CLYDE RIVER, N.S. – The River Hills Golf and Country Club is ready to welcome the best male golfers in the province to the 2018 MCT Men’s Amateur Championship, being hosted on July 5 to 8 at the Clyde River course.
“The course is ready; the clubhouse is ready. The NSGA (Nova Scotia Golf Association) was down and were thrilled with what they saw and are excited to be hosting this event at River Hills,” says tournament organizer Karla Wilms.
One of the most prestigious men’s golf events in the province, 73 players are registered for the tournament, including 20 from River Hills, some of whom have been contenders for the title over the years, finishing in the top of the field.
“We have a huge talent in this end of the province and we have some athletes here that no matter what sport they compete in, they excel,” says Wilms. “For us to have the opportunity to showcase their talents on home soil is exciting. “They are all good athletes and for them to have the opportunity to compete on home soil is exceptional. We are just thrilled to be able to host this event and knowing we have some of the top athletes in the province as golfers who are going to be able to compete here, we are really looking forward to it.”
The Men’s Amateur “is the holy grail. It’s what every golfer from the age of 7 wants to win before he turns pro, if he’s good enough to turn pro,” says Aaron Nickerson, of Clark’s Harbour, who has two Nova Scotia Mid Am (over 25) championships to his credit and will be competing in the Men’s Amateur for the 26th time.
“This is my last good shot at it,” he says. “We’re hoping one of the hometown boys can come away with the title.
“It should be an interesting tournament, especially if the winds pick up,” he adds. “It will make the greens harder, more firm and harder to control the ball. It’s a very challenging course. It has small greens and is wind swept. The superintendent has done a great job getting the course in shape. He’s going to let the rough grow a little bit around the outskirts so if you miss your shot off to the right or left you’re going to be penalized.”
Jody Swim is another title contender from River Hills, but says for him, competing on his home course will add to the pressure.
“There’s more pressure on yourself, more expectations,” he says. “Hopefully we get good conditions. Definitely the guys from home have a chance … there’s a bunch that could do really well. Whoever has a good week, whoever gets hot at the right time. I’m looking forward to it.”
One River Hills player who is on fire this season and is entered in the Men’s Amateur is 18-year-old Teran Newell. Named the NSGA western zone junior player of the year for 2017, Newell has already racked up two first place finishes in his division this season in Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour (MJT) competition.
Ryan Dixon, Darrell MacKenzie, Ben Doane, Kevin Holland, Andre Atkinson, Jordy Atkinson, Dustin Goreham, Patrick Goreham, Colby Nickerson, Shayne Nickerson, Bobby Stoddard Sr., Bobby Stoddard Jr., Christopher Perry, Jevon Link, Ken Jacquard, Sam El Jakl, and Don Dorey are the other River Hills’ golfers registered to play in the Men’s Amateur.
Spectators are welcome to watch the action from the sidelines. The only stipulation from NSGA is that no power carts are allowed, only walking.