USGA unveils roster for first United States National Team

March 26, 2024

Gianna Clemente was one of the the golfers chosen for the first U.S. National Team.

Valerio Pennicino

The USGA has announced the roster for its inaugural United States National Junior team.

Last year the organization introduced plans for the first American developmental golf program, with a stated mission to "identify, train, develop, fund and support the nation's most promising junior players." This includes the formation of different national teams that will compete against other countries across the globe, meeting at a rotating selection of team camps during the year to expose the players to a variety of courses. Composed 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.

Those 18 players are:

Blades Brown: 16, Nashville, Tenn.
Shyla Brown: 15, McKinney, Texas
Phillip Dunham: 16, Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
Gianna Clemente: 16, Estero, Fla.
Henry Guan: 15, Irving, Texas
Mia Hammond: 16, New Albany, Ohio
Will Hartman: 17, Marvin, N.C.
Ryleigh Knaub: 17, Debary, Fla.
Tyler Mawhinney: 16, Fleming Island, Fla.
Chloe Kovelesky: 17, Boca Raton, Fla.
Michael Riebe: 17, Encinitas, Calif.
Nikki Oh: 16, Torrance, Calif.
Miles Russell: 15, Jacksonville, Fla.
Emerie Schartz: 16 , Wichita, Kan.
Tyler Watts: 16, Huntsville, Ala.
Scarlett Schremmer: 17, Birmingham, Ala.
Asterisk Talley: 15, Chowchilla, Calif.
Angela Zhang: 14, Bellevue, Wash.

According to the USGA, the team’s first training camp will be held beginning May 8 at Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns Creek, Ga., and the first international friendly match will take place this summer against Australia. Members of the team will receive year-round support, which includes coaching, sports psychology and nutritional guidance.

The team will be led by Chris Zambri, who most recently was the associate head coach of the Pepperdine men’s golf program, which won the 2021 NCAA national championship. Zambri spent 14 years on the coaching staff at his alma mater, USC, a stretch where the Trojans won three regional titles and were runners-up in the 2015 NCAA Championships. Zambri is also a former professional who spent seven years (1997-2004) on the Korn Ferry Tour, finishing as high as 19th on the money list in 1998.

“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,” Zambri said. “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.”

The USGA plans to grow the National Junior Team to 30 boys and 30 girls over the next three years, with the aim of funding more than 1,000 junior golfers across the country by 2027.