July 13-14, 2020
Thornton, ON – (July 15, 2020) - The MJT TaylorMade Junior Championship at Tangle Creek Golf Club in Thornton, Ontario, showcased some of the best junior talent from across the province this past Monday and Tuesday, where the Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour hosted a full field event for juniors on July 13 and 14. This event marked the first of two major events in Ontario on the national four-event TaylorMade Series, as TaylorMade Golf is a strong supporter of junior golf in Canada and a Premier Partner of the MJT. There were exciting finishes across the board in all six divisions, operating under new player health and safety protocols, and qualifying opportunities into both the Golf Ontario Junior Championships and the MJT National Championship presented by TaylorMade and adidas Golf at Morgan Creek Golf Club, BC, this October.
The MJT TaylorMade Junior Boys 17-19 Champion was 18-year old Bavake Sihota after the Caledon, ON-resident blazed his way around the course with eight birdies total to fire 72 and 70 (142). “At the end, I had to play my best,” commented Sihota, who made two clutch birdies in his final three holes to win by just a single shot. “I had practiced very hard during the week and was ready to compete at a high level on the MJT.” Saint Sulpice, QC-resident Hugo Denis, 17, fired rounds of 73 and 70 (143) to finish second.
Burlington, ON-native, Dougie Basadur, 14, had a share of the opening round lead with a round of 75 with three other players in a jam-packed Juvenile Boys Division. Basadur made his charge on day two carding four birdies including an 18th hole birdie to shoot 74 (149) to be crowned MJT TaylorMade Juvenile Boys 15-16 Champion by two shots. “I just stayed focused,” he commented. “I made my putts and played well.” Basadur picked up his first career MJT Junior title with his performance at Tangle Creek Golf Club.
The MJT TaylorMade Bantam Boys Champion was 12-year old Eric Zhao, of Toronto, ON, after he recorded scores of 76 and 70 (146) for his first 2020 MJT title. Zhao struggled to start the event playing his opening nine holes at three-over par but turned that around, making three birdies in his back nine to end his first day. Zhao kept that momentum right through day two making five more birdies and shooting three-under in his final nine holes. “I didn’t think about any of the other players in contention,” he stated. “I had no strategy going in, but to play my best.”
Eddie Gu, 10, of Aurora, ON, continued his success on the MJT winning his third consecutive 2020 title as the MJT TaylorMade Peewee Boys Champion. Gu fired scores of 76 and 71 (147) making seven birdies, six of which came on the front side of the golf course. “I try to play like I practice,” he remarked Gu, when asked what he thought was the key to winning the event. “It means that I am practicing the right things.”
The Girls 15-19 Division had nothing but excitement right down to the final stretch. With two shots separating the top four players after the first day, it was the 2019 MJT National Champion, Lydia St-Pierre, 15, of Levis, QC, that emerged on top as 2020 MJT TaylorMade Junior Girls Champion at Tangle Creek with scores of 76 and 72 (148). St-Pierre began the second day one shot behind the lead and made a statement out of the gate starting her second round eagle-birdie. Bending slightly mid-way through the second round, St-Pierre finished one-under in her final five holes to secure the Low Overall Girls score. “I had a lot of confidence in my tee shots,” commented St-Pierre. “My strategy was to place the ball well off the tee and hit many greens in regulation.” Finishing the division in a tie for second place were 14-year old Mia Wong, of Markham, ON, (77, 72 - 149) and 14-year old Alissa Xu, of Richmond Hill, ON (75, 74 - 149).
Picking up her second consecutive victory as MJT TaylorMade Girls U15 Champion was 11-year old Michelle Xing. The Richmond Hill golfer fired rounds of 80 and 84 (164) and has had a great start to her 2020 MJT campaign, finishing inside the top three in her first three events. “I tried not to play too aggressive,” commented Xing. “I didn’t hit my driver as much and put the ball in good positions.”
Amy Goddard of Toronto, ON and Ben Julie of Fenwick, ON, were the Booster Juice Bounceback Award winners for improving the most in score in round two over round one at the event.
Full results can be viewed here. The next MJT stop in Ontario stop will take place in Hamilton with the MJT ClubLink Series at Glendale Golf Club on July 18 and 19. For more details, please visit www.maplejt.com.
About TaylorMade Golf Company: Headquartered in Carlsbad, California, TaylorMade Golf is a leading manufacturer of high-performance golf equipment with industry-leading innovative products like SIM metalwoods, SIM irons, TP5/TP5X golf balls and Spider putters. A major force on the PGA TOUR, TaylorMade has an unrivaled athlete portfolio that includes Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day, Jon Rahm, Rickie Fowler, Matthew Wolff, Collin Morikawa, Nick Taylor and Michael Gligic.
About the MJT: The non-profit Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour 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 supported by valued Premier, Tournament and Product Partners. The MJT hosts close to 90 events across Canada, including free Ford Go Golf Junior Clinics, the MJT Mini Tour for 12U and multi-day events for competitive players aged 11-19 which also offer qualifiers for international tournaments. The program has annual awards, scholarships and incentives to help reward 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 the provincial, national, university and professional levels.