Courtenay golfers Abigail Rigsby had sole possession of second place in the girls division and Matthew Irvine had a share of seventh in the boys flight after the first round Tuesday at the B.C. Golf juvenile (16 and under) championships at Crown Isle.
Play continues Wednesday and Thursday.
Rigsby shot a three-over par 75, six shots back of Burnaby’s Sumie Francois, 13, whose brother Alex, 15, had a share of the lead in the boys division with a two-under par 70.
Megan Ratcliffe, Bowser and McKenna Fox, Courtenay both fired opening rounds of 84.
Irvine kicked off the tournament with a par 72, including six birdies. Fellow Crown Isle golfers Logan Yanick shot 77 and Tyson Slater 80.
Defending his 2012 title against a hungry field of 102 challengers is Henry Lee, 15, of Coquitlam. Leaderboard favourites also include Coldstream’s Austin Bosquet, 16, Parksville’s Santiago Bouyra, 16, 2011 bantam boys champion A.J. Ewart, 14, of Coquitlam, Francois and recent PNGA junior standout Andrew Funk, 16, of Sidney.
Others to watch as potential Gerry Walker Memorial trophy holders are
Vancouver’s Trevor Yu, who shared the lead with Francois, and Diego San Pedro of Richmond, who was crowned an Eddie Hogan Cup Team B.C. champion this month.
In the girls championship, Janet Zhang is not defending her 2012 title, leaving the way for the likes of 16-year-old Keanna Mason of Maple Ridge, Team Canada Development Squad member Naomi Ko, 16, of Victoria, Francois and Halfmoon Bay’s Avery Struck, 16.
Both championships are 54-hole stroke play competitions. The boys tournament features a cut to the low 60 players and ties following 36 holes. Due to a limited field, no cut will occur after 36-holes for the girls. During rounds one and two, zone and club team competitions are being contested.
The girls’ championship was first contested in 2005 while the first boys’ tourney was 1974. Since then a plethora of champions have emerged victorious including Jim Rutledge in 1976.
Following the passing of Gerry Walker, a dedicated volunteer of B.C. Golf, the juvenile boys trophy was named in his honour thanks to his tireless volunteer effort and unwavering passion for junior golf.
Spectators are encouraged to attend. The final round is Thursday.
For tee times and scoring results for the boys championship, click here.
For the girls’ side click here.
•Yanick was the top Islander at the Pacific Northwest Golf Association junior boys championship last week at Bear Mountain in Victoria. He made the semi-finals before losing in match play to Kevin Vigna of Coquitlam.
•Last weekend at the Crown Isle mens club championship, Irvine beat Yanick by one shot to win the tournament.