Alexis Belton (Ruston, La.) and Will Hogue (Collierville, Tenn.) captured the Clash in the Canyon – the first televised World Long Drive Association (WLDA) event of 2018 – amidst a dry Nevada desert backdrop.
Belton’s win – her first – comes in only her second-ever World Long Drive competition (after advancing to the semifinals at the 2017 Volvik World Long Drive Championship last September). The 24-year-old WLDA newcomer utilized a 332-yard drive in the final against Alex Phillips (Las Vegas, Nev.) along with a 334-yard blast in her semifinal match against 2013 Volvik World Long Drive champion Heather Manfredda (Shelbyville, Ky.)
Hogue, the former No. 1 in the World (2016) outlasted the current World No. 1 – Justin James – in the final after connecting on a 413-yard drive. The 32-year-old firefighter/paramedic advanced to the final after beating Ryan Reisbeck (Layton, Utah) courtesy of a 426-yard drive.
The Clash in the Canyon is the second official event of the 2018 World Long Drive season, as Justin Moose claimed the East Coast Classic in Columbia, South Carolina last month. The next stop on the schedule is in three weeks at the Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun, taking place in Maricopa Ariz., and airing live in primetime on Golf Channel, Tuesday, May 15.
OPEN DIVISION FINAL
(6) Will Hogue (Collierville, Tenn.) def. (1) Justin James (Jacksonville, Fla.)
WOMEN’S DIVISION FINAL
(2) Alexis Belton (Ruston, La.) def. (4) Alex Phillips (Las Vegas, Nev.)
OPEN DIVISION SEMIFINAL MATCHES
(1) Justin James def. (8) Ryan Steenberg (Rochester, N.Y.)
(6) Will Hogue def. (3) Ryan Reisbeck (Layton, Utah)
WOMEN’S DIVISION SEMIFINAL MATCHES
(4) Alex Phillips def. (8) Troy Mullins (Los Angeles, Calif.)
(2) Alexis Belton def. (6) Heather Manfredda (Shelbyville, Ky.)
OPEN DIVISION QUARTERFINAL MATCH RESULTS
(1) Justin James def. (30) Jim Waldron (Scottsdale, Ariz)
(8) Ryan Steenberg def. (14) Justin Moose (Columbia, S.C)
(6) Will Hogue def. (15) Kyle Berkshire (Orlando, Fla.)
(3) Ryan Reisbeck (Layton, Utah) def. (18) Nick Kiefer (Chicago, Ill.)
2018 WORLD LONG DRIVE ASSOCIATION SCHEDULE:
DATE EVENT LOCATION
March 15-17 East Coast Classic West Columbia, S.C.
April 21-24 Clash in the Canyon (*Golf Channel*) Mesquite, Nev.
May 11-15 Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun (*Golf Channel*) Maricopa, Ariz.
June 4-5 Atlantic City Boardwalk Bash (*Golf Channel*) Atlantic City, N.J.
June 21-23 Bluff City Shootout Memphis, Tenn.
July 6-8 Bash For Cash Port Robinson, Ont., Canada
August 2-4 WinStar Midwest Slam Thackerville, Okla.
August 12-13 Tennessee Big Shots benefitting Niswonger Children’s Hospital (*Golf Channel*) Kingsport, Tenn.
September 1-5 Volvik World Long Drive Championship (*Golf Channel*) Thackerville, Okla.
Showcasing the truly global nature of World Long Drive, several events will be staged in 2018 through officially sanctioned WLDA international partners, including stops in Germany, Japan, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Additionally, an all-encompassing international qualifier will be staged (late summer) featuring a minimum of four exemptions into the Open Division of the Volvik World Long Drive Championship in September.