The Yellowknife chapter of the Mediocre Golf Association has never had a winner from outside the city in its three-plus years of operations.
That all changed on June 20 and it took a former Yellowknifer to do it.
Mike Auge came back to his birthplace to make history, becoming the first player based outside of Yellowknife to claim the winner’s cheque as he finished atop the standings in the chapter’s FORE! Championship on June 20 at the Yellowknife Golf Club. Auge was a regular on the association’s circuit before moving to Hay River earlier this month and it was his first career win.
“He is officially the first non-Yellowknife player to win an event,” said Shaun Morris, the chapter’s president. “He wants to be eligible to play at the MGA World Championship in Las Vegas and you have to play in at least three events to do it so this was his first and he’s driving back up to play two more in August.”
Ryan Sheppard, who seemingly ends up finishing second or third in every tournament, was forced to play bridesmaid again as he was second this time around.
Both players were actually tied following their 18-hole round with identical scores of 90 but the winner wasn’t decided in a playoff, said Auge.
“We finished pretty quickly and there were players still out on the course,” he said. “Instead of us having the playoff, they did a countback on the scorecard to see who was last in the lead before we ended up tied.”
Morris said the countback was at least five holes before it was discovered Auge was ahead but Auge said he was confident even if it had to go to bonus golf.
“Truth be told, I still would have beaten him in a playoff,” he said.
Grace Lau-a was the women’s champion as she shot 105 to claim the low score title.
The FORE! Championship is the chapter’s version of the Midnight Classic and took place the evening before the main event got underway.
Morris said the MGA moved its date for the FORE! Championship because of the date change for the PGA Championship (now held in May instead of September) but the date remained unchanged for Yellowknife’s purposes.
“We always hold it just before the Midnight Classic because it’s our Midnight Classic so we just kept it on the same date,” he said.
Next up on the calendar is the F.U. (Freedom and Unity) Open, the MGA’s take on the U.S. Open, which happens on July 14.