Okanagan golfers share first-round lead at pro tourney

Vernon’s Troy Bulmer and Kelowna’s Cole Wilson among quintet who shot 5-under-par on Mackenzie Tour’s Osprey Valley Open near Toronto

Vernon golf pro Troy Bulmer of Predator Ridge (pictured) and Kelowna’s Cole Wilson are in a five-way tie for the lead after the opening round Thursday, Aug. 18, of the Mackenzie Golf Tour’s Osprey Valley Open near Toronto. (@bulwergolfphoto)

Vernon golf pro Troy Bulmer of Predator Ridge (pictured) and Kelowna’s Cole Wilson are in a five-way tie for the lead after the opening round Thursday, Aug. 18, of the Mackenzie Golf Tour’s Osprey Valley Open near Toronto. (@bulwergolfphoto)

Vernon golfer Troy Bulmer and Kelowna’s Cole Wilson are among a five-way tie for first place following the opening round Thursday, Aug. 18, of the Osprey Valley Open at TPC Toronto at Osprey Valley’s Heathlands Course.

The 72-hole tourney is part of the Mackenzie Tour – PGA Tour Canada schedule.

Bulmer, Wilson, Vancouver’s Evan Holmes, Matt Shubley of Whitby, Ont. and amateur Noah Steele of Kingston, Ont. each shot 5-under-par 66 Thursday. Bulmer’s scorecard included a 32 on the front nine. He credited his play off the tee for his early success.

“I drove the ball well today,” said Bulmer. “If you can put the ball in the fairway consistently out here, usually you can start making some birdies because you’re controlling your spin coming into the greens. And where they were tucking a lot of the pins today, you needed to be able to do that.”

Blair Bursey is one shot off the lead after shooting a 4-under round of 67. The Gander, NFLD, native led after the first three rounds of the season-opening event in Blainville, Quebec. Bulmer finished tied for 30th there at 7-over. Bursey won last week’s stop on the Great Lakes Golf Tour , the Sani-Marc/Desjardins Canada Cup in Victoriaville, Que. Bulmer finished at 5-under par and collected $557.14.

Vernon’s Bryce Barker missed the 36-hole cut of +2 by two shots, finishing at 72-75, 3-over-par.

Thirty-eight golfers shot under-par in the first round of the Osprey Open, with 26 players recording scores in the 60s.

“When it’s blue skies and the wind’s low, you know you gotta go out and make a mitt-full of birdies,” said Bulmer. “It’s pure out here. There isn’t a blade of grass out of place, and everything is manicured perfectly.”

The top-five players on the final Points List will earn 2022 PGA TOUR Canada membership. First place on the Points List will receive fully exempt status for the 2022 PGA TOUR Canada season, while those in the second-through-fifth positions will earn exempt status up until the first reshuffle based on player performance.

Fourteen players shot 69 Thursday and are tied for 12th. They are three shots behind the leaders.

READ MORE: Okanagan golfer oh-so-close to double national titles

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