Junior golfer Sebastian “Tiny” Camacho gained valuable experience for his preparation for the 2019 Pacific Games, as he finished No. 16 out of the nearly 200 competitors in the 2019 Philippine Airlines-JGFP Junior Inter-club Championship held late last month in the Philippines.
Camacho noted that the pressure of the off-island championship tested and strengthened his mental and physical fortitude. Despite the unfamiliar challenges Camacho faced in the very competitive event, he still finished in the Top 20.
“This experience has really tested my mental toughness and ability to bounce back when things aren’t going my way,” the Grace Christian Academy student said.
“The competitive attitude of all the players and the straight up tenacity that everyone brought really put perspectives on my game and what I can do to better myself,” Camacho added.
The junior golfer has about two more months to get ready for the Pacific Games, as the golf tournament is scheduled to tee off from July 10 to 13 at the Fealeata Golf Course in Samoa. After his positive experience at the golf tourney in the Philippines, the young golfer is inspired to do whatever it takes to reach new heights.
“Knowing what’s out there and the difficulty of the golf courses have really helped look into what’s more important in my game.” Camacho said. “I need to put in more practice time than everyone else.”
Meanwhile, Edward Lee joined the same tournament and placed second overall—duplicating his finish last year.
Although Lee will not be able to compete in the Pacific Games, he still enjoyed the event,
“Placing second in a tournament like that for me is really amazing,” Lee said. “It is an experience I can use to make my game better and stronger.”
Lee and his family will be relocating to Florida early in June and he will not be able to join “Tiny,” player/coach Joe “Kamikaze” Camacho, Ryan Kim, and J.J. Atalig on their trip to Samoa for the quadrennial meet. Rep. Marco Peter (R-Saipan) will take Lee’s spot.
“It’s hard losing good players of [Lee’s] caliber, especially with the Pacific Games being so close, but I respect Edward’s decision to seek golf at a higher level of competition elsewhere since we have limitations here,” Joe Camacho said.
“[Lee] is being replaced by Congressman Marco Peter, who accepted the last-minute notice and has been putting in a lot of practice time,” the player/coach added. “I’m very confident with the team since the guys have been putting in a lot of practice time and they’re committed to representing the CNMI.”