Pemberton, B.C. – Three rounds have been completed at the 2023 Canadian Senior Men’s Championship, presented by BDO and there is a new name atop the leaderboard as Ken Griffith takes a one-shot lead into Friday’s final round at Big Sky Golf Club in Pemberton, B.C.
After winning the Senior Inter-Provincial Team Championship with Alberta on Wednesday, Griffith of Red Deer, Alta. fired a 2-under 70 to move to 4-under for the championship and leads over Dave Bunker and Doug Hanzel who both sit at 3-under.
Griffith enjoyed a solid round on Thursday with a 1-under 35 on the front nine and finished strong with birdies on 13 and 15, with his driver being the difference for him, “first couple of days it was struggling a bit, but the driver set the golf course up and it was actually a very uneventful day. So felt like a good round…feel like I left a few out there but I’m happy with the way I played and that’s the most important thing,” said Griffith.
Right behind Griffith is Dave Bunker of Ridgeway, Ont. who was co-leader heading into the third round. Bunker shot a 2-over 74 on Thursday to move into a tie for second, just one shot back. Bunker opened the back nine with bogeys on 10 and 11 and a double bogey on 15 before closing his round with a birdie to stay within one.
“I hit a lot of good shots today. Back nine got a couple of bad breaks on 10 and 11 and made bogeys there, hit a bad tee shot on 15 to make double but I finished with a birdie on 18 so if I make more birdies and get rid of the other stuff, I’ll be happy with that, but I am hitting the ball well enough I just got to convert on some chances that I didn’t today,” said Bunker.
Both Bunker and Stephen Jensen of England finished the first two rounds tied for the lead, but Jensen shot a 4-over 76 on Thursday to drop into a tie for sixth at 1-under.
Tied with Bunker for second is Doug Hanzel, the 2017 runner-up who shot a 1-under 71 on Thursday. Along with being one back of Griffith, the Savannah, Ga. native continues to lead the Super Senior division by three shots over 2018 Canadian Men’s Senior Champion, Brady Exber of Las Vegas, who sits at even par following a 1-under 71 on Thursday.
Griffith’s Team Alberta teammate, Brian Laubman of Edmonton sits tied for fourth place in the Senior division with Robert Funk of Canyon Lake, Calif. at 2-under for the championship.
The tournament began with a field of 156 golfers competing for the John Rankin Memorial Trophy with the winner receiving an exemption into the 2024 U.S. Senior Amateur Championship.
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