The unknown has been very good to Ryan Sholdice this week.
The Bel Acres member opened the Manitoba Junior Golf Championship with confident rounds of 68 and 69 at par-72 John Blumberg Golf Course, establishing a five-shot lead.
But then the championship switched venues as it often does, moving over to stately St. Charles Country Club for the final two days. That's usually a perk for players, but for Sholdice, it was total uncertainty.
He had never seen the place.
Quality golf carried the day nonetheless as Sholdice plotted his way around St. Charles with rounds of 76 and 74 and was never challenged en route to an 11-shot victory.
"I'm pretty pumped," Sholdice said. "I wanted to win this year for sure. Last year I tried (finished fourth) but (2011 champ) Myles Sullivan is a pretty good player."
Then came the other unknown.
This year, the Manitoba Junior crown carries with it an exemption to next week's Players Cup, the Canadian Tour event at Pine Ridge.
"Do I get a spot? Really?" a surprised Sholdice said to reporters.
"I didn't know about that.
"That's pretty good, but I'll have to think about it more. I'll probably be a little nervous."
Sholdice was anything but during this week's junior.
He was not the leader after Day 1 -- that honour belonged to Zach Sackett of Elmhurst at 67.
"It was good he shot low," Sholdice said. "I liked it. Good competition."
Not for long, though. Sackett ballooned to 77 the second day and the junior was effectively over when Sholdice birdied five of the first seven holes at Blumberg to race out to the five-shot lead at the tournament's half-way point.
"Third day, I'd never seen the course so I didn't know what to do," he said. "I didn't get out. It was my first round (Thursday)."
But he figured out what to do.
"Just hit fairways and greens," Sholdice said. "I just tried to make my pars and get out of there."
He did quite a tidy job of that Friday, making 16 pars and just two bogeys to finish 11 shots clear of Selkirk's Travis Fredborg and Southwood's Bret Thompson.
Fredborg rallied from 11th place with a one-under 71 on Friday to earn a spot on Manitoba's top-three team for the Canadian Junior next month in Nova Scotia.
Thompson was 73 to move up from fifth.
In the girls' division, Glendale's Jenna Roadley added a second provincial title to the one she earned in 2010.
Roadley did it emphatically on Friday, carding a three-under 69 to run away from her rivals.
She began the final round with just a one-shot lead over St. Charles' Nicole McGlenen but the drama was short-lived on the final day.
Roadley birdied four of the first six holes on the traditional tournament north-south (Mackenzie-Ross) layout and that was that. Her three-day total was 229, 14 better than co-runners-up McGlenen and Dana Todd of the host club.
McGlenen finished with an 84 and Todd was 81 on Friday.
R.Sholdice, Bel Acres 68-69-76-74--287
T.Fredborg, Selkirk 76-73-78-71--298
B.Thompson, Southwd 76-74-75-73--298
N.Ngo, Selkirk 73-75-77-74--299
M.Peters, St. Charles 71-72-80-76--299
J.Roadley, Glendale 80-80-69--229
N.McGlenen, St. Charles 78-83-84--245
D.Todd, St. Charles 77-87-81--245
B.Fredette, Southwood 75-91-82--248
M.Poponick, Selkirk 84-84-90--258