July 23-24, 2018
Vernon, BC. (July 25, 2018) – The Boston Pizza presented-Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour continued its Okanagan Valley swing in British Columbia on July 23 and 24, hosting the latest MJT Ford Series event at the picturesque Predator Ridge Golf Resort in Vernon. Playing a very difficult par 71 Predator course, the packed field of 91 golfers from BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Florida and Australia included the largest group of Collegiate players so far this season, where Marcus Brown was on fire with scorching hot scores of 66-67.
Brown, 22, of Surrey, BC and a Senior at Simon Fraser University, performed from the first tee to the last green to repeat as MJT Collegiate Champion at this tournament. “In the 18th fairway I just did a checklist of all seven swing thoughts in my backswing,” said Brown. “This is my favourite course – best place on earth. It’s awesome to have a collegiate division and its always a fun experience with the MJT.” His score of 133 totalled nine under par, a 14 stroke victory over Kurtis Fontinha, 22, of Penticton, BC, who is a Sophomore at the University of Northern Michigan. Fontinha was remarkable with rock solid rounds of 71, 76 (147) to earn runner-up honours, and MJT veteran Bethany Ma, 20, of Vancouver, shot 80, 82 (162) to place low overall among the Collegiate women in the field.
Edmonton, AB’s Kaiden Nicholson, 17, held on to his first round lead and took the MJT Junior Boys title with solid scores of 71, 75 (146), enough for a three stroke victory over Shiv Kaura, 17, of Davenport, FL (76, 73=149).
The MJT Juvenile Boys title went to Nicholas Jenner, 16, of Castlegar, BC, who closed out Matthew Pilgrim, 16, of West Vancouver, with a strong final round (74, 71=145). Pilgrim finished at 74, 78 (152).
Ryan Lee, 14, of Burnaby, BC, won the MJT Bantam Boys title by four strokes after firing back-to-back rounds of 75 for a 150 total score in the 19-player strong division. Tied for second at 154 were Christian Hansen, 14, of Okotoks, AB (77, 77) and Arlen Des Champ, 14, of Prince Rupert, BC (73, 81).
Top finisher for the second straight BC event in the MJT Peewee Boys division was Ryan Vest, 12, of Vernon, who finished the tournament at five over par after tallying impressive rounds of 70, 76 (146). Vest credited his strong opening round of one-under par, filled with a total of five birdies on the difficult layout, for what drove him to victory again this week. There was a tie for second place between Joshua Ince, 12, of New Westminster, BC (79, 79 = 158) and Tate Bruggeman, 11, of Edmonton, AB (77, 81=158).
Prince George, BC’s Natasha Kozlowski, 16, captured the MJT Girls 15-18 Hoselton trophy by three strokes after shooting 74, 87 (161). Kozlowski said she was pleased with her comeback hole on 14, as the first day she put her tee shot in the water. “I then put an eight iron to about 20 feet just off the back of the green and drained the put to save a bogey,” she finished. Runner-up was local Kendra Jones-Munk, 16, of Vernon, BC, who shot 86, 78 (164).
A tightly contested MJT Girls 15U division saw Annalise Stolzenberg, 12, of Langley, BC, shoot 85, 80 (165) to edge out both Jessica Ng, 14, of Vancouver, BC (82, 84) and Jayla Kucy, 12, of Camrose, AB (81, 85), who tied for second at 166. “My best hole was number 15 because I took a risk and it definitely paid off as I got an eagle!” Stolzenberg said of her one-stroke victory. “I have improved so much since the past day, and year, and I feel so accomplished and proud of myself for achieving my personal best. It’s paying off in such a great way!”
The 36 hole competition was preceded by one of the MJT and Ford Canada’s initiatives to grow the game of golf with the Watkin Motors Ford Go Golf! Free Junior Clinic. Over 50 kids aged 6 to 12 came out to Predator Ridge on Sunday, July 22, to participate in activities to introduce them to the FUNdamentals of golf.
Special for the MJT Ford Series’ Okanagan Swing were draw prizes of Yardzfordayz clothing from MJT player and aspiring entrepreneur, Hunter Penalva. For more information and to check out the line, please click here, and for overall tournament highlights please visit the website to view winners of the PLYR Long Drive, PLYR Closest-to-the-Pin and MJT Comeback Awards.
The MJT’s BC schedule now shifts back to the Lower Mainland for the major-ranked MJT Odlum Brown Classic – PGA of BC Junior Championship at Northview Golf and Country Club in Surrey, August 7 to 9. The Tour will then visit beautiful Whistler for the MJT Whistler Junior Championship at Whistler Golf Club, August 13 and 14. For more information or to register, please visit www.maplejt.com or call 1-877-859-4653.
About Ford: Ford of Canada employs over 23,000 talented individuals in the fields of finance, sales and marketing, information technology, manufacturing and engineering, and human resources. This diverse workforce is responsible for the manufacturing and assembly operations that bring 320,000 vehicles and 425,000 engines to market. At Ford we are proud to be Canada’s longest-established automaker and remain committed to building a strong future in Canada. For more information on MJT Premier Partner, Ford Canada, please see www.ford.ca.
About the MJT: The non-profit Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour presented by Boston Pizza is Canada’s number one-played Junior Golf Tour as well as the only national junior tour run exclusively by PGA of Canada Professionals and the ‘Road to College Golf’ in Canada. The organization is presented nationally by Boston Pizza and supported by valued Premier, Tournament and Product Partners. The MJT hosts more than 70 events across Canada, including free Ford Go Golf Junior Clinics, the MJT Mini Tour for 7-12 year olds, the Collegiate Tour for 19-23 year olds, and multi-day events for competitive players aged 11 to 18, which are also qualifiers for international competitions. The program offers annual awards, scholarships, and frequent player incentives to help reward player's performance and participation throughout each season. MJT alumni include many Professional Tour players and PGA of Canada Professionals, as well as Canadian Amateur, National and Provincial Junior Champions. The MJT aims to develop champions, in golf and in life, promoting the game from grassroots through to provincial, national, university and professional level. For more information on the Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour, please visit www.maplejt.com