Abbotsford – The University of the Fraser Valley men’s golf team backed up its stellar start at the Canadian University/College Championship with an even better second round on Wednesday at Chilliwack Golf Club.
Coming off a scorching debut Tuesday which saw them post a collective score of 10 under par – the only team to go under par as a group all day – the tournament host Cascades followed with an 11-under effort in Round 2. It wasn’t the best score of the day – that honour went to the UBC Thunderbirds (-14), who moved up two spots to second place. But nevertheless, the UFV squad maintains a double-digit lead heading into the third of four rounds on Thursday. Their score of -21 through 36 holes leaves them a dozen strokes clear of UBC (-9), and the rest of the top five consists of the Victoria Vikes (-3), Laval Rouge et Or (E) and Montreal Carabins (+5).
The top of the men’s individual leaderboard, likewise, is laden with Cascades. Zach Olson continues to lead the men’s individual race – the Strathmore, Alta. product fired a steady three-under 69, with four birdies against just one bogey. He’s at -7 for the tournament. Right behind him in solo second place is teammate Daniel Campbell, who bounced back from a bogey-double bogey start on his first two holes to finish -3 on the day and get to -6 overall. Halen Davis also shot a 69 and is tied for third at -5 with UBC’s Andrew Harrison and Laval’s Baptiste Mory.
UFV rookie Kyle Claggett (71-70) has also carved out a spot in the top 10 – he’s tied for ninth at -3 for the tourney. Connor O’Dell (77-73) had a strong finish to his round, and is tied for 53rd at +6.
“They’re playing the way we expected them to play,” Cascades head coach Chris Bertram said of the men’s team. “That’s sort of been our pattern the last couple weeks – those are the scores we’ve been putting up (in practice), and it’s nice to see them do it in competition.
“We had a really good start yesterday and played well in tough conditions, and we kept the momentum going today. And as a result, we’re in a really good position at the halfway point.”
Olson described his round as “pretty smooth.”
“I left a few out there,” he noted. “I missed a couple opportunities with the putter, just kind of shoved a couple that I should have made. But I was steady all day . . . I pretty much kept it in play all day long.”
The Cascades women’s team, meanwhile, mounted a second-round rally, surging to the brink of podium position at the midway point of the tournament. Their combined score of +7 was the best of the day, allowing them to move from fifth to fourth overall at +27. UBC (+13), Montreal (+21) and Victoria (+26) comprise the top three.
Maddie Kapchinsky led the charge – her one-under 71 tied UBC’s Avril Li for the low round of the day, and she’s currently tied for eighth at +6. Teammate Emery Bardock is also in the top 10, sitting at +7 for the tournament after firing a 74 on Wednesday. Hannah Dirksen is tied for 23rd at +14. After a slow start to her round, going +6 over her first nine holes, the CCAA All-Canadian played her second nine at even par.
The Thunderbirds’ Li (-1) leads the individual women’s competition, with a four-stroke cushion on Sarah Dunning (+3) of the Guelph Gryphons.
“It wasn’t the start the ladies had been hoping for yesterday, but we bounced back today and showed what we’re capable of,” Bertram said. “It’s nice to see us fire our way back into the mix and put up the low team score of the day.”