Canaan Valley Golf Tournament Results
The APT-West Virginia tour went high into the mountains to play one of the best hidden gems this state has to offer, Canaan Valley Resort. The weather called for rain to start in the evening, well after the round was to end. However, shortly after the first group teed off, rain began to fall and the wind began to swirl. The rain soon tapered off, but the wind would remain for the entire round. The front 9 is protected by trees in on the mountain side of the course, which made the wind not as noticeable, and ideal for scoring. The valley side of the back 9, is where the wind took control and affected shots, making players need to be more selective with their club choices if they wanted to take home the trophy.
Last weeks Division 1 winner Jerod Ewing has never seen Canaan Valley before. You would be hard pressed to think that after he fired a -4 under on the front 9. Bogey’s on both par 3’s on the back 9, slowed down an otherwise excellent round. However, Jerod closed with back to back birdies to finish at -4 68.
Brandon Thompson, Ted Upton, and Brandon Preece battled for top honors in D2 at Canaan Valley. Thompson and Upton went back and forth with the lead on the front 9, as it looked to be a 2 man race. Going to the back 9 however, Brandon Preece played consistent and finished the final 6 holes with 2 birdies to set the clubhouse number at +4. A bogey on 16 by Thompson gave Preece a 1 shot lead, and an untimely double one hole later handed Brandon Preece his 1st win of the season, and redemption, after falling to Brandon Thompson by 1, earlier in the season at Bel Meadow.
In a head to head matchup between Bryan Preece and Michael Heitz, it was a battle to the very end to see who would hoist the D3 championship at Canaan. Bryan jumped out to an early lead, as Michael struggled to find consistency off the tee box, and went to the back 9, down by 7 shots. The driver finally came into play and Michael began to work his way back up the board. The wind took it’s toll on Bryan as they made the turn to the back, where he started with back to back doubles, followed by back to back bogey’s, as Michael closed in. A well timed birdie on 14 stopped the bleeding and propelled Bryan to a 2 shot victory over Michael.
The most competitive matchup of the day was courtesy of Division 4, where 6 different players held, or shared the lead at different times throughout the day. Last weeks winner, Justin Keaton started off strong with a birdie on the 1st hole. He found another birdie at 12, as he set the clubhouse number at +14, where he was in 6th out of 7. Once the field found their way to the back 9 however, they started falling down to Justin’s number. The most consistent player and near the top all day was Tyler Ellison. Tyler came up just short last week at Fincastle of claiming the top spot, but he would not be denied today. Tyler came up clutch on the par 3 16th with a nice par save putt. He finished with 2 bogey’s, but the par on 16 was the difference as he claimed his first career championship by 1.
In division 5, Ron Snow led early and it looked like he would battle for the championship. A rough back 9 however knocked Ron from contention. Trailing by 5 after 9, Charles Belcher had a great back 9, where he battled back to trail last weeks winner RJ Smith by 1, as he stepped to the 18th tee. Trouble getting to the green on 18 doomed Charles in his bid for his 1st career win, as RJ Smith held on to win by 3, and claim his 2nd consecutive victory and take over the D5 points lead at the halfway point of the season.