OLIVER, British Columbia (July 15, 2015) — Point Grey Golf & Country Club's Stu Macdonald made an eagle on his final shot of the day en route to a (-6) round of 66 that has him leading the 113th BC Amateur at Fairview Mountain with a (-9) 135 score.
Macdonald overhauled first-round co-leader Jared du Toit, who had a second consecutive day of (-4) 68 to sit at (-8) 136.
Macdonald had 115 yards to go on the par-4 9th and hit his 54-degree wedge shot to 5 feet and then watched it roll into the cup for a closing eagle. "That was a great way to end the round," said the Purdue Boilermaker senior. "It was a pretty solid day for me, but I still think I left a couple out there."
Macdonald, starting on the 10th hole, made three birdies on his front nine and one bogey and then added two more birdies before his closing eagle. "I think there's only four holes out there where par is a decent score," said Macdonald. "The rest, you have a chance to make a good number on if you hit the right shot and putt the ball well."
Macdonald has an ambitious summer ahead. Not only is he flying out east to play the Monday qualifier for the RBC Canadian Open next week, he'll also try to Monday qualify for the PGA Tour Canada stop in Calgary and then it's off to the Canadian Amateur and the U.S. Amateur before he heads right back to Purdue, where, as the only returning senior, he'll be expected to lead the young squad.
Du Toit started on the back 9 and made six birdies and two bogeys, rounding the turn at (-4) 32. But after narrowly avoiding disaster by finding his wayward drive on the second, du Toit made bogey and couldn't get anything going until a birdie on the par-5 8th hole.
"I'm happy with the score, but I couldn't get anything going in my last nine holes," said du Toit. "I said before the tournament that I'd take even par on everything but the par-5s and if I can make birdies there, I'd be happy. I'm at 8 so that's a good score going into the last two rounds."
Du Toit was actually more happy for his brother Russell, who made the cut on the number. The brothers were finishing at the same time, Jared on 9 and Russell on 18, and Jared was happy that he would have to look for someone else to caddy for him for the final two rounds.
"I've played lots of rounds with Stu and I'm looking forward to playing with him tomorrow," said du Toit. "He's a great player and that's a good round he shot today."
Macdonald's playing partner, Brayden Eriksen of Pheasant Glen GR, also shot (-6) 66, but his came about because of nine birdies and only three bogeys. Eriksen now sits in third place, at (-4) 140 and will play in the final group on Thursday.
"I got on a really good run of birdies, from 15 to 18, where I made four in a row," said Eriksen. "I think the biggest break for me is on 16, where I short-sided myself and hit a flop shot just trying to get it close and it went in for a birdie. That gave me a boost and I made a couple more on 17 and 18."
Eriksen said he was impressed with how well Macdonald played, as well as their third, first-round co-leader Conner Kozak. "Stewie played great both days and Conner played well, but he didn't putt like he did (the first day)," said Eriksen. "It was a good group and I hope to play with them again."
As for Kozak, who finished with a (+3) 75 to sit at (-1) 143, eight strokes behind, he was happy to have a front row seat for the fireworks. "They were lights out today," said Kozak. "Brayden was making birdies everywhere and Stu, well, you heard the roar when he holed out on 9. I used up all my putts yesterday and I just couldn't get the ball in the hole today."
Troy Bulmer of Predator Ridge also had a very good round, making seven birdies and only two bogeys en route to a (-5) round of 67 that moves him to (-2) 142 and seven strokes behind Macdonald. "This is my first BC Am and it's good because I had to play through the supplemental to get into the field," said Bulmer, who's originally from Saskatchewan. "I made my birdies today and I'm getting a better feel for the greens."
In other notable news, Shaughnessy's Kamyar Yamini got a big roar on the third hole when he made an ace from 152 yards with a 9-iron. "It was a knock-down 9 and it was actually my second ace in the last month," said the UBC-bound student. "I made one during the practice round at Black Mountain for the high school championships and it was my third one overall."
Yamini ended up shooting his second consecutive even-par round and sits nine strokes behind Macdonald. "This is my first BC Am and I've made the cut so I'll just go out tomorrow and try to go low. It's out there."
The cut to top 70 and ties came at (+7) 151 with 79 golfers making the cut. Marine Drive's Doug Roxburgh shot a (+6) round of 78 to finish at (+8) 152 and missed the cut for only the second time in the 49 BC Amateurs he's competed in. "I just didn't play well enough," said Roxburgh.
Newly crowned BC Junior champion Jake Scarrow had a big bounce-back round of (-4) 68 after shooting (+1) 73 during the first round. At (-3) 141, Scarrow is only six back, a margin he knows well, as he trailed Ziggy Nathu by that many strokes in Osoyoos last week with only 17 holes to go. Scarrow erased that margin in just 10 holes and ended up winning by two strokes.
"Today was about getting myself back into a position where I could move up in the last two rounds," said the Lab@Northview golfer who's going to the University of Idaho next month. "I need to get a good start tomorrow, see if I can make some birdies and post a score. You can go low here, especially if the wind is down."
Defending champion Jordan Lu of Marine Drive had his second straight (-1) round of 71 and sits at (-2) 142, seven strokes behind. "I couldn't get anything going these two days," said the University of Washington sophomore. "I would miss fairways, get flyer lies and then have to work hard to two-putt. I didn't have many birdie opportunities. I grinded both days."
The third round of the 113th BC Amateur at Fairview Mountain begins at 7:30 a.m. on Thursday, with players going off both the 1st and 10th tees.