The University of the Fraser Valley men’s golf team climbed the podium at the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Golf Championships for the ninth time in the last 12 seasons, battling their way to bronze on Friday in Medicine Hat, Alta.
Playing at Desert Blume Golf Club, the top-ranked Cascades found themselves in fourth place heading into Friday’s fourth and final round, but were able to rally to tie the Champlain St. Lawrence Lions at +19 for the week. The two teams each secured bronze, with the Andre-Laurendeau Boomerang winning gold at -14 and the Humber Hawks taking silver at -5.
Bronze wasn’t necessarily the medal the defending champion Cascades were dreaming of heading into the week, but head coach Chris Bertram pointed out that winning a national medal of any colour is a difficult feat.
“I’m really proud of how the guys rallied today to grab a spot on the podium,” he said. “Any time you can medal at a national championship, it’s cause to celebrate.”
Daniel Campbell was the Cascades’ top finisher – the reigning CCAA men’s individual champ and two-time All-Canadian carded rounds of 72, 69, 72 and 69 to finish at six-under for the week, tied for fourth overall. Andre-Laurendeau’s Laurent Desmarchais won the individual crown at -13.
“Daniel played incredible once again this week,” Bertram said. “From tee to green he was maybe the best player out there. If a few more putts had dropped for him, who knows where it might have ended up. But regardless, he should be really proud of how he defended his national championship title.”
UFV sophomore Ben Whiton, after opening with an 80 on Tuesday, was excellent for the balance of the week, shooting 71, 72 and 72 to finish tied for 17th at +7. Zach Olson (+8) tied for 19th, Kyle Claggett (+11) tied for 21st, and Cody Stewart (+16) tied for 30th.
“We didn’t have our best stuff this week, but I’m really happy with how this group stuck together and held each other up after a pretty poor first day,” Bertram said. “We have a special group of young men in this program, and I’m proud of each and every one of them.”