Daily Herald Staff
Colin Coben might not ever want to leave Waskesiu Lake.
The Delisle golfer, who captured his fourth straight Conexus Senior Men’s Lobstick title last week at the Waskesiu Lake Golf Course, was the low amateur qualifier after the first day of qualifying at the Conexus Men’s Lobstick on Monday and is just one shot out of the lead in the Men’s Open competition, which concludes with a second round today.
Coben fired an even-par 70 on Monday to trail Brian Dueck from Estevan by a single shot as the 36-hole medal-play Open precedes the match-play tournament that takes over the course for the remainder of the week.
Dueck, a club professional who is entered only in the Open, was the runner-up last year after he lost a heart-breaking five-hole playoff to Jody Dueck from Warman (no relation) on the final day of the event.
Taylor Afseth of Saskatoon carded a 71 to trail Dueck by two shots in the Open with Mike Herperger of Humboldt another shot back at 72. Leighton Bearchell from Elk Ridge also had a 72 to share fourth place in the Open, but he is not entered in the match-play tournament.
Teal Grenier of Domremy was the lone competitor in the Open to shoot 73 with a large group another shot back at 74 including Warren Gnam of Medicine Hat, Shaun Dunphy from Saskatoon and a trio of professionals in Colby Fox and McLaren Taylor from Saskatoon along with Kevin Dietz from Regina.
Cy Goudal from Shellbrook, Tyler Zaba from Regina, Brad Phelps from Saskatoon, Doug Kozak from Regina, Liam Courtney from Waskesiu and club professional Sloane Harder from Saskatoon are all in at 75.
In addition to the second round of the Open today there will also be the remainder of the field who did not qualify on Monday taking to the course.
As it stands after the first day, and some golfers could climb into the top section from today’s qualifying round, Coben holds the No. 1 seed going into the match-play portion followed by Afseth and Herperger. Justin Blackwell of Saskatoon joins Grenier at 73 while Wyatt Newman of Prince Albert also had a 74 to fall into the group that includes Gnam and Dunphy.
Aaron Mitchell of Saskatoon had a 75 to match the score posted by Goudal, Zaba, Phelps, Kozak and Courtney with Prince Albert’s Doug Braaten heading the group at 76 that includes former Lobstick champion Kirk McGregor from Regina and 2012 runner-up Greg Swenson from Prince Albert. Keenan Streleau of Martensville and John Cook from Saskatoon also had 76s.
Defending champion Danny Klughart from Prince Albert had a 77 and three-time winner Martin Ring of Prince Albert was in a group at 78.
The field of 240-plus golfers will be put into flights after today’s final day of qualifying with the top 32 making the Championship Flight. Matches will get under way on Wednesday and continue all week with finals in all flights scheduled for Saturday morning.