February 23, 2024

WACO FPO Round 1 Recap

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Round one of the Waco Annual Charity Open has concluded; as predicted the weather was cold, windy, and intermittent precipitation. On the FPO side of the tournament shooting near par kept 12 players in the hunt. The ripping winds, forced a majority of the field to layup putts they’d normally run. There is no sense in running a forty-foot putt with a 25mph winds. While the athletes were in the wooded holes (4-12), there was a better chance at a longer putt provided the lie wasn’t in the bush. When the FPO lead card tees off, the weatherman predicts the temperature warmer than round one and the wind is down to a relatively calm 10mph.

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Here are your Round 1 FPO top 10:

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n Placen Movementn Namen Score
n 1n –n Eveliina Salonenn -4
n 2n –n Paige Piercen E
n T3n –n Ohn Scogginsn +1
n T3n –n Valerie Mandujanon +1
n T5n –n Rebecca Coxn +2
n T5n –n Catrina Allenn +2
n T5n –n Deann Careyn +2
n T5n –n Kristin Tattarn +2
n T5n –n Kat Mertschn +2
n T5n –n Macie Velediazn +2
n T5n –n Holyn Handleyn +2

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Valerie Mandujano

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Tied for third place is Valerie Mandujano (+1). Of the four women on lead card Mandujano managed the wind the best. She took four bogeys and one double bogey in the woods. Carding only one bogey in the open on hole 18 landing in the water. Her other OB stroke was on hole 4 where she took a double bogey. Her 64% from C1X was good enough to get her to the lead card for round two. Unlike the rest of the lead card, she did not park a single hole. With the better conditions for round two, Valerie Mandujano needs to make putts to keep her in contention.

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Ohn Scoggins

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The other FPO player tied for third place is Ohn Scoggins (+1). Her earlier tee time allowed Scoggins to make it through the first few open holes with four straight pars. She carded two bogies and one double bogey. Her bogey on 14 and double bogey on 15 were the result of taking an OB stroke on each. All four of her bogey strokes were the result of her inability to scramble when she got off the fairway. Ohn Scoggins is known for her deadly putting and round one was no exception. She was 100% from C1X making a long 27-foot putt in the woods on hole 9 to save par and successfully scramble.  

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Paige Pierce

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Sitting in second place is Paige Pierce (E). Pierce had a rough start to her day going OB on the first hole. Her rollercoaster round saw four bogeys, one double bogey, and six birdies. Paige Pierce successfully scrambled one out of her five times. Her C1X putting percentage put her tied for 38th best while her 14% from C2 put her fourth in the FPO field. Like most of the field, Pierce struggled to make any putts outside of fifteen feet.

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Eveliina Salonen

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The current leader of the FPO field is Eveliina Salonen (-4) and she looked solid. She was able to keep the disc in the fairway for a majority of the round going off the fairway twice but successfully scrambling 100% of the time. I had to double check this stat; I honestly thought there was a mistake with the person running UDisc for the feature card. Eveliina Salonen has a 0% in putting from circle 1X and Circle 2. She had only two C2 attempts and 7 C1X attempts. But when you park a third of the holes, you don’t need to make a lot of putts. Going into round 2 Eveliina Salonen has a 4-stroke lead over second place Paige Pierce.

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Other Notable Performances

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Macie Velediaz

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Other notable performances came in from Macie Velediaz (+2) making her 2022 Disc Golf Pro Tour debut. She had a strong showing in the woods (4-13), shooting +2 on some very technical holes. 

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Natalie Ryan

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In a move that surprised me, Natalie Ryan (+5) came to WACO. Given how she looked with the hamstring injury at Las Vegas Challenge I was not certain that she’d play WACO. With the poor conditions and tight fairways its hard to tell what affected her game more the woods and wind or her hamstring injury. There was no coverage of her play and I’ll be monitoring her card closely.

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Kona Panis

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The 2021 WACO champion, Kona Panis did not look comfortable playing in round one. Some commentary speculated that the pressure of the big, public contract added significant stress to her Las Vegas Challenge performance. Most of the commentators said that now that she underperformed at LVC it was out of the way, she can relax and play her game. Unfortunately, she came in with just as many expectations for WACO, having dominated the tournament with a -16 for the tournament, beating second place Ohn Scoggins by 12 strokes. Now that she isn’t on coverage, will Panis perform or will we have to wait a week until the Open at Belton to see her compete for a podium?

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Round 2 FPO Coverage

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The FPO lead card (Eveliina Salonen (-4), Paige Pierce (E), Ohn Scoggins (+1), Valerie Mandujano (+1)) will tee off round two at 9:20AM CST/10:20AM EST. FPO Coverage will begin at 9AM CST/10AM EST with the chase card (Rebecca Cox (+2), Catrina Allen (+2), Deann Carey (+2), Kristin Tattar (+2)). 

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