Being able to compete against other girls who are at a high level, says Vernon golfer Kendra Jones-Munk, has really helped push her to play her best.
And it’s worked.
Jones-Munk, a freshman with the UBC Okanagan Heat, won the fifth event of the eight-stop B.C. Rivalry Series among B.C. universities and colleges Thursday, Oct. 22, at Surrey’s Northview Golf and Country Club. She shot a 1-over-par 73 to outpace the second-place golfers by a pair of strokes. Jones-Munk’s Heat teammates finished second in the team event.
“This first season of university golf has been a huge opportunity to get more and more confident in my golf game,” said Jones-Munk. “I went into the day wanting to make sure that my tempo in my swing was consistent throughout the whole day and making sure that any misses I had with shots were small and still within play.”
The recent announcement that the UBC Okanagan-hosted Canada West golf championships would be cancelled due to COVID-19 travel restrictions that eliminated the ability of out-of-province sports teams to travel to B.C. brought together some of the B.C.-based golf schools to improvise a competition schedule.
The Heat collaborated with the UBC Thunderbirds and the University of Fraser Valley Cascades to create the B.C. Rivalry Series, consisting of eight single-day tournaments during the fall semester, with the hope of scheduling an additional 12 events in the spring of 2021. The series will require all players and coaches to abide by BC health protocols.
“Winning the event at Northview was an amazing experience and a huge confidence booster and allowed me to see the results of all the training that I had done with my coach and team,” said Jones-Munk, whose strong play carried over into the final two fall events of the rivalry series.
A dominant performance by the Heat women on Thursday, Oct. 29, in the final event, saw the entire foursome finish in the top five.
Consistently the top UBCO golfer this fall, Kayleigh Trowman of Port Stanley, Ont. finished tied for second on the Morgan Creek Golf Course in Surrey with teammate Rebecca Reitsma of Kelowna. Both fired a 3-over (76) just one stroke shy of the round’s winner, UBC’s Esther Lee.
Jones-Munk and third-year veteran, Samantha Copeland of Calgary, tied for fourth with UFV’s Alex Brunner. Those three all shot (78) for the day.
With four of the top five scores on the day, the Heat ran away with the team title by four strokes, finishing with a combined score of 230 (+11). UBC shot 234 (+15) and UFV tallied a 240 (+21) for the top three team scores.
“The play from rookie Kendra Jones-Munk has been very impressive,” said UBCO coach Clay Stothers. “With an individual win after shooting 73 at Northview Ridge Course last Thursday shows how this team kept getting better all year long.
“The icing on the cake, however, was the team’s best single-day scoring yesterday in the final event of the fall with two rounds of 76 and two rounds of 78. That is the best the team has ever played…What a great way to end the fall season.”
UBCO finish the fall portion in second place in the rivalry series, trailing only the 13-time Golf Canada Canadian University/College champions, UBC Thunderbirds.