junior Team roster is compiled and reevaluated annually by a selection committee of U.S. National Development Program staff members. Selections are made in accordance with eligibility criteria and based on a variety of competitive factors including scoring, results, statistics, rankings, sportsmanship and scouting.

Throughout the 2024 season, the 18 players on the U.S. National Junior Team will participate at golf camps and compete internationally under the U.S. flag.

Expansion of junior development programs planned

The U.S> National Junior Team will attend a training camp May 8-11 at Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns Creek, Ga., and the first international friendly match will take place this summer against Australia. Members of the U.S. National Junior Team will receive year-round support, including coaching and analysis, sports psychology and nutritional guidance.

Program staff will collaborate with players’ home coaches and support teams to ensure they have the resources necessary to develop the physical, mental and life skills to reach their potential.

Earlier this year, the USGA opened applications for theprogram, which will assist talented golfers and their families with the financial resources needed to pursue a competitive path in the game. All 2024 grants will be awarded in the coming weeks.

The U.S. National Development Program and its grant program is supported by philanthropic giving and secured resources to fulfill the USGA’s commitment to providing pathways to elite levels of the game, regardless of financial considerations.

For more information, visit

In January, the USGA announced that it had created a state team pilot program that expands the pipeline for elite junior golfers into the U.S. National Development Program. Through close collaboration between the USGA, its allied golf associations, the PGA of America and relevant state junior programs, seven states joined the initial phase with the goal of all 50 states having a team by 2033. In February, it was announced that Ally would become a founding partner of the USNDP.

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Featured image courtesy of the Alabama Golf Association

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