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Gregg Tavolacci of Bridgeport hurls a disc into a metal basket during the Get Ripped Wide Open disc golf tournament at Panthorn Park in Southington on Sunday, Sept. 1.

Disc golfers descend upon Southington

SOUTHINGTON — Silence filled the air as Adam Goodman stepped up onto the wooden platform to prepare for his turn at the second “hole” in Panthorn Park’s disc golf course. The faint sound of traffic from the highway and an occasional chirp from a nearby bird were the only sounds.

Goodman hurled his disc toward the metal basket a couple hundred feet away. After Goodman released his disc, the silence was broken as his fellow competitors chimed in on his throw.

“Boo-yah,” said Jeff Cahill of Norwalk.

“Did it skip?” said Gregg Tavolacci of Bridgeport.

“He’s right up there,” Cahill answered.

Goodman was the returning pro champion from last year for the Get Ripped Wide Open disc golf tournament at Panthorn Park in Southington on Sunday.

Fifty-five people came from throughout the region to participate in the two round, 18-hole competition. There were 10 divisions, some of which were masters for people over 40 years, pros, amateurs and intermediates. The first round kicked off at 9:30 a.m. and the second at 1:30 p.m. The tournament is sanctioned by the Professional Disc Golf Association and the New England Flying Disc Association.

The pros winner of the tournament got a cash prize of $400.

“It’s one of our smaller events,” said Joe Proud, tournament director and Southington resident.

Disc golf resembles traditional golf , but participants don’t use clubs or a ball. The disc takes the place of the ball and the length of the holes is measured in feet instead of yards. In order to complete the hole, the disc has to go into a metal basket. Trees, shrubs, mud and leaves are all obstacles the players have to overcome.

During tournament play the course takes about three hours to complete. Despite the forecast, the rain held out and players were able to continue the second round.

“It’s not bad but we were expecting more people,” Mike Zorovich of Meriden said. “We ended up with a good pro payout so pros should be looking to get $400 for first place, which is fantastic.”

This is the fourth time the tournament has been held at Panthorn Park.

After Goodman’s toss the men picked up their backpacks filled with different colored discs of different weights and sizes and headed towards the metal basket to find where their discs landed. Like golf, they keep throwing their discs until they go into the metal basket at the end of the hole.

Since 2000 Goodman has been playing disc golf and has played at different courses throughout the country. He doesn’t plan on stopping his play anytime soon.

“It’s just a different community and you can make a lot of friends,” Goodman said. “People come from all over to play together.” (203) 317-2212 Twitter: @FollowingFarrah

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