2019 Play It Again Sports Jonesboro Open presented by Prodiscus: MPO Final Round Recap - Alert! Runaway G.O.A.T. on the loose!Read Now
When round three of the 2019 Play It Again Sports Jonesboro Open presented by Prodiscus started today, shortly after round two, the lead card was all within two throws of each other. With that kind of stage, we were almost guaranteed to see the lead change hands a number of times. Plenty of folks were just behind them too but eventually were left behind as our leaders continued to charge. But oh right, someone had to invite Paul McBeth to the party. Soon enough McBeth redefined that charge as he took off on a 10 hole birdie streak from 7-16. Everyone was doing everything they could to keep up, but eventually, they had to let go of those hopes and focus on each other. McBeth won the event at a total 27 under par, Garrett Gurthie finished second at 24 under, Chris Dickerson took third at 22 under, and then we had a tie for fourth between Eagle McMahon and Paul Ulibarri. The mud was absolutely atrocious but the play was perfectly pleasant. Read on to find out more.
Paul McBeth may not have been McBeast for the first six holes of round three…but as the sun came out and the weather got warmer, Paul hit the perfect play switch and finished the event with birdies on 10 of the last 12 holes! Having to play more golf in a single day than a usual tournament day you’d think he might be in the zone for round three. Sadly for Paul his front nine only included five birdies. It’s okay though, he got seven more on the back. Honestly, I think he had to miss that short putt on 6 as motivation. Come on Paul! Par? You got a Par!? We expect more.
It wasn't until 11 holes later that he made such an egregious error again. 17 seemed to almost come out of nowhere. His drive leaked off the fairway; a risky cut-roller out curled back on the edge of the rough; with no real look, a lofty jump putt brought him to a tap-in par. It was actually pretty impressive to watch Paul play a hole from the rough like the rest of us mortals do more often. And yes, he's good at that too. With one hole left to play, McBeth had a four throw lead over Gurthie and could pretty much walk it in on the last beast of a hole. But that wouldn’t really be the McBeast we’ve come to know and love. Despite it being a solid 60-foot look McBeth still lofted up a full run at the sloping green of hole 18. Just a bit high, the disc sat only momentarily before everyone else had finished the round and Paul had the distinct pleasure of tapping in his win.
Garrett Gurthie started the day in first but took his sweet time getting the engine going. It was a park job on the island hole 6 that got him back to a tie for first with Paul. But that was the last time he would be that close to our winner. That didn't keep him from playing some great golf though. He fell off the lead early, and even as far down as fifth but amended his fate with a flawless eagle three on the fourth hardest hole of the day – 16. It's pretty amazing Gurthie didn’t win, no one else got it to Circle 1 or straight up Parked for birdie than him, not Even Paul. It honestly was only the putting that kept him from keeping up with McBeth.
With only 17 and 18 left they had one beast left. 17 plays neutral (.3 over par on average) but 18 is the hardest hole of the course today, averaging almost a hole throw over par. He definitely brought the average down on 17 earning himself an all but easy birdie with a smash of a drive further than pretty much anyone else had made it on this hole. He earned himself a one throw lead over Chris and a chance at true second depending on how 18 played out. He didn’t end up needing it, but another classy birdie on 18 earned Double G a two throw win over Dickerson and his second second-place finish at the Jonesboro Open. I think it's safe to say he'll play this one again. Congrats Double G, that was a fabulous weekend of golf.
That leaves Chris Dickerson, finishing in third, as our last short story of the night. Head-to-head against any other player on pretty much any other day his 8 under par in these conditions could earn him a win or even a chance at a playoff. Much like Ricky Wysocki in WACO though, Dickerson found himself shredding in McBeth’s wake…with a good handful of players chomping at his heels. He even briefly gained a three throw lead over Garrett that took an eagle for Double G to close back up. By the eighteenth, a monster of an 818’ par 4, he was chasing one of the biggest arms in the sport by one. He didn’t quite get his approach to a makeable putt so had to let go of his dreams of a tie for second – it was already clear, par wasn’t going to be enough.
The day was filled with plenty of other great rounds of golf. Eagle McMahon's early charge had the makings of chasing even further up the ladder but even though he threw the second-best round of the day he was still three throws behind the best – you guess it Paul McBeth’s healthy 12 under par round. Paul Ulibarri had a tough second round but his first round 12 under plus his final round 8 under really kept him in it. Grady Shue and A.J. Risley also both eagled hole 16, and fun note: Shue bogeyed it in round one and then eagled it twice in a row. Now that’s what I call redemption. John Matlack hit a 202’ throw in eagle on hole 11….so, nice ace! With that, I’ll wrap this up by letting you know we’re taking a few weeks but we’ll see you in May for the San Francisco Open presented by Innova Champion Discs, oh and go play disc golf!
This article written by Zach Podhorzer. All photography credit to Alyssa Van Lanen.
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