Brook turns the tide at Aberdeen Glen

Before he teed off on his final hole in the British Open Sunday in Northern Ireland, Shane Lowry was already getting his name engraved on the silver claret.

They could have done the same for Wyatt Brook near the end of his day on the course at Aberdeen Glen. By the 16th hole in Sunday's third and final round he already had his first Aberdeen Glen Men's Open title in the bag.

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Heading into the final round with a four-shot lead over defending champion Adam Veenstra of Smithers, the 20-year-old from Chilliwack saved his best for last. He shot seven-under 66, after opening with a 69 on Friday. Combined with his 67 on Saturday on the par 73 course, Brook finished at 17-under with a 202 total - the lowest ever in the 21-year history of the event.

"The first two days I got off to a rough start - the first two holes, are par five, par five and I was one-over after the first two, but then after that it was really good the rest of the day," Brook said. "Today was the second-ever bogie-free round for me, I had seven birdies and 11 pars out there. I didn't have any three-putts this weekend and today was definitely one if the best iron days I've ever had."

Aberdeen Glen is known for its thick-forested fairway roughs and Brook lost just one ball in three rounds. He had a four-stroke lead over Veenstra as they began the back nine and increased the gap to five strokes by the time they arrived at the 16th tee.

"Adam made a triple there (on No. 16) and I finished eight ahead of him, so after 16 I just had to finish strong," said Brook, who had played the course just once before, two years ago.

Veenstra, Brook's former minor hockey teammate when they were growing up in Smithers, finished second. He blistered the course with a 65 on Friday, one off the course record, carding 65-69-76--210 to finish eight strokes behind Brook.

Brook finished 18th two weeks ago in the B.C. men's amateur championship in Abbotsford. He's heading into his third year as a business major and University of the Fraser Valley in Abbotsford. He moved from Smithers to Kamloops when he was 12 and was based there until 2017, when he relocated to Nanaimo.

Being able to play golf year-round the past two years has given his game a huge boost. He finished 10th as an individual in the Canadian University championship at the end of May and helped his team finish fourth. He also mustered a 25th-place finish at the Glencoe Club Men's Open in Calgary.

For winning, Brook gets a trip to Las Vegas. He plans to use that after he turns 21 next year, when he's old enough to take in all the shows.

Veenstra, 21, won his first Aberdeen Glen Men's Open in 2014 as a 15-year-old and successfully defended the title the following year. He flirted with the nine-under course record last year as well.

"Last year I was eight-under coming into 17, same as this year, and I doubled 18 to shoot six-under and on Friday it was the same scenario," said Veenstra. "I wanted to get to (nine-under) to get the course record and missed about a four-foot putt to get that.

"The first round I played really good, couldn't miss it and thought I'd carry it to Round 2 and I struggled the first 15 holes but finished birdie, birdie, par to kind of scrape it around. I had five straight rounds in the 60s coming up to today and just kind of fell apart. It wasn't really nerves, it's just golf. You can't always be perfect."

Last weekend at a qualifier for the U.S. men's amateur in Tacoma, Wash., he shot 68-67 and finished fifth, needing a top-two finish to qualify. Veenstra attends Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Ariz., an NCAA Division 1 school, on a golf scholarship.

Blair Scott of the Prince George Golf and Curling Club was third (71-74-75--220), tied with Joel Veenstra of Smithers, Adam's 19-year-old brother (70-68-82--220).

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