B.C. Golf Notes: Tough Times For Canadians On Mackenzie Tour; Crisologo Looks To Make Amends At U.S. Amateur

Richmond's Chris Crisologo, Shown Here At The B.C. Amateur At Morgan Creek Last Month, Is In The Field At The U.S. Amateur This Week At Riviera GC In Los Angeles - Image Credit Jurgen Kaminski (JKam Photos)/British Columbia Golf

By Brad Ziemer, British Columbia Golf

A tie for second on Sunday by veteran Wes Heffernan of Calgary notwithstanding, it has been a tough year for Canadians on the Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada circuit.

Eight events into the 12-tournament season, Kimberley’s Jared du Toit is the top Canadian on the Mackenzie Tour’s money list. And he’s 22nd.

That’s right, there’s not a single Canadian inside the top 20. To this point anyway, it’s the worst year for Canadians since the PGA TOUR started running what used to be the Canadian Tour in 2013.

In its inaugural season, Mackenzie Hughes of Dundas, Ont., and Riley Wheeldon of Comox finished 1-2. In 2014, Vancouver’s Ryan Williams just missed the coveted top five by finishing sixth on the Order of Merit. In 2015 Taylor Pendrith of Richmond Hill, Ont., was third and last year Langley’s Adam Cornelson was fifth.

There’s still time, of course, for a Canadian or two to make a move, but it is running short. Heffernan, a multiple winner on the old Canadian Tour who now is a Calgary-based teacher, was playing on a sponsor’s exemption at the ATB Financial Classic. He finished one shot behind winner Chase Wright on Muncie, Ind.

The top British Columbian was West Vancouver’s Seann Harlingten, who finished tied for 11th. Vancouver’s Stuart Macdonald tied for 14th in his best finish in what has been a tough rookie season on the Mackenzie Tour. Macdonald had earned just $481 in his first seven events. He cashed a cheque for $2,713 on Sunday. 

Du Toit tied for 37th on Sunday and has made the cut in all seven of his Mackenzie Tour starts this year.

BOUNCE BACK: Richmond’s Chris Crisologo, who missed the cut at the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship, will try and make amends at this week’s U.S. Amateur Championship at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif.

Crisologo, who is about to begin his senior year at Simon Fraser University, is one of seven Canadians in the 312-player field. Lawren Rowe of Victoria is the only other British Columbian in the field.
Two rounds of stroke play will be played Monday and Tuesday at Riviera and Bel-Air Country Club before the top 64 players begin match play Wednesday at Riviera.

“Obviously my first U.S. Am didn’t go very well so I really wanted to get back this year, especially being at Riviera,” Crisologo said. “I hear a lot of amazing things about that golf course."

AMATEUR HOUR: Coquitlam’s A.J. Ewart was the top British Columbian at the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship at Toronto Golf Club. Ewart finished tied for 11th at one-under par. That was seven strokes behind winner Zach Bauchou of Forest, Va.

Other British Columbia finishers of note included Coquitlam’s Henry Lee (T22 at three-over), Jake Scarrow of Dewdney and Zaahidli Nathu of Richmond (T27 at four-over), Lawren Rowe and Jeevan Sihota, both of Victoria (T37 at seven-over), Kaleb Gorbahn of Smithers (T42 at eight-over) and Taylor Durham of Vancouver (T66 at 15-over).

MATCH GAME: Victoria’s Naomi Ko advanced to the match play portion of the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship at San Diego Country Club, but lost her first match in the Round of 64 to Sophia Schubert of Oak Ridge, Tenn. Ko shouldn’t feel too bad. Schubert advanced all the way to Sunday’s 36-hole final where she beat Switzerland’s Albane Valenzuela 6&5.

Fellow British Columbians Mary Parsons of Delta and Kathrine Chan of Richmond failed to advance to match play.

JIM DANDY: Once again, Victoria’s Jim Rutledge made it look easy. Rutledge won his fifth PGA of Canada Seniors title in Brantford, Ont., where he posted a 54-hole score of 12-under par to win by seven shots. He earned $9,000 for the win, which leaves him just two shy of the mark set by the legendary Moe Norman.

Hazelmere’s Phil Jonas tied for fifth at even par, while Doug Morgan of Richmond Country Club was eighth at two-over par.

ON THE MARK: Mark Spooner of West Vancouver finished tied for 37th place at the British Senior Amateur at Sunningdale Golf Club near London. Spooner finished the 54-hole event at 17-over par, 13 shots behind winner Bryan Hughes of Scotland. Fellow British Columbians Doug Roxburgh of Vancouver, John Gallacher of Burnaby and Lance Lundy of Pemberton missed the cut.

SEASON FINALE: This week’s Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, N.C., is the final regular-season event of the PGA TOUR season. The top 125 players on the FedEx Cup points list following the Wyndham will advance to the playoffs, which begin at next week’s Northern Trust tourney in Westbury, N.Y.

Abbotsford pros Adam Hadwin and Nick Taylor have locked up their playoff positions. Hadwin, who currently stands 13th on the FedEx Cup points list, is taking this week off after missing the cut at the PGA Championship. Taylor, who is 84th on the FedEx Cup points list, is in the Wyndham field after taking two weeks off.

ON THE WEB: Two regular-season events remain on the Web.com Tour, where Merritt’s Roger Sloan and Surrey’s Adam Svensson are both in position to challenge for 2018 PGA TOUR cards. The top 75 players on the money list after next week’s event in Portland will advance to the Web.com Tour finals where they will join players who finished between 126th and 200th on this year’s FedEx Cup points list on the PGA TOUR.

A total of 50 PGA TOUR cards will be handed out after the four-event finals, but players in the top 25 on the Web.com Tour money list at the conclusion of the regular season are guaranteed 25 of those cards.

Svensson, who tied for 27th this past weekend at the Web.com Tour’s Price Cutter Charity Championship in Springfield, Mo., stands 57th on the money list. Sloan, who took last week off, is 47th. Both players are in the field for this week’s News Sentinel Open in Knoxville, Tenn.