PGA TOUR RBC Canadian Open

Canada’s Ben Silverman pushing for FedEx Cup points at RBC Canadian Open

Ben Silverman
Ben Silverman (Photo by Sam Hodde/Getty Images)

When Ben Silverman was announced in the 13th tee box at the RBC Canadian Open, the fans at the feature Rink hole knew just what to do: rise and sing “O Canada,” in its entirety.

The ovation was the highlight of Silverman’s day, as the golfer from Thornhill, Ont., one of eight Canadians left in the men’s national championship, shot an even-par 70 on Saturday to sit in a tie for 49th at 1-under overall.

“I didn’t expect that,” said Silverman of the patriotic serenade. “I kind of was getting pumped up for it. It’s just a fun environment. It’s cool to be around.”

Silverman had five birdies in Saturday’s third round at Hamilton Golf and Country Club, but also had three bogeys and a double bogey on the par-4 No. 3 hole to finish his day no better or worse than the previous day. He liked how he’s played through the first three rounds of the Canadian Open, however.

“No major adjustments,” said Silverman on how he’ll prepare for Sunday’s final round. “Just keep doing what I’m doing and hope that all balls stay in the fairway and then I can have a better chance to score.”

Silverman is ranked 112th on the FedEx Cup standings with 229 points this season, having made 10 cuts at 16 events with four top 25s. The Canadian Open is his third consecutive made cut and given his position on its leaderboard it’s projected that he’ll hold his position on the PGA Tour rankings.

“Making cuts just cements the fact that I’m playing well, which I know I am,” said Silverman after coming off the course. “But honestly, the way the FedEx Cup points work unless you’re finishing top 20 at full field events like this, you’re not building enough points to make playoffs. 

“So it’s bittersweet at the same time because T-40 essentially doesn’t mean much. You need to climb up to top 20, top 10 and contend for wins.”

Taylor Pendrith (66) of Richmond Hill, Ont., fired a 4-under 66 on Saturday afternoon to move 15 spots up the leaderboard and into a tie for 15th. He did it all with a new caddie as Mitch Theoret, who usually carries his bag for him, was in a wedding party on Saturday. 

Instead, “Dynamite” Dean Emerson, who usually caddies for Patton Kizzire, stepped up.

“Dynamite Dean! He was great,” said Pendrith. “We had a fun time out there. Kept it pretty light. 

“He kept me hydrated, made sure I was eating my bars, and gave me some good numbers, so, yeah, he was awesome.”

Anaheim Ducks centre Ryan Strome was also in contention to carry Pendrith’s clubs for him.

“We joked about it,” laughed Pendrith. “I didn’t know how serious he was, because he was supposed to be at the same wedding that Mitch is in. 

“He said he would do it if I needed him, but he’s realizes that it’s my job and I should probably take a professional caddie, so it’s all good.”

Mackenzie Hughes (67) of nearby Dundas, Ont., was the low Canadian after three rounds, sitting in a tie for second at 10 under, four shots back of leader Robert MacIntyre of Scotland.

Corey Conners (67) of Listowel, Ont., was tied for 11th at 7 under and Edmonton’s Wil Bareman (72) dropped 23 spots into a tie for 36th at 2 under. 

Adam Svensson (69) of Surrey, B.C., was tied with Silverman at 1 under. 

Myles Creighton (71) of Digby, N.S., was tied for 58th at even-par 70 and David Hearn (72) of Brantford, Ont., was tied for 64th at 2 over.