Mississauga, Ont. (RCGA, August 17, 2006) -– The 156-player field is now down to the final two as Calgary’s Todd Halpen and defending champion Richard Scott of Kingsville, Ont. are set to meet in the 36-hole final match of the 102nd playing of the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship, conducted by the Royal Canadian Golf Association (RCGA).
With their birth in the Canadian Amateur final secured, both Scott and Halpen have earned exemptions into the 2006 Canadian Open, September 4-10 at the Hamilton Golf and Country Club.
Scott’s road to the final saw him face Calgary’s Ryan Yip in one afternoon semi-final match up. Yip, the long-hitting no. 34 seed had become the talk of Mississaugua as round by round he knocked off many of the championship’s premier players. In the end, The two-time defending champion proved too much to handle as Scott held on for a hard-fought 1-UP victory.
In his morning quarterfinal match, Scott, a member of Canada’s National Amateur team, was pushed to the limit before knocking off 2006 Canadian Junior champion Nick Taylor of Abbottsford, B.C on the 19th hole. His quarterfinal win marked the second consecutive year that Scott has ousted Canada’s national Junior champion, having beat out Mitchell Fox of Okotoks, Alta. in the semi-finals last year.
Yip’s run as giant killer ended Thursday afternoon after a run that saw him knock off Canadian National Amateur team member Andrew Parr of London, Ont., world-ranked American Chris Kirk of Georgia and Australian Ashley Hall, the no. 3 match play seed.
After struggling to find his game in qualifying medal play, Scott, the no. 31 seed has settled into the match-play grove that guided him to a pair of Canadian Amateur titles in the past three years.
“It’s exciting to be in the position to do something so special,” said the 23-year old at the thought of winning his third career Amateur title. “I love match play and it just seemed like with every round of matches my swing just felt better and better. My goal tomorrow is to head in, concentrate on the things that have been successful for me so far and just go after it one hole at a time.”
Set to play in his fourth career Canadian Open, Scott’s goal this time around is simple.
“I’m making the cut this year. This is my fourth one and I’m going to make it happen.”
Halpen’s road to the final saw him post an impressive 3&1 semi-final victory over National Amateur Team player Graham DeLaet of Weyburn, Sask. DeLaet, the no. 4 seed had been one of the championship’s most dominant players before falling to Halpen, who gave much of the credit for the victory to his caddy Kris Wasylowich.
“I couldn’t have done this without Kris,” said Halpen about Wasylowich, the event’s co-medalist and no. 2 match play seed. “We had so many laughs out there and whenever I started to struggle or doubt myself, he would keep telling me how good I was doing and how I would pull it through.”
Though he heads into Friday’s final match with a great deal of respect for his opponent, Halpen wouldn’t have wanted to face anyone but Scott in the final for the prestigious Earl Grey Cup.
“He’s a two-time champion and the guy to beat coming in here,” added Halpen. “It’s only right that you should have to face him for the title so I’m looking forward to it.”
Halpen and Wasylowich have already tasted victory this week as they teamed with Yip and Calgary’s James Love to help Alberta defend its Willingdon Cup Inter-provincial team title.
2006 is shaping up to be a career-season for Halpen as earlier this year he helped guide the University of Victoria to its third Canadian University/College Championship in the past four years.
Scott will be on somewhat familiar ground when he challenges the PGA Tour’s best this September as he played in the 2003 Canadian Open at the historic Hamilton layout following his Amateur victory that year.
The 36-hole final match for the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship is set for 8:00 am at the historic Mississaugua Golf and Country Club.
The 2006 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship helps to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the Mississaugua Golf and Country Club. Throughout its history, the club has proven itself among the most championship worthy layouts in all of Canada.
Admission to see Canada’s top amateur players battle for the national title at Mississaugua Golf and Country Club is free of charge.
The following is the 36-hole final match for Friday, August 18 at the 2006 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.
(8) Todd Halpen, Calgary, AB VS Richard Scott, Kingsville, ON (31)
The following are semi-final afternoon match results for Thursday, August 17 at the 2006 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.
(8) Todd Halpen, Calgary, AB Def. 3&1 Graham DeLaet, Weyburn, SK (4)
(31) Richard Scott, Kingsville, ON Def. 1-UP Ryan Yip, Calgary, AB (43)
The following are quarterfinal morning match results for Thursday, August 17 at the 2006 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.
(8) Todd Halpen, Calgary, AB Def. 3&2 Kevin Crozier, Cornwall, PE (49)
(43) Ryan Yip, Calgary, AB Def. 5&3 Ashley Hall, Melbourne, Victoria, AL (3)
(4) Graham DeLaet, Weyburn, SK Def. 1-UP Kevin Blue, Don Mills, ON (12)
(31) Richard Scott, Kingsville, ON Def. 19th Hole Nick Taylor, Abbotsford, BC (23)
Live scoring and match play seedings for the 2006 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship are available on-line at www.rcga.org.
As part of the RCGA’s Pathway to Champions, the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship will also see a pair of exemptions earned into the 2006 Canadian Open. Both the champion and runner-up will compete against the PGA Tour’s finest September 4-10 when Canada’s national Open championship marks its much-anticipated return to the Hamilton Golf and Country Club.
The championship consists of both stroke and match play. The stroke-play portion of the event will be played over 36 holes. The field will be reduced to 64 players after 36 holes qualifying for the match play portion of the championship with the 36-hole final match set for Friday, August 18.
For the complete match play tree, click on the tournament link above.