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Golfer Riley Wheeldon makes play to repeat Battle at The Bear win

Posted on May 8, 2016

Defending champion Riley Wheeldon will be among the 62 players registered to tee it up at the second annual Battle at The Bear presented by Miura tournament on the Vancouver Golf Tour, the circuit’s first major of the year.

“Riley will be back and it was perfect for us last year because he’s one of our Bear Mountain ambassadors,” Bear Mountain Resort director of golf Jordan Ray said of the event, which goes today and Monday at the popular course.

A total of 30 professionals and 32 amateurs will peg it up at 1 p.m. today and finish it off with morning tee times on Monday.

“We’re hoping to get a few more players from the [Mackenzie Tour] Q-school at Crown Isle. They had the one day between there and here so it should be a good event again,” Ray said prior to the field being finalized.

Among the more well-known players are Wheeldon, of Comox, who plays out of Bear Mountain; Cory Renfrew of Victoria; Kevin Maxwell of Olympic View; Brayden Eriksen of Pheasant Glen; Adam Cornelson and Thomas Hay of Langley; Seann Harlingten of West Vancouver; Kevin Stinson of Mission (the 2015 VGT Order of Merit winner); James Allenby of Royalwood GC; and Michael Belle of Vancouver Golf Club.

Hay shot rounds of 70-69-72-72 and Cornelson turned in efforts of 67-74-72-70 to finish tied for ninth place at Mackenzie Tour Qualifying school at Crown Isle last week and carry that momentum coming in. Both earned their cards for the first four events on PGA Tour Canada before a re-shuffle occurs.

Harlingten outlasted Wheeldon in a playoff at the VGT Mission Golf Classic last month after the two finished their rounds at 6-under 65. Cornelson was tied for third at that event, two strokes back with Belle, Allenby and Hay tied for fifth at 3-under 68.

The Bear Mountain event was open to all male and female professionals and amateurs with a handicap of 18.0 and under. The professional division highlights a purse of $10,000, with first place collecting $2,500. Amateur prizing is $5,000 in total.

Wheeldon finished with a two-day total of 136 last year, three shots better than Harlington and Allenby (who had a hole in one in Round 2) and Bryan Toth, of Gorge Vale, topped the amateur field at 150.

Amateurs will play the Mountain Course today and Valley Course on Monday with the tracks reversed for pros.

Story by: Mario Annicchiarico