Barela Takes Advantage Of Scoring Opportunities To Take Lead At Las Vegas Challenge

Cold weather and hot rounds highlight day one

Photo: Alyssa Van Lanen

Ultiworld Disc Golf’s coverage of the 2019 Las Vegas Challenge is presented by Innova Discs; all opinions are those of the authors. 

The Infinite Discs Course was primed for some scorching scores on a snowy day at the Wildhorse Golf Club for the Las Vegas Challenge opening round.

Anthony Barela leads the pack after the first round with a 1078-rated, 15-under par 44. The teenager went 8-under on the front nine, eagling the 621-foot par 4 hole 3 after putting his tee shot within 15 feet. He followed it up with a 7-under on the back nine, never carding a bogey in the round. Barela finished at 100-percent C1X putting and was within Circle 2 in regulation at a 94-percent rate.

Chris Shotwell lived up to his surname and is in sole possession of second at 14-under par 45. Shotwell also carded an eagle with a 165-foot throw-in on the 555-foot par 4 hole 8. The 1000-rated golfer from Upland, California shot 69 points over his rating and was 100-percent putting from Circle 2 connecting on three attempts.

Simon Lizotte, Garrett Gurthie, Josh Anthon, Philo Brathwaite, Calvin Heimburg, and Corey Ellis are all tied in third at 13-under par 44.


  • Canadian Thomas Gilbert was unfazed by the weather and took the early clubhouse lead with a 12-under par 47. He did not par a hole until the 18th, and played exceptionally well save a double-bogey six on hole 6. Fellow Canuck Martin Hendel is also at 12-under par. They are tied with six other players in ninth. 
  • Defending champion Eagle McMahon and Ricky Wysocki are in a five-way tie for 17th at 11-under par 48. Paul McBeth is in a six-way tie for 28th at 9-under par 59 along with Kevin Jones, Cale Leiviska, Scott Withers, Lance Brown, Autin Hannum and Max Nichols.
  • If you’re looking for a “cooler” in Vegas, look no further than hole 10. It only saw eight birdies on the day, and stopped streaks from Calvin Heimburg, Nick Newton, Paul Oman, and Brathwaite who all started the round 9-under par through nine holes. Hole 10 and hole 14 were the only two holes to play above par.
  • Barela led or tied for the lead in fairway hits, parked shots, Circle 1 and Circle 2 in regulation, C1X putting, scramble rate, and OB rate.

The lead card of Barela, Shotwell, Lizotte, and Gurthie tees off at 1:32 p.m. local time. Jomez Pro will feature next day coverage, and live scores can be followed at UDisc Live.

  1. Christopher Wiklund
    Christopher Wiklund

    Chris is a contributor at Ultiworld Disc Golf. He lives and works on Cape Cod in Massachusetts where he plays as much disc golf as he can, and reminds people he lives on Cape Cod. He likes spending time outside when he isn't playing video games and watching TV.

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