The championship's thrilling conclusion unfolded during the final round. As the day began, no participant held a substantial enough advantage to claim victory with certainty. Recognizing this as a chance to seize glory, numerous competitors embraced daring tactics in pursuit of a triumphant outcome. However, only one could take the title of champion for each championship.
For the first time in Throw Pink Women’s Disc Golf Championship history, an athlete from the chase card won the whole thing. Holyn Handley, who started the day in 4th, rose three spots to win the entire thing. The final round of the women’s championship was hard fought. Kristin Tattar and Eveliina Salonen started T1 and took turns being in the lead on the front 9, while Handley slowly climbed up in the ranks. A series of unfortunate OB’s dashed Salonen's chances, allowing Handley to claim her position.
As they reached Hole 18, Handley held a slim lead of -2, closely pursued by Tattar. Handley threw, went OB twice, before making a 27’ putt for a double bogey. Tattar's throw, on the other hand, landed safely in the fairway, and she expertly parked her disc beneath the basket for a birdie. The two were tied, guaranteeing a playoff. The first playoff hole ended in a tie. Then on hole 2, Tattar overthrew right into the water, while Handley’s disc landed securely on the fairway, securing her title of 2023 TPWDGC Champion.
Third crush boy Kyle Klein climbed the leaderboard during the final round, securing the lead and championship title. The final day started with Klein in 4th place and Joel Freeman in the lead, followed by bomber Bradley Williams. Freeman had shot mainly pars during the front 9, while Klein got birdie after birdie, just two shy of shooting an all birdie front 9. Like we mentioned during the round 3 recap, Klein kept up his 1st place spot in number of birdies on the course and 1st in parked drives.
Going into the final hole, Klein had a hefty lead over Williams. Unless Klein pulled a Richard, the crowd knew he was going to win the championship. In an unexpected twist, Klein's two out-of-bounds shots left him in a precarious 1-point lead, causing fans to anxiously await the outcome as both competitors prepared for their putts. Klein’s secure lead quickly turned into a 1 point difference. Fans were biting their nails as the two competitors got ready to putt. Williams sunk his putt from 16’, securing a bogey. The championship title hinged on Klein’s putt. With a 5' putt remaining, Klein demonstrated nerves of steel, sinking the putt to secure a double bogey, first ever major win, and the title of the 25th Anniversary USDGC Champion.
The 25th anniversary of the USDGC was a success. The village was the largest is has ever been with over 30 vendors, more savory food trucks, and The Fresh & Now concert series. There were more spectators onsite than any other year before. And the championship is just getting better.
Watch the post-produced coverage on Jomez’s YouTube channel on October 19.