Sidney native Andrew Funk always liked golf. He loves its serenity, intensity and the need for patience and dexterity.
It’s also why he was excited for the Vikes Shootout golf tournament at Cordova Bay Golf Course on Oct. 17 and 18, where he will defend his team’s crown – the University of Victoria Vikes – against their provincial rivals, the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds.
“I’m really looking forward to it,” said Funk, who’s been passionate about playing golf since he was in middle school 10 years ago.
“I like that it’s different than other sports… you’re kind of on your own. … Golf is more of a mental thing and you gotta be sharp both mentally and physically.”
Funk’s team won their first event in Lincoln City, Oregon and tied for fourth at a strong field in a NCAA Division II event in Bellingham, Wa. Growing up in Sidney, he honed his skills at Glen Meadows Golf Club and Gorge Vale Golf Club.
He is also a two-time defending champion of the Vikes Shootout and is seeded second on the five-man roster.
“In college golf, we do 36 holes in one day, so that’s around 12 hours on the golf course. You gotta be mentally sharp, or you can drift off pretty quickly,” Funk said, adding that the most challenging part about golf is the mental aspect.
“Staying alert, not getting too down on yourself, that’s the biggest one; it’s so easy to beat yourself up than getting those negative thoughts out.”
Now in his third year of sociology at University of Victoria, Funk is set on continuing his career in golf for years to come.
Recently, he represented Team Canada at the World University Golf Championships in Brive, France. Funk says it didn’t go as he’d expected, but it was an experience to remember.
“The experience, the diversification of travelling to another country, playing somewhere else is something I’ve never experienced that far away from home,” he said. “Golf is completely different in Europe, even the grass is different.”
Following the tournament in Cordova Bay, Funk and his crew head to California the week after. Soon after that, they take a three-month break from golfing for the winter, and start again in the spring.