Stenmark Regains Golden Tee Crown In Come-From-Behind Victory

Posted On: 7/2/2019

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LAS VEGAS, NV - Incredible Technologies reports that its 2019 Golden Tee World Championship drew an enthusiastic audience to witness ferocious competition and dramatic reversals of fortune during the three-day tournament. Fought out on the capacious Showroom stage at the Orleans Casino and Hotel here, the event awarded more than $135,000 in prize money and ended with a hard-fought win by 2017 champion Mark Stenmark (Houston, TX).

The majority of contenders qualified for the Golden Tee world championship in online matches played on commercial Golden Tee machines this spring. Two more spots were awarded by a special "Closest to the Pin" match played on the first day of the event. More than 120 players contended in the fast-paced competition to secure those final two spots. When the dust cleared, longtime players Rick Copithorne (Nevada) and Chris Mackenzie of Indiana triumphed, completing the field.

The second day featured qualifying heats on each course to determine the head-to-head matches for day three. The players ranked 1 through 32 were placed in a double-elimination Champion bracket, while the bottom 32 were added to a single-elimination Silver bracket. Many of the early favorites found themselves facing some tough matches as they battled to stay in the competition. Between rounds, audience members were treated to fun events and chances to win prizes on Golden Tee golf equipment.

On the third day, the competition became fierce, with high scores and close calls deciding the winning and losing sides of the double-elimination bracket. Former champion (and betting-odds favorite) Stenmark lost his fourth match to relative newcomer Jared Decker (Dallas, TX), playing remarkable golf throughout the event. Stenmark then battled back in the loser's bracket to reach the final match, once more facing off against the undefeated Decker. Stenmark dropped an alarming -31 in the first match, bringing both contenders even with a loss apiece. In the final round, both competitors tied with -29 scores after 18 holes, triggering a sudden-death round. Following 14 intense holes of even play, Stenmark was able to eke out a one-stroke lead to win the match and the title of 2019 Golden Tee World Champion.

The champion took home a $30,000 check, while Decker won $15,000. Stenmark, who already is a "playable golfer" selection in Golden Tee, will get a facelift in the 2020 course update slated for availability this October.

The entire three-day event was live­streamed through Golden Tee's YouTube, Facebook Live and Twitch channels, and was watched live by thousands of viewers all weekend long. Recorded versions of the stream are still available on all channels. The championship also will be produced into a half-hour broadcast which is scheduled to air on ESPN2 this August.

Launched in 1989 by Incredible Technologies, Golden Tee Golf found immediate favor as a challenging, long-lived recreation that was fun to play and could not be learned. Networked competitive play was introduced in 1995, and enhanced by the introduction of the Golden Tee Live system in 2005.

FINAL FIVE: Finalists share the limelight at conclusion of 2019 Golden Tee World Championship in Las Vegas. From left to right are First Place Silver Champion Ben Furlan (Metarie LA); 3rd Place Champion Clint Grover (Rockford IL); World Champion Mark Stenmark (Houston TX), with $30,000 prize check; 2nd Place Champion Jared Decker (Dallas TX); and 4th Place Champion Graig Kinzler (St. Charles IL).