The only one of the four local qualifiers to remain standing after the cut, Alex Fowke continued his climb at the Ontario Junior (U19) Boys Golf Championship Wednesday in Southampton.
After carding rounds of 73 and 75 on the first two days, comfortably sliding into the top half of the field of more than 110 young golfers, Fowke would break par on day three at the Saugeen Golf Course, his round of 71 leaving him tied for 14th place, but only four shots off a top five finish with eighteen holes remaining on Thursday.
"In my first round, I was on point, hitting some good shots - I executed my game plan," said Fowke on Tuesday evening, midway through the race for the provincial title. "Today, the wind was a little bit of a factor and I dropped a few shots, late in the front nine, but I ended up battling through the back with a bogey free 35."
Leaving northern Ontario in the middle of August to join the Ranger College Rangers program in Texas, Fowke acknowledged that patience was as key an element to his game, this week, as any other factor.
"There are places you can be aggressive, but you need to have a game plan and pick your spots," he said. "I knew that if I played conservative on most holes, got my pars, and focused on a couple of holes where I should make birdie, that was my plan for the first two days."
"If I keep doing that, play smart on some holes and plot my way around the course, I think I can catch a few more guys."
Sitting at three over par (219), Fowke is currently deadlocked with Owen Kim (Blue Springs Golf Club), Sam Hogan (Rattlesnake Point GC) and Michael Ikejiani (Barrie Country Club).
The field that remains are trying to chase down the duo of Nolan Piazza (Cherry Hill Club) and Yuqi Liu (The Country Club - West), with both players showing the way at eight under par (208), five shots clear of Ty Stansfield (Thornhill Club).
Locals who joined Fowke and company for the first two days included Josh Hayes (159), Vince Palladino (161) and Joseph Colasimone (170), all three of whom are representing the Idylwylde Golf & Country Club, with Fowke donning the Timberwolf Golf Club colours.
In late junior golf news on Wednesday came word that Johnny Svalina had captured top spot at the CJGA U19 Boys Eastern Ontario Championship held this week at Tangle Creek Golf & Country Club in Thornton.
MORE ON THIS TO FOLLOW