Frank Garber of Kirkland, Wash. shot a 3-under par 68 to take a two-stroke lead after the first round of stroke-play qualifying at the 59th Pacific Northwest Junior Boys’ Amateur Championship, being held at the Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort & Spa in Victoria, B.C.
Garber, playing in the first group of the day, had an astonishing six birdies in his round, including three of his last four holes, to jump in to the lead. The 2012 WSGA Junior Boys’ Player of the Year and AAA State High School Champion in Washington, Garber made the Round of 16 at last year’s Junior Boys’ Amateur.
Tied for second are Keaton Gudz of Victoria, B.C., Brent Chapin of Olympia, Wash. and Andrew Funk of Sidney, B.C., all finishing at 1-under par 70.
Kevin Vigna, the defending champion from Coquitlam, B.C., sits tied for 15th after a round of 73. Just yesterday Vigna took individual medalist honors at the 45th Hogan Cup Team Matches, held at Portland’s Riverside Golf and Country Club, in leading Team BC to the team title in the team match competition.
Today’s round was held on the resort’s Valley course, while tomorrow’s second round of stroke-play qualifying will be conducted on the resort’s Mountain course. The first tee time tomorrow is 7:30 a.m. Flights and seeds into the match-play portion of the championship will be determined after tomorrow’s second round. The Championship Flight will consist of the 32 lowest scores. Match play will be single elimination 18-hole matches, with the exception of the Final match of the Championship Flight, which will be 36 holes.
The championship is being conducted by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA). This is one of 16 regional championships conducted annually by the PNGA.
The rich history of the PNGA Junior Boys’ Amateur Championship has included past champions World Golf Hall of Fame member Fred Couples, Web.com Tour player Alex Prugh, and Andrew Yun, who earlier this summer won the prestigious Sahalee Players Championship. When asked for his advice to junior golfers, Couples once said, “To any youngster, I would say hang in there. You are playing the toughest sport there is. The highs and lows of golf are so great because it is an individual sport. Let the good times roll with the bad times.”
Both courses at The Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort & Spa – the Valley and the Mountain – were designed by Nicklaus Design.