Belle makes hole-in-one, leads at British Columbia Amateur
by British Columbia Golf Association

NORTH VANCOUVER, Canada (July 15, 2014) -- Two competitors recorded holes-in-one on Tuesday at the 112th British Columbia Amateur Championship presented by Blue Shore Financial at Seymour Golf and Country Club.Both Michael Belle and Alex Francois celebrated an ace, on number 11 and number eight, respectively, on the 6,405-yard par-71 course on the first day of competition.

Belle, 22, co-leads the field with Spencer Weiss with a 2-under 69 after one round. The SFU senior recorded his third-ever hole-in-one, and the first of the Championship, on number 11, a par-3 set at 149 yards.

“I was just trying to play conservatively today. The course is in great shape and the greens are a lot faster than they were in the practice round, a lot firmer, but you can post a good number if you play smart,” said Belle following his round.

The Burnaby native had another standout year at SFU with the ever-improving SFU Clan and looks to improve on his T51 finish at the BC Amateur last year.

Weiss, of Sammamish, Washington co-leads the Championship with Belle and shot an impressive four birdies out. The 18-year-old qualified on Sunday at the supplemental qualifier at Kings Links by the Sea shooting a one-over-par 73. He recently competed in the prestigious Sahalee Players Championship at his home course, competing with some of the best amateur golfers from around the world.

Francois claimed the second hole-in-one of the Championship shortly after Belle; on number eight, a 159-yard par 3, with an eight iron. He began his round with back-to-back birdies.

Francois finished T4 at the British Columbia Golf Junior Boys’ Championship last week at Meadow Gardens and has the opportunity to repeat his performance.

“I feel like it’s a little bit of a different expectation that everyone has for me at this event. It’s an amateur event and there are all kinds of accomplished players in this field. I’m just going to play my own game and see how far I get,” said Francois, who was right back out on the practice green after his impressive first round, working specifically on short putts inside five feet.

The 16-year-old currently sits in a four-way tie at second with Adam Svensson, Kevin Carrigan and Dylan Bell at -1.

Carrigan and Svensson, who both had top three finishes in last year’s BC Amateur Championship, bogeyed twice and birdied three times in order to begin day two just a single stroke back of the leaders. Bell’s scorecard was highlighted by five birdies to pull him to within a shot of the lead; he was already two-under at the turn but ran into some trouble bogeying both numbers 10 and 16 and double bogeying on 15.

Zone Team Competition

Zone Four leads the Zone Team Competition, they are even at 213 after 18 holes. Four-person zone teams were selected prior to competition, the low three of four scores make up the team total for the day. The competition is conducted over 36 holes. Zone Four, comprised of Michael Belle, Roy Kang, Matthew Steger and Nicholas Gagne combined for three eagles and four birdies.

Best-ball Competition

Michael Belle and Kevin Vigna co-lead the best-ball competition with a 6-under-par 65 highlighted by four birdies and an eagle. Tied with the pair for first are junior golfers Alex Francois and Roy Kang with only a single bogey disrupting their scorecard after the first round. Four teams are tied for third just two strokes back of the leaders.

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