Golf games to play: The Shootout

A golfer hitting a great approach shot to the green

In honor of this week's 29-player Tour Championship on the PGA Tour, we share with you how to play the best elimination game in the sport: the shootout. Yes, it's not the game they'll be playing at East Lake in Atlanta this weekend, but it's a lot of fun. 

Here are the rules:

  • You start on the first tee with a set number of players, however many you want, but preferably no more than one player more than the maximum number of holes you can play (e.g., 19 players for an 18-hole shootout).
  • On the first hole, every player golfs their ball until they hole out. The highest score in the group is eliminated. If there are ties for high score, you can choose to have a contest (i.e., putting or chipping) to decide the survivor(s), or you can choose to eliminate all tied for the high score.
  • Play continues until there is just one player left. That player wins the shootout.

There are plenty of variations on the game, particularly playing in twosomes in alternate shot -- a game especially beloved for golf league and country club member-guest championships.

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