I’m in last place and feel fine — why an 825-rated player enters a tourney

By Kevin Morrow — For Rattling Chains

Standing on the first tee, I turn to face my group.

“Hi, my name is Kevin Morrow and I’m an 825-rated player.”

I then get that true support-group reaction, in unison.

“Hi, Kevin!”

Kevin Morrow tees off on the 12th hole at Loriella Disc Golf earlier this year. A birdie on this hole helped Morrow to his lowest round ever in a tournament.

Kevin Morrow tees off on the 12th hole at Loriella Disc Golf earlier this year. A birdie on this hole helped Morrow to his lowest round ever in a tournament.

Sometimes, I feel like my playing in disc golf tournaments equates to being an addict. It’s a lot of self-abuse and nothing good comes from it.

Let me back up a little bit.

I began playing disc golf in 1986. By the early 1990s, I was playing tournaments and finishing in the middle of the pack in Am2. I stopped playing tournaments in 1996 and by 2002, I had stopped playing entirely.

In all of those tournaments, I never cashed or won prizes. A few years ago, I picked up my discs again. Last year, I began playing in tournaments again. A big part of that decision was because of the local club — the Spotsy Disc Golf Club. I joined this year and it’s a great group of golfers. Being around them got my competitive blood flowing again.

Being at the back end of the masters division and being an 825-rated player has unique situations. As a player who isn’t new, do I enter the rec division or intermediate? Or do I man up and play advanced masters?

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Professor Rizbee’s Disc Golf 101: How to be a better tournament player

By Allen Risley — For Rattling Chains

In my 30-plus years of disc golf experience, I have played in hundreds of organized events, including weekly doubles leagues, course monthlies, PDGA-sanctioned events and world championships. And I’ve organized and run a lot of those, too (except for the world championship. I don’t know if my therapist has enough appointments for me to take that on).

As I’ve been playing and organizing, there are certain truths that have become evident – truths about how to conduct oneself as a tournament player for the best possible outcome for all. Now, this is not a list of how to help you win a tournament – there are enough articles and blog posts out there that purport to be able to do that.

Instead, this is a list of ways that you can enhance your own tournament experience as well as that of those around you. Sure, some of these tips might actually lead to you scoring better and maybe even winning, but the real aim here is to make everyone’s tournament experience more pleasurable, because if we’re not working, we might as well be having fun, right?

Sign up as early as possible. Why do that? Why not wait to see if the field is going to be good, or interesting? Well, what if everyone did that? Would anyone ever sign up? By signing up early, you can be the reason that others jump in – a leader, not a sheep.

Pre-registering for a tournament makes it a ton easier on tournament directors. (photo courtesy Allen Risley)

Pre-registering for a tournament makes it a ton easier on tournament directors. (photo courtesy Allen Risley)

Also, signing up and paying early helps out tournament directors by making money available for them to buy the trophies and player pack items, pay for insurance, or pay park fees. Many TDs burn out after a running a few events, and one reason is that they drive themselves crazy worrying about whether they’re going to lose their shirt because no one is signing up for their event. Help out the TD.

Show up on time. Most events list a start time, whether it be for check-in, the player’s meeting, or for the start of play. Know what those times are and be there on time. It’s even a better idea to be a little early. Why? Show up late for check-in and you might lose your spot in the tournament. You also put the TD in the position of worrying about filling your card, shuffling cards and players, etc. – all the things that raise a TD’s blood pressure and lead to burnout.

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McBeth wins opening National Tour event; tourney roundup: Feb. 22 – March 6

Paul McBeth (shown here at last year's Vibram Open) won the first National Tour event of the season this past weekend at The Memorial Championship.

Using a steady weekend with three rounds in the 40s, Paul McBeth won The Memorial Championship for the second straight year, winning the title by three strokes over Innova teammate Will Schusterick.

The tournament ran in Scottsdale, Ariz., from Feb. 29 – March 3 and served as the first event of the National Tour Elite Series.

McBeth, who earned $3,500 for his victory, finished 44-under-par with a four-day 188. He had rounds of 45, 44, 53 and 46.

One of his rounds — the first — was an 1107-rated round, one of four rounds at the tournament that had a rating of more than 1100.

Schusterick had one of the others — shooting a 43 in the final round for an 1103 round. He finished the tournament with rounds of 49, 45, 54 and 43 for a 41-under-par 191. Schusterick earned $2,500 for second place.

Dave Feldberg, who placed third with a 39-under 193, had the other two top-rated rounds. He shot a 44 in the opening round for an 1115 round and had a 42 in the final round, for a 1112. In the second round, he shot a 48, but a 59 in the third round appears to have doomed him. He still left with a $2,000 check for third place.

Avery Jenkins and Steven Rico tied for fourth place, each winning $1,550 for finishing at 31 under. They each had a 201. Jenkins’ top round of the tournament with a final-round 48. Rico shot a 47 in the second round as his top score.

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