Jake DuVall holds The Bostock Trophy aloft after his playoff win
(BC Golf photo)
SURREY, B.C., CANADA (July 21, 2017) - By Brad Ziemer, British Columbia Golf
It may have been the biggest fist-pump in the 115-year history of the B.C. Amateur Championship.
Victoria’s Jake DuVall was more than a little excited when he rolled in a 12-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff to beat Jacob Koppenberg of Bellingham at Morgan Creek Golf Course in Surrey.
“This is huge,” an elated DuVall said. “I have never really won any big tournament anywhere near the stature of this one. It kind of gives me belief going forward into golf, thinking about turning pro, that I can do it in pressure situations and I am really excited.”
The 23-year-old DuVall exchanged chest-bumps with several of his Victoria-area buddies as he walked off the green to accept the historic Bostock Trophy. DuVall won the playoff after missing a five-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole to win the championship.
“I have never been that nervous in my life,” DuVall said of that missed putt. “I have never been in a situation like that. I played that hole perfectly. But I knew even if I missed it we would be playing more, so that helped.”
DuVall, who plays out of Uplands Golf Club, and Koppenberg both finished at 12-under par. DuVall closed with a three-under 69 on Friday, while Koppenberg shot a 70. Koppenberg, a 30-year-old member of Bellingham Golf Club who has a spot in next month’s U.S. Amateur Championship, looked like he was going to run away with the tournament on the front nine.
He birdied four of his first seven holes to move to 14-under and had a four-shot lead. But things changed on the back nine, where he made bogeys on the 10th, 13th and 15th holes. “I hit a chip on 10 that hit a sprinkler head and it kicked straight right,” Koppenberg said.
“On 13 I hit a good shot in and left myself an impossible chip and on 15 I hit a good shot in and it ran a foot off the green into someone’s footprint. It could have gone one way or the other. If I could have got one break it may have saved me a shot, but that is just how it goes. It’s golf.”
Koppenberg had a 20-foot look for birdie on the playoff hole, but it just missed on the low side. He had a feeling that DuVall would make his putt. “Once I missed, I just had a feeling,” he said. DuVall said he wasn’t nearly as nervous the second time around on 18. “It was crazy how much less nervous I was on that last one on the playoff than I was for the one in regulation,” he said.
DuVall played his collegiate golf at Southwest Oklahoma State University and is taking a year to work on his golf. “I am kind of contemplating whether I should turn pro this fall or just stay amateur and play the Mackenzie Tour Q-school next spring as an amateur. I will probably do that.”
DuVall and Koppenberg finished one shot ahead of Victoria’s Kevin Carrigan, who shot a five-under 67 to move to 11-under. It was the second time Carrigan has finished one shot back at a B.C. Amateur. “I was super happy with the way I played today,” said Carrigan, last year’s B.C. Mid-Amateur champion. “I stayed in it the whole way and made lots of birdies. I was doing everything well. I just came up a little short. I was very proud of myself and how I played all week. I honestly didn’t think I was coming here to win so it is a delightful surprise.”
As a consolation prize, Carrigan will join DuVall and Richmond’s Chris Crisologo on B.C.’s Willingdon Cup team at next month’s Canadian Amateur Championship in Toronto. “This is the fifth time I have qualified for the Willingdon Cup team,” said Carrigan, who has won three Canadian Mid-Amateur championships. “And that means a lot because I know how important it is in the history of B.C. golf. It's a 100-year-old event, we measure good players in the province based on how many Willingdon Cups they have played in.”
Crisologo, who is about to begin his senior year at Simon Fraser University, sunk a 12-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole to grab the final Willingdon Cup spot. He finished solo fourth at eight-under par after shooting a two-under 70 on Friday. “I had an idea I needed to make that putt,” Crisologo said. “I haven’t been on a Willingdon Cup team so that was obviously one of my goals coming into the tournament. So it means a lot for sure.”
Zach Anderson of Nanaimo finished tied for fifth at seven-under with 13-year-old Jeevan Sihota of Victoria. Anderson fired a six-under 66, the low round of the tournament, on Friday, Sihota closed with an even-par 72.
CHIP SHOTS: Vancouver’s Doug Roxburgh finished tied for 54th at 14-over after shooting a seven-over 79 on Friday. . .Defending champion Nolan Thoroughgood of Victoria closed with a four-under 68 and finished 17th at one-over par. . . Next year’s B.C. Amateur will be held Rivershore Golf Links in Kamloops. . . Sihota and Tristan Mandur of Mill Bay won the two-man best-ball competition with a four-round score of 29-under.
ABOUT THE British Columbia Amateur
72 hole stroke play championship with a cut
36 holes. No gender or age restriction. Players must
qualify through their zone, be previously exempt or
play in the Supplemental Qualifier.
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