MENIFEE, California – Led by 15-year-old champion Pauline del Rosario, a group of eight Filipino girls are ready to take on one of the biggest tournaments in California this week – the Callaway Junior World Championships in San Diego.
"Sobrang excited na (ako) because it's going to be my fourth year playing here," said del Rosario.
Del Rosario has taken first place at the Callaway for two years in a row. Although she is the reigning champion and is also coming off two tournament wins in the past two weeks, Del Rosario isn't pressuring herself to win.
The teenager is also moving up a division and taking on a new course, and playing in a four-day tournament instead of three.
"I'm going to be playing at a new course and I'm the youngest one there, so I don't think there's pressure on the youngest one," she said.
"We've been doing exercises ever since summer to prepare for this trip, so I think we'll be doing pretty well," she added.
The girls have been in the United State since the past month, and will stay in the US until August.
"We're a bit used to it, but we miss home na," said del Rosario. "So we're going to do our best for our family back home."
They have been competing in different tournaments, most of them as individuals. The Callaway will be one of the few tournaments where all eight players will participate in.
Del Rosario has been on a hot streak in the past few weeks, winning championships in Long Beach and Sycuan.
She and the rest of the team will begin competing on Tuesday.
It has already been a successful trip for the Filipinas, as four of them have already qualified for the biggest tournament – the US Championship in Arizona. The other four are hoping that strong performances in San Diego can also boost their hopes of qualifying.