Honolulu’s Tadd Fujikawa hopes he can find his comfort zone back on the eGolf Professional Tour the next two weeks. The Moanalua High School graduate shot 69 in the first round of the Donald Ross Championship on Wednesday at Southern Pines, N.C. He heads to South Carolina next week for the River Hills Classic.
From there, Fujikawa plans to try a few Nationwide Tour qualifiers.
"I’m not too sure what’s after that," he said by phone from the East Coast, where he is now based, "but I’ve still got a bunch of tournaments coming up."
This is Fujikawa’s first eGolf event in 2011. Last year, he played in 14 and won $75,000 and the eGolf Tour Championship. He started on the NGA Hooters Tour this year, which also plays most of its events in Georgia and the Carolinas. Fujikawa finished eighth in his first start, but has missed the past five cuts.
The Hooters Tour is heading to Oklahoma and Texas in June and the timing was right to take a break. He worked with his coaches in Sea Island, Ga., to try and break out of "a little rut where nothing is working good and I’m struggling on the course, not getting anything done." His scoring average is precisely par 72 on the Hooters Tour.
"Everyone goes through it," Fujikawa said. "Maybe you try a little too hard and everything backfires. I noticed I was starting to do that again. I did it last year. There are always ups and downs and highs and lows."
He found improvement at last week’s U.S. Open qualifier, but didn’t score well enough to move on to sectionals. This week he will try something new.
"I feel good," Fujikawa said. "I want to go out there and let it happen and not force anything."
U.S. Open updates
Skye Inakoshi, the 15-year-old Mid-Pacific Institute student who won Oahu’s U.S. Open local qualifier, failed to advance from Monday’s sectional qualifier at Ibaraki, Japan. Inakoshi shot 83-81—164. The top four qualifiers, from Korea, Australia and Japan, were at 135 and 136.
There is another sectional Monday in England. The last 11 are all played June 6 in the U.S. Among others who have qualified for sectionals are Hawaii’s Kyle Hayashi, Kirk Nelson and Eric Dugas, 2006 state high school champ Chan Kim, former University of Hawaii golfer Pierre-Henri Soero and Hawaii Pearl Open winner John Ellis.