Two PNGA Players of the Year Selected to Team Canada
Eugene Wong and Christine Wong (no relation) chosen; Svensson on Development Squad
On December 7, Golf Canada announced the names of the athletes who have been selected for Team
Eugene Wong competed in this summer’s U.S. Amateur, held at Chambers Bay and The Home Course, just outside of Tacoma, Wash.
Christine Wong won this summer’s BC Women’s Amateur Championship.
Canada’s 2011 golf program. Eugene Wong of North Vancouver, BC, and Christine Wong of Richmond, BC, were both selected for the program. Eugene is the reigning PNGA Men’s Player of the Year, and Christine is the reigning PNGA Women’s Player of the Year. Young Adam Svensson of Surrey, BC was selected for the Development Squad, the 22-and-under program designed to help facilitate the continued development of Canada’s top young players. Svensson is the reigning PNGA Junior Boys’ Player of the Year.
In all, 10 players comprise Team Canada’s National Squad, six on the men’s side and four on the women’s squad.
Along with Eugene, Mitch Sutton of London, Ont. will once again return as members of Team Canada. The men’s National Squad welcomes Albin Choi of Toronto, Corey Conners of Listowell, Ont., Mitchell Evanecz of Red Deer, Alta. and Mackenzie Hughes of Dundas, Ont.
On the women’s side, Nicole Vandermade of Brantford, Ont. is the lone returnee. New to Team Canada’s National Women’s Squad is Rebecca Lee-Bentham of Toronto, Anne-Catherine Tanguay of Quebec City and Christine Wong of Richmond, B.C.
“We are very excited about the group of young men and women who have been selected to participate in the program for 2011. It is our goal to support these players to the best of our ability to achieve their goals within the sport,” said Jeff Thompson, Golf Canada’s Chief Sport Development Officer. “Whether competing internationally, nationally, provincially or as members of their respective collegiate teams these athletes have and will continue do their best in representing Canada.”
The 2011 coaching team will consist of Master Canadian PGA Professional Henry Brunton returning as the men’s head coach and Derek Ingram as the women’s head coach. Ralph Bauer will serve as men’s assistant coach while Robert Ratcliffe returns as women’s assistant coach.
Team Canada provides athletes with a year-round environment incorporating state of the art coaching and sport science expertise. The intent of this aggressive program is to aid Canada’s top up-and-coming amateur players in all areas of their development, producing the best golfers in the world.
The program encompasses fitness, sports psychology, nutrition, technique development and exposure to international competition. Leaders in the field of sport science are an integral aspect of building and executing the program from the perspective of mental management, strength and conditioning as well as planning and periodization.
While many golf championships Team Canada members participate in are contested on an individual basis, the program enables athletes to travel and train as a team.
Golf Canada’s Player Development program as well as the player development programs of the provincial golf associations have helped to foster the development of many Canadian players including; Graham DeLaet, Jon Mills, Alena Sharp, Chris Baryla, David Hearn, Adam Hadwin, Nick Taylor, Matt Hill, Richard Scott, Mathieu Rivard, Keven Fortin Simard, Jessica Shepley, Stephanie Sherlock, Sue Kim and Cam Burke, among many others.
The following athletes have been selected to Golf Canada’s 2011 Team Canada:
TEAM CANADA – MEN’S BIOS
Toronto’s Albin Choi graduates from Team Canada’s Development Squad to the National Squad. The 18-year old is the reigning Canadian Men’s Amateur Champion and will compete at the 2011 RBC Canadian Open next July.
This summer, he won his sectional qualifier to compete at the U.S. Amateur where he qualified for the match play portion of the championship. He also won the 2010 CN Future Links Quebec Championship – his third victory on the circuit in the last two years – and finished runner-up at the CN Future Links Ontario Championship.
Choi, a freshman with the NC State Wolfpack, ranks 76th on the R&A’s World Amateur Golf Ranking.
Corey Conners of Listowell, Ont. earned his spot on Team Canada after a solid season on the Development Squad which included a win at the Ontario Men’s Amateur Championship, co-medalist honours at the Toyota Junior Golf World Cup and a runner-up finish at the Ontario Junior Spring Classic. He also recorded a pair of third place showings at the CN Future Links Ontario and Pacific Championships and a sixth place finish at the Ontario Junior Boys Championship.
Conners, 18, is in his freshman season with the Kent State University Golden Flashes.
Mitchell Evanecz of Red Deer, Alta. is also new to Team Canada’s National Squad. The 24-year old has undeniably stepped his game up to a new level in the past two years.
In 2010, the University of Victoria graduate and former Alberta Amateur Champion successfully defended his Glencoe Invitational title and finished third at the Mexican Amateur Championship. He also finished runner-up individually at the Canadian University/College Championship after losing in a playoff, finished fourth at the Sahalee Players Championship and runner-up at the Alberta Open, where he earned low-amateur honours.
A member of Team Canada’s Development Squad in 2008, Mackenzie Hughes of Dundas, Ont. has emerged as one Canada’s top up-and-coming golf prospects.
This past summer, Hughes tied for fifth at both the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship and the Ontario Amateur Championship as well as finishing 10th at the Porter Cup. He also won his sectional qualifier to earn a spot into the U.S. Amateur, where he tied for 75th.
Hughes has won medalist honours at two NCAA Div. I events as a member of the Kent State University Golden Flashes.
Mitch Sutton, 19, of London, Ont., is a former two-time Canadian Junior Boy’s champion (2008, 2009) and a graduate of Team Canada’s Developmental Squad.
This year he finished fourth at the Ontario Men’s Amateur Championship, tied for seventh at the Canadian Junior Boys Championship and finished tied for sixth at the Monroe Invitational Championship.
Sutton is in his sophomore year as a member of the North Carolina State Wolfpack.
Eugene Wong, 20, of North Vancouver, B.C. returns to Team Canada fresh off a solid 2010 campaign, which included a runner-up finish at the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.
Collegiately, as a member of the University of Oregon Ducks, Wong was the 2010 Jack Nicklaus Award winner, an award given to the Division I Collegiate Player of the Year as voted by golf coaches throughout the United States. He was also named to the PING All-America First Team, the All-Nicklaus Team and All-Pac-10 First Team as well as earning Pac-10 co-Golfer of the Year honours. He is the 2010 PNGA Men’s Player of the Year.
Wong, a former B.C. amateur and junior boy’s champion, was a member of Team Canada’s Developmental Squad in 2007. He has two collegiate victories and currently sits eighth on the Royal and Ancients (R&A) World Amateur Golf Rankings.
TEAM CANADA – WOMEN’S BIOS
This summer, Rebecca Lee-Bentham demonstrated her formidable golf ability by earning victories at the Royale Cup Canadian Junior Girls Championship, the Ontario Junior Girls Championship and the CN Future Links Ontario Championship.
The 18-year old also advanced to the semi-final of match play at the British Ladies Amateur Championship and finished seventh at the Ontario Women’s Amateur Championship.
The Toronto native is currently in her freshman year at the University of Texas and was a member of the Team Canada’s Development Squad in 2010.
Anne-Catherine Tanguay has made quite the name for herself among many golf circles. In 2010, this 19-year old Quebec City native finished runner-up at the Quebec Ladies Amateur Championship, tied for sixth at the CN Canadian Women’s Tour event at Blue Springs Golf Club and advanced to the Round of 32 in Match Play at the British Ladies Amateur Championship.
Tanguay, who was a member of Team Canada’s Development Squad in 2010, is also a freshman with the University of Oklahoma Sooners. In just first four collegiate events in 2010, Tanguay earned two top-20 finishes and one top five finish.
Nicole Vandermade of Brantford, Ont. made her presence known at a variety of golf championships last year. The 20-year old finished third at the CN Canadian Women’s Tour event at Blue Springs Golf Club, tied for ninth at the Ontario Women’s Amateur Championship and advanced to the round of 32 at the British Amateur Championship.
Vandermade is in her junior year at the University of Texas.
Christine Wong of Richmond, B.C. enjoyed a banner year in 2010, winning provincial and collegiate titles as well as finding success on the international golf circuit.
Wong, 18, finished tied for 55th at the U.S. Women’s Open, earning runner-up low-amateur honours. She also won the B.C. Women’s Amateur Championship, advanced to the Round of 32 in Match Play at the British Ladies Amateur Championship and tied for 11th at the Royale Cup Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship. She is the 2010 PNGA Women’s Player of the Year.
In spring of this year, the Team Canada Development Squad alumna won her second collegiate tournament title in just her fifth career event as a member of the San Diego State Aztecs. In late August, she competed in the CN Canadian Women’s Open at St. Charles Country Club in Winnipeg.
As part of Team Canada, Golf Canada also named a 22-and-under Development Squad which features six male and six female athletes. The Development Squad is designed to help facilitate the continued development of Canada’s top young players.
The following athletes have been selected to the Team Canada’s 2011 Development Squad:
Men’s Development Squad
Richard Jung (Toronto)
Adam Svensson (Surrey, B.C.)
Brandon Ng (Toronto)
Eric Banks (Truro, N.S.)
Raoul Ménard (Ange-Gardien, Que.)
Wilson Bateman (Spruce Grove, Alta.)
Women’s Development Squad
Jisoo Keel (Coquitlam, B.C.)
Brittany Marchand (Orangeville, Ont.)
Brogan McKinnon (Mississauga, Ont.)
Leilanie Kim (Surrey, B.C.)
Taylor Kim (Surrey, B.C.)
Augusta James (Bath, Ont.)
ABOUT GOLF CANADA’S NATIONAL TEAM PROGRAM
The Golf Canada National Team Program incorporates advanced coaching, sport science expertise, training camps and world-class competition. The RCGA allocates over $1 million of its resources annually to the National Team program, encompassing strength and conditioning, sports psychology, nutrition, biomechanics and technique development. Players who are selected to the National Amateur and National Developmental Teams represent Canada at six to 10 internationally-sanctioned golf competitions throughout the year. The intent of this comprehensive program is to aid Canada’s top up-and-coming amateur players in all areas of their development, helping Canada produce the best golfers in the world.
Team Canada, the pinnacle of Golf Canada’s High Performance Program, provides access to world class resources including coaching, nutrition, sport science, mental management, equipment and elite competitive opportunities, building on the support team members have received in their development years from their family, member clubs, personal coaches, university programs and provincial golf associations.
Golf Canada’s High Performance Program and Team Canada are proudly sponsored by RBC Dominion Securities, Titleist, Foot-Joy, Under Armour, and ClubLink.
For more information about Team Canada or to make a donation towards the development of Canada’s future golf stars, please visit www.golfcanada.ca/teamcanada.
RBC DOMINION SECURITIES SUPPORTS THE GAME OF GOLF
RBC Dominion Securities is Canada’s leading full-service investment and wealth management firm for affluent and high net worth investors. Along with our parent company, RBC, one of North America’s leading diversified financial services companies, we proudly support golf around the world through high profile relationships with the PGATOUR, the PGA of America and Golf Canada. RBC is the Official Banking and Financial Services partner of touring professionals Anthony Kim, Mike Weir, Luke Donald,
Stephen Ames, Fred Couples, and Morgan Pressel. We are the Official Bank of the PGA of America and title sponsor of the RBC Canadian Open. RBC Dominion Securities is particularly proud to support emerging Canadian golfers through Golf Canada’s Canadian Amateur Championships and Team Canada, the country’s high performance national
team program. www.rbcds.com.
GOLF CANADA – YOU BELONG
Golf Canada – a member-based organization governed by the Royal Canadian Golf Association (RCGA) – is the governing body of golf in Canada, representing more than 350,000 members at 1,600 clubs across the country. Recognized by Sport Canada as the National Sports Organization (NSO) for golf in this country, Golf Canada is responsible for promoting participation in and a passion for the game of golf in Canada.
Golf Canada actively conducts championships, programs and services to help shape the present and future of golf in Canada. High performance athlete development, National Golf in Schools, Golf Fore the Cure, the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and Museum and CN Future Links, Canada’s national junior golf program, are only some of the initiatives the association leads for golf in Canada. As the authority for golf in Canada, the association also administers the Rules of Golf, amateur status and handicapping and course rating under the respected RCGA brand.
In addition, Golf Canada conducts Canada’s most prestigious golf championships. The RBC Canadian Open and CN Canadian Women’s Open attract the best professional golfers in the world, while regional junior and national amateur championships provide world class competitive opportunities for Canada’s top golfers to showcase their talents.
For more information about what Golf Canada is doing to support golf in your community online.