The final FPO card has turned in their score cards here at the 2017 Vibram Open at Maple Hill and Valarie Jenkins has emerged the clear leader. Jenkins finished round one as
the only player better than par at three under, with a five throw lead. She is trailed by Paige Pierce and Zoe Andyke, who finished tied at two over par. As is always the case at Maple Hill, it comes down to keeping your shots clean. With swirling winds today, the course proved even harder than usual.
I caught up with Val after she finished her hot round to talk about her day and the remaining three rounds. “I feel pretty good. I had a really solid round. Pretty much played to my game plan.” If you look at her hole scores, that’s a damn good game plan. Jenkins carded only one bogey and three birdies. Talking with her, it was clear that there wasn’t much she needed to clean up, except “the only hole I felt didn’t go exactly as planned was hole 8, didn’t make it over the water, and in general that’s the key to that hole.” Looking forward, Jenkins shared “I hope to play steady through the rest of the week, it’s a really challenging course where you have to be on your game, today I felt like I was weaving through the trees, maybe the next day I might not do the same, so keep em’ a little more accurate.” At the end of the day Val shared the wisdom of a seasoned Vibram Open Player (She’s been at this tournament since 2005) when she reminded me that “Out here par is what you’re shooting for.”
Val’s hot round wasn’t the only excitement on the course. You simply can’t have this many great players walk onto Maple Hill Disc Golf Course and not see some amazing disc golf. Filling out the lead card will be Paige Pierce (+2) who throughout the round had her putts right on line but often just a few inches too high. At the moment that mattered most though, she got the putt together to drain a 49 foot jump putt for Eagle on hole 18. Also in the top four, tied with Paige, is Zoe Andyke (+2) who took some time to card a birdie, but with good work done on 16 and 17 she cleaned up some of her bogeys. The final player on tomorrow’s lead card will be Sarah Hokom who finished at three over par in large part due to three OB penalty strokes on 5, 9, and 14. Clean those up and she could very well chase down Val.
We have plenty of disc left to play but before I sign off we can’t miss a shout out to Dominique Ross, last week’s AM side winner giving her the chance to play today’s round with Paige, Sarah, and Val. Stay tuned for more coverage in the coming days, and don’t forget to swing by to witness the best disc golf in the world here at the 2017 Vibram Open at Maple Hill
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