Mark Tokle has survived the first two rounds of cuts on the MGI Wealth Tour and he’s hoping to make the final one this weekend.
The 36-year-old Brandonite gathered enough points in the first playoff event at the Pleasant Valley Golf Club last weekend to crack the Top 20. He comes into this weekend’s Westman Invitational at the Shilo Country Club as the 15th-ranked player and needs to at least maintain that position to compete in the Tour Championship.
That may be a little more difficult with the points tripling at the Westman Invitational — which is open to 100 golfers, although only the tour’s top 20 can collect points — but Tokle feels confident.
“Although I’m right on the bubble there, I’ve only played three events,” he said. “Otherwise I believe I would be much higher up the ranking, which is fine. It is what it is. I’m comfortable enough with my game and ability that I’m confident that I’ll still qualify for the final event in the top 15. I expect to improve my position fairly substantially this weekend.”
The MGI Tour modified its point system to be more like the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup, where point values increase during the playoffs. That could give all of the top 15 golfers in the final a chance to leave Killarney as the champion on Sept. 23.
Tokle, whose work schedule has limited the events he can play in, gives the new format rave reviews.
“It does make it exciting and it’s a lot better than if it was down to three or four guys with only two weeks left to go,” he said. “I think this is better and probably promotes more of those 15 or 20 guys to play and be involved, which is great.”
While he is well back of defending champion Matt Burman for the tour lead, Tokle knows two strong weekends could shoot him up the standings. He believes he just needs to get his putter going when the two-day tournament begins on Saturday.
“It’s cliché, but you have to keep the ball in play off the tee and you have to putt well to put together a low score,” he said. “I haven’t been hitting the ball too badly, so if I can putt well we’ll see what happens.”
CHARITY EVENT: The United Way of Brandon and District is looking for golfers to play in its Chairman’s Golf Tournament on Sept. 22 at Shilo.
It’s been five years since the organization has held a tournament like this, and interim CEO Cynamon Mychasiw thought it was the perfect way to help kick off their 75th annual fall campaign.
“We wanted something different for kickoff and decided a golf tournament was a great way to start things off,” said Mychasiw, whose organization provides 26 programs and services to the area. “It’s a great way for everyone to come together and have fun. We not only have our sponsors with us but our supporters as well and a lot of people that we’ve never dealt with before, so it’s a great way for us to get in contact with a lot in our community.”
Eighty-eight golfers have registered for the Texas scramble tournament that starts at 11 a.m., and there are still lots of openings. Anyone interested in participating must register by Friday by contacting the main office at 204-571-8929.
CHIP SHOTS: The Boissevain Golf Course is hosting the Greenkeeper’s Revenge tournament on Sept. 22 … The Minnedosa Golf and Country Club will host a cross-country tournament Sept. 29.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 13, 2012