Allen Captures First World Title on Final Ball in Championship Match;
Meti Claims Third World Championship (Tied for 2nd All-Time)
THACKERVILLE, Okla. (Sept. 5, 2018) – The World Long Drive Association welcomed its newest world champion on Wednesday night, as Maurice Allen (Pine Hills, Fla.) claimed his first world title courtesy of a 393-yard blast on his last ball of the championship match. In the Women’s Division, Phillis Meti (Auckland, New Zealand) captured her third world championship (2006, ’16) to cement herself as one of the most decorated World Long Drive competitors ever.
The boisterous Allen validated his brazen persona by demonstrating his newfound stature as the longest hitter in the world, as he accounted for the three longest drives of the night, one in each of the quarterfinal, semifinal and championship matches (392, 393, 393 yards). In the championship match, Allen was forced to rely on his final ball in order to eclipse Justin Moose (Columbia, S.C.), who connected for 382 yards on his best drive of the match.
“To live a dream that has come true, it’s hard to explain,” Allen said following the victory. “It’s been an amazing ride.”
Meti’s victory on Wednesday night marked her second world title in three years, and tied her for second-most all time in the Women’s Division with Stacey Shinnick (2000, ’02, ’05). Her 317-yard drive in the semifinal match pitted her against Chloe Garner (Johnson City, Tenn.) in the championship, edging Garner’s 310-yard drive with a 313-yard ball to claim the title.
“This is really unbelievable,” Meti said following the win. “When we took a different course earlier this year in terms of training and focus and having the intention to win the World Long Drive Championship again, you know this is just the cherry on the cake.”
OPEN DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
WOMEN’S DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
OPEN DIVISION SEMIFINAL MATCHES
(8) Justin Moose def. (12) Jim Waldron (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
(2) Maurice Allen def. (14) Josh Cassaday (Denver, Colo.)
WOMEN’S DIVISION SEMIFINAL MATCHES:
Chloe Garner def. Emily Tubert (Burbank, Calif.)
Phillis Meti def. Heather Manfredda (Shelbyville, Ky.)
OPEN DIVISION QUARTERFINAL MATCHES
(8) Justin Moose def. (1) Will Hogue (Memphis, Tenn.)
(12) Jim Waldron def. (4) Ryan Steenberg (Rochester, N.Y.)
(14) Josh Cassaday def. (6) Tim Burke (Orlando, Fla.)
(2) Maurice Allen def. (10) Mark Costello (Houston, Texas)
2018 WLDA VIEWERSHIP, SEASON RECAP: Ahead of the Volvik World Long Drive Championship, the World Long Drive Association has accounted for nearly 6 million viewers year-to-date, +70% vs. 2017 (prior to the World Championship). Event winners over the course of the season heading into the World Championship include:
|March 15-17||East Coast Classic||West Columbia, S.C.||Justin Moose|
|April 21-24||Clash in the Canyon (*Golf Channel*)||Mesquite, Nev.||Alexis Belton, Will Hogue|
|May 11-15||Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun (*Golf Channel*)||Maricopa, Ariz.||Phillis Meti, Will Hogue|
|June 4-5||Atlantic City Boardwalk Bash (*Golf Channel*)||Atlantic City, N.J.||Sandra Carlborg, Mark Costello|
|June 21-23||Bluff City Shootout||Memphis, Tenn.||Will Hogue|
|July 6-8||Bash For Cash||Port Rowan, Ont., Canada||Ryan Steenberg|
|August 2-4||WinStar Midwest Slam||Thackerville, Okla.||Kyle Berkshire|
|August 12-13||Tennessee Big Shots benefitting Niswonger Children’s Hospital (*Golf Channel*)||Kingsport, Tenn.||Emily Tubert, Justin James|
|September 1-5||Volvik World Long Drive Championship (*Golf Channel*)||Thackerville, Okla.||Phillis Meti, Maurice Allen|
ABOUT WORLD LONG DRIVE ASSOCIATION
Originating in 1976, the World Long Drive Association is an organization that brings together golf’s longest hitters from around the globe. Emerging as one of golf’s most popular grass roots competitions – a finalist at the 2018 Cynopsis Sports Media Awards in the League of the Year for a Breakthrough Sport and Live Coverage of a Breakthrough Sport categories – sanctioned Long Drive events are open to amateur and professional golfers. With an Open Division, Women’s Division and Masters Division (Ages 45+), the sport appeals to golfers of all ages. The 2018 WLDA season consists of events across the United States and around the world, culminating with the Volvik World Long Drive Championship, Sept. 1-5, from WinStar World Casino and Resort on the Texas / Oklahoma border, where competitors will convene under the lights for the world title on Golf Channel. In 2017, World Long Drive coverage on Golf Channel featured three televised events, and across all telecasts (live and replay) airing across Golf Channel and NBC, 6.4 million unique viewers watched at least some portion of World Long Drive events, +295% vs. 2016, and the most-viewed season of World Long Drive on record (2013-2017, according to data released by The Nielsen Company).
-NBC Sports Group-