June 28-29, 2021
Chester, NS – (June 30, 2021) – After a long delay to the start of Canada’s number-one played Junior Golf Tour in the region due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour officially launched its 2021 schedule with the MJT Atlantic Canada Season Opener presented by Bell Aliant at Chester Golf Club in Chester, NS, June 28 and 29. Following strict COVID-19 health and safety protocols, players competed for titles in six divisions, vying for valuable points on the MJT Order of Merit presented by RBC.
“Chester Golf Club was a wonderful host, stepping in to take on the event,” commented MJT Tournament Director and PGA Professional, Andrew Noseworthy. “It was a great test for the kids for the start to their competitive season, and with a condensed schedule all the events will be important for the MJT’s Order of Merit.”
Jake Smith, 18, of Dartmouth, NS, didn’t miss a beat through the off-season, picking up his winning ways once again in the MJT Junior Boys Division. The 2020 MJT Atlantic Canada Order of Merit winner fired 74 and 73 (147) to win the division title and low overall score of the competition. “It was a fun tournament,” commented Smith. “The course was in great shape, and I played pretty consistently.” There was a tie for runner-up spot in the division between Keonhwi Kim, 18, of Bedford, NS, (79, 74=153) and 17-year-old Dimitri Mihelakos, of Halifax, NS, (75-78=153).
MJT veteran champion Simon Mullen, 15, of Truro, NS, continued his strong past streak on the MJT with another win in the MJT Juvenile Boys Division. Mullen shot 76 and 73 (149), making three birdies during the second round and playing his last five holes of the tournament at one-under par. Hudson Forward, 15, of Enfield, NS, recorded rounds of 79 and 77 (156) to take home second place.
Entering the MJT winner’s circle for the first time in the Girls U15 Division was 14-year-old Olivia Seaman. The Kentville, NS, player carded 79 and 78 (157) to pick up her first ever MJT title after finishing runner-up in both of her previous starts last season. “I am grateful and happy to win my division title,” commented Seaman. “I’m happy to see that all the hard work paid off.”
Abbey Baker, 16, of Halifax, NS, earned her first 2021 MJT victory in the Girls 15-19 Division at Chester Golf Club. The MJT veteran champion continued her dominance at the top of the MJT leaderboards with scores of 83 and 75 (158), earning her fifth victory in five consecutive starts.
The MJT Bantam Boys Division saw 13-year-old Blake Wilson take home the title by two shots. The Windsor Junction, NS, resident fired rounds of 84 and 75 (159) to win his first career MJT title. Runner-up was Zachary Gaudet, 14, of Truro, NS, who shot scores of 80 and 81 (161).
Winning the MJT Peewee Boys title by countback was 11-year-old Carter Lavigne, of Moncton, NB. Lavigne, who is playing on his second season on the MJT, fired rounds of 84 and 86 (170) to tie with 11-year-old Jacob Seaman, of Kentville, NS, who finished 82 and 88 (170), but had to settle for runner-up based on second day scores. Grady Cohen, 12, of New Glasgow, NS, shot 83 and 89 (172) to place third.
The MJT Booster Juice Bounceback awards for most improved score from round two over round one were Allie Burns, Abbey Baker, Elliott Bishop, Vincent Armstrong, Nathanial Arseneau, and Owen Canavan. Full results can be viewed here.
The MJT next heads to Falmouth, NS, on July 19 and 20, for the MJT Bell Aliant Series at Avon Valley Golf & Country Club where a new Mini Tour division for 12U players will be added to the field on July 19 only. Registration is still open and details can be found at www.maplejt.com.
About Bell: Bell Aliant provides customers in New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island with innovative information, communication and technology services including voice, data, Internet, video and value-added business solutions such as data security and cloud computing services; including Fibe™ TV and Internet, Bell Satellite TV, and Home Phone. Click here for more information.
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.