PORT HOPE – A field of 156 golfers will tee it up at Dalewood Golf Club when the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) 2015 Investors Group Junior Boys’ Championship begins on July 21.
“To bring the province’s premier junior boys’ championship to Port Hope and Dalewood Golf Club is very exciting,” said Mike Kelly, GAO Interim Executive Director. “The course will present a great test to all players in their quest for the gold medal and to secure their ticket to the National Championship.”
“On behalf of the members and staff of Dalewood Golf Club we are very honoured to be hosting such a great event,” said Jamie Carter, Dalewood Golf Club Director of Golf & Operations. “The 156 Junior Boys who have qualified are deserving of a terrific venue to play for the championship and Dalewood is ready! We have a great group of members who have come forward to volunteer in assisting the GAO to facilitate what will be a great week of golf. We hope that Dalewood will be viewed by every competitor as not only a wonderful part of their junior career but also as a great part of their journey into maturing into fine young men!”
Players qualified for the event, which will run from July 21-24, through one of 10 qualifiers that were held throughout the province during June and early July.
In addition to the title itself, the golfers will be looking to claim one of the Canadian Junior Boys’ Championship qualifying spots and the top three finishers will earn the right to represent Ontario in the inter-provincial competition at the Canadian Junior Boys’ Championship, Aug. 3-6 at the Summerlea Golf & Country Club in Vaudreuil-Dorion, Quebec.
Included in this year’s field are a few past GAO Champions. Scarborough’s Gavin McIver, who won the 2014 Juvenile Championship, and Port Perry’s Sam McNulty, the 2013 Juvenile champion, will both be part of the field.
In addition, former GAO Bantam Champions in the field include: Lakeshore’s Curtis Hughes (2014), Vaughn’s Tony Gil (2011) who also won the 2014 Investors Group Junior Boys’ Spring Classic, and Port Lambton’s Brendan Seys (2010).
Unionville’s Max Sear, who captured the 2015 Investors Group Junior Boys’ Spring Classic and Trevor Ranton, the 2014 Junior Boys’ Match Play Champion, will also be players to watch.
Both Gil and Ranton, will represent Golf Canada as members of their Development Squad.
All seven members of Team Ontario will also compete in the event. Joining Sear and Seys will be London’s Jackson Bowery, Dunrobin’s Jake Bryson, Thornhill’s Jason Chung, Vaughn’s Kelvin Lim, and Burlington’s Kyle MacDonald. The GAO’s regional teams (Ottawa, York, Waterloo, Niagara and Essex-Kent) will also be well represented.
Leading the local contingent will be a trio of players from Cobourg and the host club: Dalewood. Mackenzie Carter, Nicholas Oosterhof and Jacob Richards will look to win the tournament on their home course.
Spectators are invited to Dalewood to check out action throughout the week. The opening round begins on July 21st at 7:30 a.m. For complete information, including pairings see the tournament site at: http://gao.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/gao15/event/gao1520/index.htm
About the Investors Group Junior Boys’ Championship
The Investors Group Ontario Junior Boys’ Championship is open to male golfers 18 years of age and under. The tournament was first contested in 1923. Past champions include: Albin Choi (2009), Matt Hill (2007), Jon Mills (1996), Mike Weir (1998), Kelly Roberts (1969), Stu Hamilton (1963) and Gary Cowan (1956).
CAMBRIDGE — The Golf Association of Ontario (GAO) was saddened to learn that former volunteer Emerson Creed passed away on July 10 at the age of 94. Creed began volunteering with the Ontario Golf Association (OGA) in 1965 and was a course rater in 1992. In 2003, the (GAO) named Creed as an Honourary Life Director. In 2011, Creed was also presented the GAO’s Dick Grimm Distinguished Service Award.
Obituary, courtesy of London Free Press:
CREED, Emerson Russell – After a brief stay in Cambridge, Ontario, in his 94th year, Emerson went to be with his Lord on Friday, July 10, 2015. Emerson was a compassionate and principled man, an RCAF Pilot, champion golfer, and retired Financial Editor of the London Free Press. He was a man of deep faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and his commitment to him was evident in all aspects of his life. Predeceased by his wife Elisabeth and son David, Emerson will be missed by his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at 11am Saturday, August 8, 2015 at Oakridge Presbyterian Church, London, Ontario. Reception will follow at London Hunt and Country Club.
When the 2015 Toronto Pan American Games, and specifically the golf competition, begin on July 16, four golfers will don the maple leaf to represent Canada. The veteran of the squad will be 50-year-old, Charlottetown, P.E.I. native Lorie Kane.
Kane, fourth ranked professional in Canada, has been a fixture on the Canadian golf scene since the early 1990s. In 1996 she made her LPGA debut and has gone on to win four tournaments on the tour including: the 2000 Michelob Light Classic, 2000 New Albany Golf Classic, 2000 Mizuno Classic and 2001 LPGA Takefuji Classic.
Kane also has two wins in the Hyundai Team Matches and two wins on the Legends Tour. As an amateur, Kane captured the 1992 Espirito Santo Trophy,.
This will not be the first time that Kane has represented Canada. She represented her country at the World Cup in 2005, 2006 and 2008 and was also part of the World Team for the 2010-13 Handa Cups.
Perhaps one of the greatest honours Kane has received is the Order of Canada, which she was awarded in 2006. On the LPGA Tour, she has also received the 1998 Heather Farr Player Award, which represents hard work, dedication and love of the game. In 2000 she received the William and Mousie Powell Award, an honour given to the player whose behavior and deeds best exemplifies the spirit, ideals and values of the LPGA.
Team Canada will undoubtedly lean on Kane’s leadership and experience as they search for Pan Am gold.
Don’t miss your chance to see the legendary Kane and the rest of Team Canada at the Pan Am Games. For more information visit: http://www.toronto2015.org/golf
UNION— In a week that had a little bit of everything from unpredictable weather, to penalty strokes to the round-three leaders, things finally came to a conclusion at the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) Investors Group Women’s Amateur on July 10 at the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club, the 100th anniversary of the event.
Heading into the final round, Mono’s Brittany Marchand held a two-shot lead. However, it would be a lights-out performance by Maddie Szeryk that would be the final-round story as she shot a four-under (68) to overcome the deficit and hoist the Marlene Stewart-Streit Trophy.
Szeryk, a Canadian-American dual citizen, makes her home in Texas, where she also attends Texas A&M, but has family connections to London with her grandparents residing there. She is also a member of the Golf Canada National Team.
The 18-year-old Szeryk wasted little time in grabbing the lead. She birdied the first hole and then added three more on the fifth, sixth and eighth to lead at the turn. She was able to keep up her strong play on the back nine in order to take the win at seven-under for the tournament (73-70-70-68).
After the win, Szeryk spoke about what it meant to win the 100th Ontario Women’s Amateur. “It is a pretty big honour to win the 100th one, that is amazing!” Said Szeryk. “I came into the tournament hoping to play well and am really happy with the outcome. Coming into the tournament I knew it was a huge event and that it would mean a lot to win it. My family is from London, so to win here made it even better.”
When asked about what made the difference this week, Szeryk credited her play to having a solid all-round game. “It really was everything. I was focused on each shot, playing my plan and hitting the right shots. Today was really solid.”
Sharing the silver medal were Marchand and Victoria, British Columbia’s Naomi Ko. Marchand, the National Team and Brampton Golf Club member had her struggles during the final round and just couldn’t find her consistency. She finished the day one-over (73) and four-under for the Tournament (69-73-69-73).
As for Ko, she got off to a hot start with back-to-back birdies on the first two holes. She was able to get to three-under for the day before the turn but gave one stroke back with a bogey on the tenth. Despite her best efforts, she was unable to make a run at the top spot and had to settle for a share of second with a final round two-under (70) and four-under for the tournament. (71-68-75-70).
Based on their results, Marchand, Toronto’s Elizabeth Tong and Ottawa’s Grace St-Germain all move on to represent Ontario, in the inter-provincial competition, at the Canadian Women’s Amateur, July 28-31, at the Riverside Country Club in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
For full final results see the tournament site: http://gao.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/gao15/event/gao1518/index.htm.
The GAO would like to thank the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club, their staff and members for hosting the event. A big thanks go to Tournament Chair Jim Waite and his 100 volunteers for all of their hard work throughout the week. Thanks also to all of the GAO volunteers and title sponsor Investors group for their continued support of golf in Ontario.
About the Investors Group Women’s Amateur
First played in 1904, the Investors Group Ontario Women’s Amateur Championship is being contested for the 100th time this summer, and for the second time at the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club. Past champions include 1968 LPGA championship winner Sandra Post (1964), LPGA Tour players Alena Sharp (1999) and Rebecca Lee-Bentham (2007), Brooke Henderson (2014) and World Golf Hall of Fame member Marlene Stewart Streit, who holds the record for the most number of titles with 11.
OTTER LAKE— After six gruelling rounds and six hikes through the very lengthy Seguin Valley Golf Club course in Otter Lake, Thomas Giroux has capped off the week and is the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) Junior Boys’ Match Play Champion.
The 16-year-old Giroux finished off the event by defeating Brampton’s Jacob Presutti in the final match by a score of 4&3. Giroux, from Georgetown and the Club at North Halton was able to win not only the battle on the course but also the battle of attrition to hoist his first provincial title, in just his first GAO event.
“It feels pretty good to win in my first GAO event,” said Giroux. “I’d say the highlight of the week had to be my two rounds yesterday beating two Team Ontario guys, those were two big wins. This is the biggest win I have had and hopefully I can keep it rolling and get some more.”
Giroux got out to a big lead in the final match before slipping up. He talked about how he kept things on track. “With the par putt on the 12th hole, I knew he would need to make something big happen to come back, so I knew it was pretty real at that point.”
For Giroux, he began his quest to the trophy as the 46th seed out of the 64 players in the field. He began by defeating Whitby’s Brendan Dunphy in the opening round 5&4. He moved on to face Scarborough’s Benjamin Thompson in the second round and earned a 2up victory. Next, Giroux matched up with Owen Dick, from Toronto, and earned a 2&1 win in the match. That pitted him against Team Ontario’s Jackson Bowery, from London, but Giroux had no problem with him as he picked up a 4&3 win to advance to the semi finals against Vaughn’s Kelvin Lim. Lim had been on a tear of his own but it was stopped by Giroux who won 5&4 to move on to the finals.
As for Presutti, 15, from the Brampton Golf Club, his road to the finals began as the 28th seed. He defeated Bracebridge’s Denver Dafoe (3&1), Grimsby’s Aaron Black (1up), Toronto’s Jason Williams (1up), Richmond Hill’s Ryan Stolys (4&2) and Bowmanville’s Matthew Cholod (1up) before eventually falling short in the finals.
The GAO would like to thank Seguin Valley Golf Club and their staff, along with all volunteers for helping to run the event.
About the Junior Boys’ Match Play Championship
The Junior Boys’ Match Play Championship has been contested since 1998. Male golfers under 19 years of age before August 1 are eligible to compete. The field is determined by results from four qualifiers. Notable past champions include Matt McQuillan, Justin Shin, Stephane Dubois, and Jon Boncoddo.
PETERBOROUGH – A field of 156 golfers will take to the Peterborough Golf & Country Club when the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) 2015 Investors Group Men’s Amateur Championship kicks off on July 14.
“To host the most prestigious event on the GAO calendar is certainly an honour for our Club,” said Chris Jones, Head Golf Professional at Peterborough Golf & Country Club. “It speaks to the level of quality of our Club and course as well as to the history that both this event and Peterborough Golf & Country Club share. Our members are extremely excited to be able to watch the best players in our province play our course.”
“It’s very exciting for the GAO to return to Peterborough Golf & Country Club to host another major championship,” said Mike Kelly, GAO Interim Executive Director. “The Ontario Amateur is one of the strongest fields in Canadian amateur golf and there is no question the players are in for treat but a stern test in their quest to hoist the Gary Cowan Trophy.”
Players qualified for the event, which will run from July 14-17, through one of 14 qualifiers that were held throughout the province during May and June.
In addition to the title itself, the golfers will be looking to claim one of the Canadian Amateur Championship qualifying spots and the top three finishers will earn the right to represent Ontario in the inter provincial competition at the Canadian Amateur, Aug. 10-13 at the Weston Golf & Country Club/Lambton Golf & Country Club in Toronto.
With so many of the favorites from last year moving on to the professional ranks, including 2014 champion Chris Hemmerich and 2010 Champion Corey Conners, this year’s event is wide open. The only former champion in the field is 2008 winner Dave Bunker. Bunker, 50, is also a three-time Ontario Mid-Amateur Champion and recently qualified, on his first attempt, and competed in the U.S. Senior Open (June 22-28).
A trio of recent GAO winners will also tee it up with the rest of the field. Waterloo’s Matt LeMay, 2014 Investors Group Junior Boys’ Champion, Bognor’s Josiah Dixon, 2015 Men’s Champion of Champions winner, and Aurora’s Peter Willis, 2014 Baka Public Player Champion, will all look for more provincial success.
The Golf Canada national programs will be well represented with National Team member Blair Hamilton, from Burlington, Development Squad members Tony Gil, from Vaughn, and Trevor Ranton, Waterloo, all part of the field.
Team Ontario will send a trio of players to compete in the event. Unionville’s Maxwell Sear, London’s Jackson Bowery and Vaughn’s Kelvin Lim will all be participating. Lim will have the distinct honour of being the youngest competitor at just 13 years of age.
The local contingent will be comprised of Ryan Ahrens, Michael Farrugia, Luke Gavin, Christian Rutherford and Paul Stevens who all call Peterborough home.
For complete results during the tournament and full information see the tournament page at: http://gao.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/gao15/event/gao1519/index.htm
Spectators are welcome to attend the event and there is no charge. The first round tee times begin at 7:30 a.m. on July 14.
About the Investors Group Ontario Men’s Amateur
The Investors Group Ontario Amateur Championship was first played in 1923 at Lakeview Golf and Country Club, and has a rich history of former champions. Past winners include 2003 Masters Champion Mike Weir (1990 & 1992), PGA Tour player Jon Mills (2001), Gerry Kesselring (1949, ‘51, ‘52, ‘53) and Gary Cowan, who holds the record for the most Ontario Amateur Championships with nine (1964, ’68, ’71, ’74, ’74, ’75, ’77, ’78, ’81 & ’84).
Comprehensive report developed in partnership with the National Golf Foundation provides a definitive snapshot of golf facilities and development in Canada
[OAKVILLE, ONT.]—Golf Canada, in partnership with the PGA of Canada, has released Golf Facilities in Canada 2015—the definitive report on golf facilities and development in Canada.
Golf Facilities in Canada 2015 is the result of a collaborative effort between Golf Canada, the PGA of Canada and the National Golf Foundation (NGF), a golf industry knowledge research firm which delivers independent and objective market intelligence, insights and trends.
The report identifies all existing public and private facilities in the country; and defines supply by province, type and number of holes. The report also includes information on facility openings and closings, as well as the number and type of facilities currently in development.
“Canadian golf facilities are the foundation for major sport participation, economic impact, tourism, charitable giving and environmental stewardship and the Golf Facilities in Canada 2015 report provides a comprehensive breakdown of the golf courses and projects that form that Canadian golf landscape,” said Golf Canada CEO Scott Simmons. “Canada represents 7 per cent of the total world’s supply of golf courses and this first ever Canadian report offers an in-depth summary of national and provincial data.”
“The PGA of Canada in partnership with Golf Canada is excited to present this captivating study of golf facilities in Canada compiled by one of the world’s leading research firms, the National Golf Foundation,” said PGA of Canada CEO Gary Bernard. “As the second oldest and third largest professional golf association in the world, the PGA of Canada and its 3,700 members are proud to be a driving force at golf facilities from coast to coast.”
A snapshot of data captured in Golf Facilities in Canada 2015:
- Canada is home to 2,346 public and private golf facilities; ranking it third in the world in total supply.
- Seventy-seven per cent of the total golf supply is located in Canada’s four most populated provinces—Ontario, Québec, Alberta and British Columbia.
- While course construction has slowed during the past several years (a trend mirrored in many mature and developed golf nations, including the United States and the United Kingdom) golf remains extremely accessible in Canada. A little more than 90 per cent of the country’s supply is open to the public.
- Of the 2,126 public facilities in Canada, half are located in Ontario and Québec, which together account for 61 per cent of the country’s total population. Furthermore, the two provinces are also home to 73 per cent of Canada’s 220 private clubs.
- Nine-hole golf accounts for almost 37 per cent of Canada’s total supply, which outnumbers
18-hole supply in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. In Saskatchewan, 18-hole courses are outnumbered 3 to 1 by 9-hole courses.
- Canada features nine 12-hole facilities (six of which are in Ontario) and three 6-hole facilities.
- Resort golf, though a small segment of Canada’s overall supply, is a significant contributor to tourism in several provinces. Countrywide, 167 facilities (or approximately 7 per cent) of total supply are connected to a resort or a resort/real estate operation.
- Course construction peaked in the 1960s with the opening of more than 420 facilities. A second significant growth spurt occurred in the period between 1990 and 1999, when more than 310 courses—13 per cent of total supply —opened. The growth was highlighted by the opening of 257 facilities in the four largest provinces: Ontario, Québec, Alberta and British Columbia.
- Since 2010, 29 facilities have opened in six different provinces. In recent years, Canada has seen only moderate growth, and currently has 31 18-hole equivalent facilities in various stages of development.
- Of those facilities in various stages of development, 17 have broken ground including seven in Alberta and four in Nova Scotia. Nearly 60 per cent of new projects are tied to a real estate development.
- In the past five to 10 years, 158 facilities have closed. One in five of those closures were located in Ontario, which is home to 35 per cent of the total supply of Canada’s facilities. Three of Canada’s 10 provinces have seen fewer than five facility closures during the past decade.
The complete Golf Facilities in Canada 2015 report including national and provincial data is available for download here.
The Golf Facilities in Canada 2015 report aligns with the Canadian data featured in the World Facilities Report released earlier this year by the R&A in partnership with the NGF. The world report revealed by the end of 2014, there were 34,011 golf facilities in 204 countries around the world. It shows that nearly 80 per cent of these facilities are located in 10 countries: the United States, Japan, Canada, England, Australia, Germany, France, Scotland, South Africa and Sweden. The world report also revealed by the end of 2014, Canada ranked third* in total number of golf facilities by country behind only the United States and Japan (*The UK combined has the third-most course in the world overall, however when viewed as separate countries, Canada is third and England is fourth). For more on the world report, visit www.randa.org.
The golf industry is worth more than $14.3-billion to the Canadian economy and represents more than 1 per cent of our nation’s total GDP. The $5-billion in direct revenues generated by Canada’s 2,346 facilities are more than the revenues generated by all other participation sports and recreational facilities combined ($4.8 billion). The numbers reinforce the massive financial, charitable, and environmental impact that golf has in communities across Canada including hundreds of thousands of jobs, billions in taxes, and a major tourism driver both domestic and international. Canadian golf facilities are a channel for major charitable giving with close to 37,000 events at Canadian courses raising more than $533-million annually for worthwhile causes. Canadians are passionate about the game of golf with a participation base of 5.7-million Canadians who enjoy more than 60-million rounds annually. For more information about the robust impact of golf in Canada visit www.canadagolfs.ca.
Canadians from points far and wide encouraged to share their stories at: www.golfcanadagolf.ca and get involved all season long using #GolfCanadaGolf
(June 25, 2015) –With nearly 5.7 million Canadian golfers and 60 million golf rounds played annually, it’s no surprise golf is the number one participation sport in the country and the anchor for a newly launched initiative at GolfCanadaGolf.ca to herald the love of the game.
Earlier this spring, a collection of golf industry leaders gathered to create the Golf Canada Golf campaign to invite Canadians to share their stories and show their support for Canadian golf. This upcoming Canada Day holiday, golfers from all points far and wide in Canada are encouraged to add their nostalgic story about the great game of golf with a special incentive; the most compelling submissions have the chance to be profiled during the upcoming RBC Canadian Open.
“The Golf Canada Golf campaign welcomes Canadian golfers from all corners of Canada, walks of life and ages and stages to share their personal stories and special connections to the game,” shared Gavin Roth, Chief Commercial Officer with Golf Canada.
Since its spring launch, the campaign has logged more than 100 story profiles to www.golfcanadagolf.ca, more than 10,000 story views and over 1.75 million impressions through social media. Stories have been shared from regions across Canada and the hashtag #golfcanadagolf has been gaining momentum in the weeks since the campaign launched.
As part of the campaign to profile the game of golf, a custom website – www.golfcanadagolf.ca – was developed to feature a mix of stories, from professionally filmed feature segments to personal submissions by golfers with a unique story to share.
“We’re excited that Canadian celebrities, like former Toronto Maple Leaf Wendel Clark and Canada’s top-ranked player on the Women’s World Ranking Brooke Henderson have joined in to support the campaign, in addition to a number of feature stories that were filmed to launch the campaign,” added Roth. “Canadian LPGA Tour player Alena Sharp also shares her story – a tribute to the impact her dad had on her golfing career – as part of the campaign’s family focus.”
The site also features a social media hub that curates stories using the hashtag #golfcanadagolf as well as resources for golfers looking to find a course, connect with a PGA of Canada professional or learn more about junior golf programs in their community.
Sharing golf’s story means celebrating the health, social, economic, competitive and charitable benefits of the game in Canada. A snapshot of the Canadian golf landscape reveals an industry that is worth more than $14.3 billion annually to the Canadian economy, numbers that reinforce the massive financial, charitable, social, tourism and environmental impact golf has in communities across Canada.
In addition, Canadian golf facilities are a channel for major charitable giving with close to 37,000 events at Canadian courses helping to raise more than $533 million annually for worthwhile causes.
The Golf Canada Golf campaign was developed and executed in partnership with BrandFire Marketing Group, a full-service agency based in Toronto that in 2014 was named among Profit 500’s Fastest Growing Companies in Canada.
The campaign will extend throughout the 2015 season, inviting golfers and sport enthusiasts to share and celebrate the many stories that make the game of golf special in Canada.
KITCHENER, ON— Heading into the final round, Elmira’s Garrett Rank held a two-shot lead at the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) Investors Group Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship at the Westmount Golf & Country Club in Kitchener. By the end of the day, Rank remained at the top of the leaderboard and claimed his first Ontario Men’s Mid Amateur title.
The 27-year-old Rank finished the round three-under (70) to bring his tournament total to seven-under (74-68-70-212). Despite finding trouble during the round, Rank was able to hit recovery after recovery to win. Last year, Rank won the Canadian Mid-Amateur but said following it up with the provincial title was still a great feeling.
“It feels good! Any time you can win a tournament and put yourself in a winning position it feels really good,” said Rank.
Rank went on to talk about how the weather earlier in the week didn’t affect his overall tournament. “I almost blew away on Tuesday, it was that windy! I just knew that everyone had to play in it and I just played my way through it. I knew if I could keep my score around par I would be near the lead. In the second and third rounds I made some key putts. I didn’t make everything but I was really solid. I took advantage of my good iron shots and made birdies and some good par saves.”
Despite some tough shots during his final round, Rank was able to recover well, something that he said helped him win. “There were a few times today where there could have been some big swings but I managed to save a couple bogeys. I just tried to keep the momentum moving in the right direction and eventually made some late birdies.”
For Rank, he will now turn his attention to representing Canada at the Pan American Games, July 16-19 at Angus Glen Golf Club in Markham, and the RBC Canadian Open, July 23-26 at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville.
Earning the silver medal was Toronto’s Kevin Fawcett. The Toronto Golf Club member shot an even-par final round (73) to finish the tournament at two-under (71-73-73-217).
Picking up the bronze medal was New Hamburg’s Josh Hunke. Hunke, from Deer Ridge Golf Club, also ended the day at even par bringing his three-day total to one-under (72-73-73-218).
Rank, Fawcett and Hunke were all named as the members of Team Ontario for the inter-provincial competition at the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur, Aug. 25-28 in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia.
Capturing the Mid-Masters (40+) trophy was Woodstock’s Drew Symons. Symons, the 2012 Mid-Amateur Champion and Craigowan Golf & Country Club member, ended the day one-under (72) and finished in a tie for fourth overall at even for the tournament (73-74-72-219).
For full tournament information and the final leaderboard see the tournament site at: http://gao.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/gao15/event/gao1516/index.htm
The top 41 finishers in the event earned entry into the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship.
ABOUT THE INVESTORS GROUP ONTARIO MEN’S MID-AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP
The Investors Group Ontario Men’s Mid-Amateur championship is a 54-hole competition featuring Ontario’s best golfers age 25 and older that have gained entry into the event through one of nine qualifying tournaments or through an exemption. Competitors age 40 and over also compete for the Ontario Men’s Mid-Master division trophy. Contested annually since 1993, past champions of the event include Ontario Golf Hall of Fame members Stu Hamilton and Kelly Roberts, Dave Bunker, Graham Hill and Drew Symons.
The GAO would like to thank all of the volunteers and staff from the Westmount Golf & Country Club for all of their support in hosting the event. Thanks also to Investors Group as title sponsor and for their support of golf in Ontario.
PORT CARLING— Not only did defending champion Dave Bunker need to battle a very worthy opponent, Quinn Vilneff, in the finals of the Golf Association of Ontario (GAO) Ontario Men’s Match Play Championship, but he also had to battle the elements to claim his fourth title.
The tournament, held at the Lake Joseph Club in Port Carling, wrapped up on June 12 after six rounds of matches that began on June 9. What began as 64 players came down to Bunker, from the Brampton Golf Club and Vilneff, from the Essex Golf & Country Club.
The final round was a soggy affair with rain falling on the competitors throughout the round. Woodbridge’s Bunker held a lead as they began the back nine, but Vilneff made Bunker work for it, forcing him to attempt a four-foot putt on the 14th hole, which the 50-year-old Bunker missed. That brought Amherstburg’s Vilneff back to all square. The 23-year-old Vilneff would get up and down on the 15th to take the lead. After the pair were even on the 16th, Bunker squared the match on the 17th hole, setting up a winner take all situation on the 18th. Both players played the hole similarly with their tee and approach shots. They both found the green in two and both had an eight-foot putt for birdie. After Vilneff pushed his right, Bunker stepped up and drained his to win his second straight and fourth Ontario Match Play title.
“I knew the weather was going to be bad today and the bugs, but you just have to try and focus the best you can,” said Bunker about the conditions. “It is a long week and you need to be prepared to play lots of holes if you go far. I just got fortunate that things went my way. I got some good breaks and that’s what you need to make it to the final match.”
Bunker added that he wasn’t thinking about repeating as champion. “I wasn’t thinking too much about last year or repeating. It was more about how each match went. How I played each hole and how I was going to play the next.”
The road to the finals, for Bunker, included wins over Connor Denning (6&5), Cole Kent (3&2), Jordan Gregoris (2&1), Raymond Oh (1up) and Jeff Crowe (4&3). As for Vilneff he defeated Arjun Walia (6&4), Greg Mullins (7&5), Charles Corner (3&2), Nicholas Ross (1up) and Luke Moser (5&3).
Bunker will now take the momentum from this win and turn his attention to the U.S. Senior Open, June 25-28, in Sacramento, California after he qualified on June 1.
About the Ontario Men’s Match Play Championship
Established in 1986, the Ontario Men’s Match Play Championship is contested annually and features 64 of Ontario’s best amateur golfers that have qualified through one of five qualifying tournaments held earlier this season, or who have gained an exemption into the event. Notable former champions include Ontario Golf Hall of Fame member Ian Leggatt, David Hearn and David Byrne.
The Golf Association of Ontario would like to thank Clublink and The Lake Joseph Club for their continued support of the Ontario Men’s Match Play Championship.