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Casey Nakama has instructed many of Hawaii's biggest and brightest golf names.
A few of them are listed below.
Phenomenal 14-year-old golfer Michelle Wie got her start here at the Casey Nakama Golf Development Center. Michelle learned the most important part of the game... fundamentals. At the tender age of 9, Michelle started her official golf instruction under the guidance of Casey Nakama, Director of Instruction.
When Casey first began teaching Michelle, he worked on her basic fundamentals: Teaching her to grip, a balanced athletic stance, and maintaining a good posture angle relative to the ball. They worked on keeping the club on the proper plane and keeping her swing-arc wide. Because she was tall for her age, her wide swing created an extremely powerful golf swing. Casey then began to develop her “game skills” (short game, course management and distance control). After seeing her incredible progress, becoming a better player with each passing day, Casey realized the only thing she lacked was tournament experience.
While under Casey's guidance for 3½ years, Michelle compiled impressive accolades, including becoming the youngest to qualify for the United States Women's Amateur Public Links at age 10 (also qualifying at ages 11 and 12), winning the prestigious Jennie K. Wilson Invitational at age 11 (winning by 9 strokes), the youngest player (11 years, 10 months) to qualify for the Manoa Cup (Hawaii State Amateur Match-Play Championship), and winning the 2001 HSWGA Stroke-Play Championship.
PGA Tour professional Dean Wilson also seeks Casey's guidance when he returns to Hawaii. Wilson was Rookie of the Year on the Japan Golf Tour in 1998 and played for 3 years, accumulating over $2 million in winnings as a multiple time winner. In 2003, Wilson got his PGA Tour card via the tour's Q-School and finished 98th on the PGA Tour in his rookie season. Wilson's biggest highlight in his rookie season on the PGA Tour was at the 2003 Bank of America Colonial Classic where he was paired with Annika Sorenstam for the first two rounds as she made history.
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Norman-Ganin Asao, the #1 ranked amateur in Hawaii in 2003, who turned professional in 2004.
Joe Phengsavath was the 2002 Hawaii State Amateur Champion and turned professional in 2004.
Randy Shibuya was the 2001 Hawaii State Amateur Champion and the 2000 Manoa Cup Champion.
Bradley Shigezawa became the youngest player to qualify for the Manoa Cup, breaking Michelle
Wie’s record at 11 years, 8 months.
Stephanie Kono won the 2001 HSWGA Match-Play Championship, the 2003 Jenny K. Wilson Invitational, and the 2003 HSWGA Stroke-Play Championship.
Mahina Ah Yuen was the 1999 HSWGA Match-Play Championship winner.
Kathy Cho won the 1996 Jenny K. Wilson Invitational, at 15 years old.
Cyd Okino in the only female golfer in Hawaii that by the age of 15 qualified for all major USGA tournaments (U.S. Women's Public Links, U.S. Girls' Junior Amateur, U.S. Women's Open, U.S. Women's Amateur, U.S. Women's State Team Championship). Locally, she has won the Women's Division in the Hawaii State Open ('06, '07, '08) and the Hawaii State Amateur Match-Play ('05, '08).