GUYTON TRUMPS HARTMANN IN THREE-HOLE PLAYOFF
SUMMIT, N.J. (August 24, 2006) – John Guyton is in his first season as an assistant professional at Trump National Golf Club-Westchester, and he’s already made a big impression with the boss. Guyton birdied the third playoff hole to capture the 91st MGA/MetLife Open Championship in dramatic style at Canoe Brook Country Club in Summit, N.J. He defeated two-time Met Open champion Rick Hartmann of Atlantic in the three-hole aggregate playoff, after both players finished the third round with six-under-par 210 totals.
Guyton earned $23,000 for his first MGA major victory, and shortly after holing his last putt, he fielded a call from Donald Trump himself. “He just said congratulations and good going,” said the 29-year-old Guyton, who was an assistant pro at Wheatley Hills on Long Island before coming to Trump National at the beginning of this year.
Guyton came into the third round in a tie for 10th place after rounds of 74-69, and started the round four strokes out of the lead shared by Hartmann, Bayonne’s Anthony Aruta and Trump National-Bedminster assistant pro James Herman. Guyton birdied the par-five second hole and made the turn at one under par. On the back nine Guyton mounted a fierce charge, starting birdie-double bogey and then following it up with an eagle at the par-five 12th. He added three more birdies to finish the back with a four-under 32 and a final round of five-under 67 – the low round of the tournament. Guyton was forced to wait for second-round leaders Hartmann and Herman to finish their rounds.
“I knew I needed birdie to have a chance,” said Guyton of his situation on the 18th hole, in which he pushed his second shot wide right of the green into the rough. “I thought the shot went past, but it turned out with that pin position I was better off being in the rough because it ran a bit.”
Hartmann played steady golf and started his round with two birdies on the front nine, but had a bogey on the par-three 11th – his only bogey of the day – and finished with a one-under-par 71. Hartmann was trying to become the sixth player to win three Met Open titles in their career.
Herman, the other member of the Trump golf empire, had the momentum going early on, jumping out to eight under par to briefly grab a one-stroke lead. He made the turn at three-under, but after a double-bogey at the par-three 11th and bogeys at 13 and 17, he finished with an even-par 72.
When Hartmann finished the tournament at six-under and Guyton knew his fate, both players advanced to the 10th hole to begin the three-hole aggregate playoff. After matching pars on the first two playoff holes, Hartmann and Guyton both reached the par-five 12th hole in two shots. Hartmann took three putts from the back fringe while Guyton walked away with a two-putt and the victory.
Guyton’s victory marks the second consecutive year the Met Open was decided in a playoff.