Joseph Deraney of Belden, Mississippi, traveled north of the border and shot 10-under 278 to win the Canadian Mid-Am on Thursday at The Algonquin Golf Course in St. Andrews, New Brunswick.
This is Deraney’s third recent victory in the tournament. He also won the 2018 and 2019 editions.
“It’s so hard to win,” Deraney said. “It’s nice to be able to fall back on your experiences a couple times, but it’s just always difficult to win.”
Deraney opened 72-69-69 to share the 54-hole lead with another American, Derek Meinhart of Mattoon, Illinois. But Deraney quickly separated himself with a birdie on the first hole and went out in 2-under 34, three strokes better than Meinhart.
The 40-year-old Deraney – runner-up in the 2019 U.S. Mid-Am and a consistent competitor in the mid-am game – went on to make six birdies in his round en route to winning by three strokes. By virtue of his age, he also won the Mid-Master division of the tournament, which is for competitors 40 or older.
Deraney attributes the victory to not getting over-aggressive.
“I think after the first round, I made too many bogeys,” Deraney said. “How you win championships on difficult golf courses is that you don’t make bogeys. I kept reiterating to myself that if you make four birdies and no bogeys, that’s 4-under. So I really started playing more cautious.”
It paid off for Deraney, who also finished runner-up in the John T. Lupton Memorial earlier this year.
He received an exemption into next month’s U.S. Mid-Am and the 2024 Canadian Amateur.
Ryan Terry of Brentwood, Tennessee, came in solo second, one stroke ahead of Meinhart. Terry shot 68-77-68-68 and could have won the tournament if not for his second-round stumble during which he made five bogeys and one double bogey.
Keanu Akina of Kahuku, Hawaii, shot 10-under 206 and then won a three-man playoff to capture the mid-am competition on Saturday at the International Team and Individual Championship on Las Vegas (Nevada) Paiute Golf Resort’s Snow Mountain course.
Akina, a senior at BYU, won with rounds of 67-69-70. Despite a bogey on his 54th hole, Akina bounced back in the playoff to beat Josh Goldstein of Las Vegas and Adam Miller of Nekoosa, Wisconsin.
There were four competitors representing each state or region in the team portion of the tournament. Each day, the three top scores counted while the worst score was dropped.
Akina, playing for Utah, led his team to an 11-under 637 total for a one-stroke victory over Northern California.
The tournament, once known as the Midwest Cup, was forced to switch courses at Paiute because of flooding from the remnants of Hurricane Hilary. Originally scheduled for a Sunday finish, the tournament started a day early and ended on Saturday.
Here is more information on the origin of the event.