By Nick Kuhl on June 22, 2019.
Travis Trace knew the birdies were going to come.
His patience was rewarded and the Jacksonville, Florida golfer has
placed himself atop the leaderboard for now as the second day of the
MacKenzie Tour PGA Tour Canada Lethbridge Paradise Canyon Open wrapped
up Friday at the Paradise Canyon Golf resort.
After starting out his first rain-delayed round with eight straight
pars, Trace drained five birdies in a row and seven on the back nine
for an opening round 63 and a stunning 28 on the back nine.
He followed that up with a second round of six-under 65 for a Day 2
total of 14-under as round two play wraps up this morning.
“We played four holes (Thursday), all pars, and then made par on five
to eight and I was staying patient because I knew birdies were out
there,” said Trace. “I rattled off five in a row from nine to 13
and then made a couple 20-25 footers on 16 and 17 and I just blitzed
the back nine, got on a little heater.
“I don’t think I have (shot 28), I’ve shot 29 a few times, but
that was my first 28.”
That spilled nicely into his second round as Trace puts himself nicely
into contention heading into the weekend.
“Everything was feeling really good, putter was rolling well. It got
a little windy in the second round, but I was hitting it well, doing
everything pretty well so I stayed pretty confident and had a solid
second round as well,” he said.
Taking over sole possession of second place as of Friday night was
Justin Doeden, who posted a second round nine-under 62 following a
bogey-free, nine-birdie round.
Continuing his rain-delayed first round Thursday with a birdie on 13,
Doeden kept the pedal down to put himself near the top of the
“I had an aggressive mindset all day,” he said. “I haven’t
been in this situation for awhile now, I’m kind of far behind on the
Order of Merit but my mindset was to make birdies. I’ve been playing
good golf for the last couple of weeks, but got off to a rough start
(Thursday). So I was kind of glad the situation happened with the rain
“I came back out today and made birdie on 13, my first hole of the
day, and really kept it going. I hit a lot of good golf shots and the
putter kept me going all day. I was 9-under bogey free today, but the
putter was the key for sure.”
As the Lethbridge Paradise Canyon Open heads into the weekend portion,
the aggressive mindset remains.
“You have to keep the gas pedal down honestly,” said Doeden. “You
know this tour is all about making birdies. Every week is 20-under
plus, so we have a lot of golf to go so my mindset won’t change, just
go make birdies and the weekend is going to be fun.”
Sitting tied in third at 11-under after two rounds as of Friday night
is Alex Chiarella and Lorens Chan.
Chiarella carded an eagle on eight in his second round for a front-
nine 33. He had two more birdies on the back nine, but bogeyed the
17th hole for a four-under 67.
“I eagled eight, it was playing really short and downwind, so I hit
three-wood to stay short of the rough, that left me about 200-yards. I
hit an eight-iron to about eight feet and made that and that
definitely helps,” said Chiarella.
Dealing with the weather-delayed rounds, Chiarella said he was
starting to feel the affects of playing a little catchup.
“I was just walking up the last hole and I told the two guys I was
playing with that finally my legs were starting to feel it,” he said.
“So I’m excited to eat some good, get some rest and get ready for
this weekend. I was just trying to be patient, I kept saying the word
patient and patience in my head today. It was going to be a long day
regardless, so I just tried to stay patient.”
Putting himself in the weekend running, Chan was used to multiple
rounds in a day.
“It was tough stopping mid-round and getting back up in the morning
but college golf is a lot like that, you’re playing 36 all the time
so that was something that I’m sort of used to,” said Chan, who
shot 64 in the first round and 67 in his second. “It was nice that we
had some nice weather in the morning so it was scoreable and the
greens were a little bit softer, the afternoon was tougher just cause
of the wind and the pins were a bit tougher but managed it around and
“I did miss a one and a half footer so that was a blooper on my part
and ball striking could be a bit better but the short game feels good
and that’s the main thing.”
Sitting in second place after Thursday’s play, Zane Thomas made it
through 14 holes Friday and was 10-under, as was David Pastore who got
in 13 holes. The duo are in a five-way tie for fifth-place.
Thursday’s leader, Will Gordon, was three-over in seven holes and is
eight-under and tied for 12th.
Jared du Toit was the top Canadian after Friday’s delayed rounds. The
golfer who lives in Kimberly, B.C. and is caddied by former Lethbridge
Hurricane Carter Bancks was four-under for a total of nine-under and
in a tie for 10th.
There was an hole-in-one in Friday’s rounds as Derek Gillespie aced
the 14th hole.
The Canadian golfer from Oshawa finished with a second-round score of
74 after opening with a 68.
Jamie Gerlitz of the Picture Butte Golf Club followed up his first
round of 72 with a second-round 74 for a four-over 146.
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