USWDGC is off and running!
September 20, 2019 by Jacob Wilkins and Christopher Wiklund in Preview with 0 comments
The United States Women’s Disc Golf Championship is underway in Spotsylvania, Virginia! The best Open Women’s division players in the U.S. and beyond will have the spotlight all to themselves at the most prestigious women’s only event in the world.
Paige Pierce has won the event three times — 2018, 2017, 2014 — and has only finished outside of the top three twice (a seventh place finish in 2013 and fifth in 2011). Given her performances over this season, there is no strong argument against her being the favorite to complete the three-peat and to become the first player with four Open division USWDGCs.
That being said, Pierce is coming off of a fourth place finish at the Green Mountain Championship where she finished 10 strokes back of Sarah Hokom.
To be frank, the Hokom of 2019 is not the player we have grown accustomed to watching over the course of her career, especially on the heels of a very good 2018. It would be unfair and silly to speculate the cause of her sub (by her) standard finishes, but it would be totally fair to look at her performance in Vermont as a positive sign of things to come down the home stretch of this season and into 2020. Hokom is a two-time USWDGC winner, with the 2016 and 2013 titles to her name, and, as her career record should make abundantly clear to anyone watching, has better than a puncher’s chance at taking the W.
Henna Blomroos and Evelina Salonen are not attending, which is surely disappointing. But the Europeans will have a strong contender present in Kristen Tattar.
Tattar has been playing exceptionally good golf on her North American tour, finishing no worse than second since arriving in late August. She is fresh off beating both Hokom and Pierce at the Canadian National Championship, and at GMC she finished smack between Hokom and Pierce, five back of Hokom and five ahead of Pierce.
The beginning of the 2019 season can sometimes feel like a lifetime ago, but let’s not forget how dominant Catrina Allen was for the first four months of the tour, and how well she has played overall. Allen has only missed the podium three times this season, has won three PDGA National Tour events, and outside of the Europeans, is the only one who has been able to consistently challenge Pierce’s dominance. Allen won the USWDGC in 2012 and 2010 and will be eager to end the drought.
FPO will play two courses over the weekend, Loriella Park and renowned Hawk Hollow. Both courses bring elevation and woods into play. Erica Johnson has high hopes for the courses.
“The courses look like they are set up with pars for the women to shoot under. Should be nice to see!” Johnson said. “A lot of the par 4s I think we will be seeing 3s from the top women. And there are definitely a handful of 2s out on both courses.”
Loriella Park: 7,189 feet, par 63
This course features a combination of more open field holes and tight wooded tunnel shots. Loriella is the shorter of the two courses, but will require players to control their discs throughout the entirety of the flight.
Hawk Hollow: 8,000 feet, par 65
This course is more a bomber-style course, featuring 11 par 4s, and six holes over 500 feet long. In fact, players will start their round with an 804-foot par 4 that tees off through a tight gap in the trees and then out into an open field. There is OB in some form on 16 holes.
High pressure will keep weather conditions great for the weekend! After a cooler Friday, warmer temperatures can be expected Saturday and Sunday. Meanwhile, the wind should remain mostly subdued for each round of the event.
- Friday: Calm conditions during the morning may gradually shift to a slight southerly wind. Temperatures at 10 AM around 65° will warm to the mid to upper 70s by the afternoon.
- Saturday: The center of high pressure moves south of the area. Southerly winds around 5 to 10 mph will lead to warmer conditions. Temperatures around 70° will warm to the mid 80s by the afternoon.
- Sunday: Southerly winds around 5 to 10 mph will once again lead to warm conditions. Afternoon highs in the mid to upper 80s will be likely.
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