UFV Cascades hunt for Golf Canada title

Men’s golf team battling against 19 other teams from all across Canada at event

The Cascades men's golf team hits the road this week to compete for a national title.

The Cascades men's golf team hits the road this week to compete for a national title.

The University of the Fraser Valley men’s golf team is looking to carry momentum from a strong spring season into the Canadian University/College Championship in Parksville, B.C. this week.

The tournament, conducted by Golf Canada, brings 20 men’s teams and 12 women’s teams from across the nation to Morningstar Golf Club. The event runs Tuesday through Friday, and the Cascades‘ five-man roster for the week is composed of Connor O’Dell (Maple Ridge), Zach Olson (Strathmore, Alta.), Connor McLellan (Chilliwack), Kaleb Fisher (Abbotsford) and Nathan Bahnman (Abbotsford). The UFV women’s squad did not qualify this year.

The Cascades men come in red-hot, having won all four of their events this spring – a match play exhibition vs. the MacEwan Griffins, the Olympic College Invitational, the Skagit Valley Cardinal Classic, and the Southwest Oregon Invitational. Their 2015 fall season was highlighted by winning the PacWest conference silver medal and the CCAA national bronze medal.

“It’s a really strong field, and a really challenging golf course,” Cascades head coach Chris Bertram said. “But we’ve had some good success this spring – guys are playing really well right now, and if we play to our abilities, we should be right in it on Friday.”

Live scoring will be available through the Golf Canada website, and daily Cascades recaps will be posted at ufvcascades.ca.

The Cascades have had great success in recent years – they’ve won five of the past seven PacWest conference titles, and have medaled seven times at the CCAA national championships since 2007, including gold in 2013. But they’re still seeking their first victory at the Golf Canada national championship – their best-ever result is fourth, a feat they accomplished in 2010 and 2015.

“If you ask every team that’s here, they’ll tell you this is the event they circle on their calendar,” Bertram said. “You’re playing the best teams in Canada, and winning it would be a really nice accomplishment. We’re pretty excited.”

The UBC Thunderbirds are the defending Golf Canada men’s champions, and they’re coming off a second-place finish at the NAIA national championship last week.

Bertram pegged the UVic Vikes, Waterloo Warriors and Camosun Chargers – the reigning PacWest and CCAA gold medalists – as being among the other top contenders in the 20-team field.