Disc Golf Tournament Profiles: MVP Open At Maple Hill

Jacob Arvidson avatar
Jacob ArvidsonContributor
Sep 26 • 4 min read
A view from far behind a tee pad with two large flower pots at its back edges. A person drives from the tee pad
Tee of hole 11 at one of the most anticipated tour stops all year for pros and fans alike: Maple Hill Disc Golf Course. Photo: Disc Golf Pro Tour

After months of visiting some of the best courses in the country, the Disc Golf Pro Tour finally hit the cream of the crop.

Maple Hill is the best disc golf course in the world, and it also annually hosts one of the most exciting disc golf tournaments in existence, which has been known as the MVP Open since 2018. In 2022, the top players in the land converged to tackle the legendary New England track from September 22-25.

With its varied terrain, water hazards, plentiful woods, and diversity of fairway shapes and lengths, Maple Hill is designed to expose any weakness in a player's game, be it distance, accuracy, or touch. The winner always needs mental composure and all the shot shapes to take home a coveted win at the course.

Learn more about the MVP Open at Maple Hill (click/tap any bullet point to jump to that info):

2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill Scores & Stats

You can find shot-by-shot scores, stats, and more for the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill on UDisc Live.

Who Won the 2021 MVP Open at Maple Hill?

Simon Lizotte (16-under par) and Natalie Ryan (1-over par) won the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill in MPO and FPO, respectively.

You can find individual scores on every hole, in-depth stats, and more at the UDisc Live results page for the 2022 MVP Open.

MPO
Who won the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill?

Simon Lizotte with a score of 16-under par

Who came in second and third at the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill?

2nd  Corey Ellis with a score of 15-under par

3rd Paul McBeth and Gannon Buhr with scores of 14-under par

FPO
Who won the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill in FPO?

Natalie Ryan with a score of 1-over par (playoff win)

Who came in second and third at the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill FPO?

2nd Kristin Tattar with a score of 1-over par

3rd Paige Pierce with a score of 2-over par

2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill Disc Golf Tournament Winning Probabilities

Prior to the start of the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill, these are the players UDisc Live's pro disc golf Win Probability model gave at least a 2% chance to win in MPO and FPO:

Win Probability Before Event Player: MPO Actual Finish at 2022 MVP Open
  Win Probability Before Event Player: FPO World Ranking Prior to 2022 MVP Open
17% Paul McBeth T3 51% Kristin Tattar 2
14% Chris Dickerson T42 15% Paige Pierce 3
12% Ricky Wysocki T6 8% Catrina Allen T13
11% Matt Orum T35 7% Ohn Scoggins T6
10% Calvin Heimburg T26 5% Eveliina Salonen T6
7% Gannon Buhr T3 4% Valerie Mandujano T11
4% Kyle Klein T6 3% Missy Gannon 4
4% Isaac Robinson T30 2% Henna Blomroos T9
3% Simon Lizotte 1
2% Anthony Barela T30
2% Niklas Anttila T13
2% Kevin Jones T58
2% James Conrad T13
2% Joel Freeman T11

On mobile, swipe left/right to see all columns.

These percentages were created prior to the start of the event and will change dramatically as the event plays out. To see how, click or tap the Win Probability tab at the top of UDisc Live.

Note that Win Probability doesn't always match up with Disc Golf World Ranking because Win Probability takes into account how players have historically performed on holes of specific distances and difficulty and compares that information just to holes they'll face at a single event. That means the numbers above related to how players' historical performances suggested they'd do just at the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill whereas World Ranking is a broader assessment of past performance.

MVP Open at Maple Hill Tournament History

A man in circle rim glasses laughing in the middle of a crowd at a disc golf event
Steve Dodge (center), DGPT founder and original majority owner and part owner and designer of Maple Hill, at the 2016 Vibram Open laughing while chatting with pro Cale Leiviska (right of Dodge). Photo: DGPT

The Maple Hill disc golf course opened in 2002 and has hosted a big tournament since 2004 that has steadily grown in attendance and esteem. The event started out as the Marshall Street Disc Golf Championship and was founded by Steve Dodge along with his cousin Jason Southwick and Joe Proud. In 2008, Dodge took over the tournament and Southwick took control of Marshall Street Disc Golf, a disc golf shop located right around the corner from Maple Hill.

Dodge managed Vibram's former disc golf operations for many years, and the event at Maple Hill was long known as the Vibram Open. When Vibram left the sport, disc golf equipment manufacturer MVP picked up the title sponsor role.

No matter what the tournament has been called, it has been been a tour stop pros have looked forward to hitting almost since its inception. Part of the reason for this has to do with how the event is held on an idyllic, privately-owned expanse of New England countryside – which is also a Christmas tree farm – that has been in Dodge's family for generations. It's a picturesque backdrop for the many side events and games (distance contests, putting contests, table tennis, darts, skeeball, and more) that are the norm at Maple Hill events.

A young woman in a white hat is very seriously playing air hockey
Five-time World Champion Paige Pierce playing air hockey in Maple Hill's game room during the 2018 MVP Open. Photo: DGPT

"Everything in and around the tournament happens on the farm," tournament director Steve Dodge said. "You can show up, play your round, and just relax and have fun with all of the other players, spectators, and staff. It's just a great big family, on a family farm, having fun and competing at a very high level."

Along with the warm atmosphere carefully crafted to suit the tastes and interests of disc golfers, the course itself has always been the other main draw for competitors. Maple Hill was designed to be one of the world's best courses from the very start and was actually the best in 2021 and 2022. The property has terrain and obstacles course designers dream of, and the design exploits that potential to its fullest. To learn more about what this special course is like and its history, give our feature piece, "World's Best Disc Golf Courses: Maple Hill," a read.

The event also has a unique place in recent disc golf history: the 2016 Vibram Open at Maple Hill was the first DGPT event ever held. Newer disc golf fans may not know that Dodge founded the DGPT and ran and owned the majority stake in it until late 2019. So when he launched the DGPT in 2016, it was a no-brainer to kick the new venture off at his own well-loved course and event. You can learn more about this part of the DGPT's early years in the first of our three-part series on DGPT history.

Because the location and tournament are so renowned, nearly every top disc golfer attends the annual competition at Maple Hill. This has contributed to the feeling in recent years that a win at Maple Hill means a lot more than a win at most other venues. Getting the W in Massachusetts isn't quite earning a Worlds or a U.S. Disc Golf Championship title, but in many players and fans' eyes, it's not far off.

What Does It Mean That the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill Was a DGPT Playoff Event?

The 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill was a playoff both because players had to qualify to compete in it and it was one of just two more chances players had to earn 2022 tour points, which affect qualification and seeding in the DGPT Championship (as well as end-of-season awards calculations). Additionally, DGPT playoff events award 25% more points than typical Elite Series competitions.

The field was capped at 88 MPO and 44 FPO competitors. Only the top 72 MPO players and 36 FPO players in DGPT tour points immediately qualified for registration. Other competitors earned a spot based on a regional qualifier, week-of qualifier, or an exemption granted by MVP Open or DGPT staff.

2022 is the first year the DGPT has had playoff events.

Past Highlights at Maple Hill Disc Golf Tournaments

Here are some of the standout moments from past competitions at Maple Hill.

2012: Hokom-Jenkins-Allen Battle

In 2012, Sarah Hokom, the reigning World Champion, and Valarie Jenkins, a three-time World Champion, sat on top of the leaderboard after three rounds at the 2012 Vibram Open. Trailing the two stars by one stroke was a woman by the name of Catrina Allen, who had secured her first National Tour win just two months before.

The three women would go shot for shot for the majority of the round, wowing the crowd with a three-way battle. By the time they reached hole 18, Allen and Jenkins sat on top, with a two-stroke advantage on Hokom. The small, OB-encircled green of hole 18 at Maple Hill meant it was still far from over.

Watch this clip from The Disc Golf Guy as Terry Miller and Allen break down the last hole.

2013: McBeth Breaks 50 and Earns 1121 Rating

It was a common belief in 2013 that no one would be able to break a score of 50 at Maple Hill (par at the time was 59). But Paul McBeth doesn't really believe in limits when it comes to disc golf. That year, McBeth shattered the 50 threshold by shooting a 14-under par 45, helping him win the event by 13 strokes over top-notch competition.

McBeth's efforts earned a PDGA rating of 1121, making it one of the highest-rated rounds of all time. For context, his two 18-unders were rated 1108 (2018 GLO) and 1098 (2019 WACO).

You can see some highlights of the round captured by The Disc Golf Guy:


2016: Bradley Williams Wins First-Ever DGPT Event Amid Chipmunkgate

The 2016 Vibram Open field featured most of the top players in the world at the time. World Champions Paul McBeth and Nate Doss were there. USDGC Champions Nikko Locastro, Steve Brinster, and Will Schusterick were there. Future USDGC Champions Nate Sexton and Jeremy Koling were there. And Ricky Wysocki, who would win his first Worlds six weeks later, was there, too.

All of those stars were rated higher than Bradley Williams. But after four rounds at Maple Hill, Williams was the last man standing.

It was Michael Johansen, Cale Leiviska, and Williams who separated themselves from the field. All three entered hole 18 of the final round deadlocked at 27-under par.

Leiviska found the foliage on the left side of the fairway off the tee and settled for a par while Johansen and Williams earned drop-in birdies. Leiviska finished third, but Williams and Johansen headed for a playoff.

The playoff was held on the par 4 hole 1 and par 3 hole 2 in a loop until one player finished a hole in fewer strokes. Both players birdied hole 1 and parred hole 2 during the first loop. Returning to hole 1, Johansen executed a great tee shot while Williams flipped his over to the right, leaving him among Christmas trees and with a tough approach to the OB-surrounded green.

Johansen's tee shot was still farther from the basket than Williams', so he threw first. His shot was a bit to the right but appeared to be tracking so that it would hit the front of a stone wall that marked OB and stop safe. However, it took a very unusual skip and went OB. Watch below in footage from Prodigy Disc:



If you listen, you'll hear Johansen say, "That was weird. Whatever."

It turns out that skip definitely had a "weird" origin. In an extremely strange twist of fate, it seemed Johansen's disc had been helped out of bounds by...a chipmunk.

That OB allowed Williams to play just for par from his awkward position and assure he'd get to continue at least through another playoff hole. When Johansen missed his long-range putt from the wall to save par, Williams tapped in for the win. Since the Vibram Open that year was both an NT and a Disc Golf Pro Tour event (a combo that never happened again), Williams took his first wins for both types of events at that tournament. He also sealed his place in history as the winner of the first DGPT event ever held.

2017 Pierce Comeback

Valarie Jenkins was well in control after three rounds at the 2017 Vibram Open. She had shot the hot round twice and entered the final round with a six-stroke lead over Paige Pierce and a seven-stroke lead over Catrina Allen. All she needed was to coast to victory.

But during the final round, the rain started coming down and the bogeys began piling up for Jenkins. She struggled to grip her discs and wasn't able to find a birdie until hole 8 when she was already six strokes over par for the day. One hole later she gave her gained stroke right back and Pierce was sitting there waiting.

It wasn't until hole 13 that Pierce gained the outright lead, but the writing was on the wall. The rain clearly didn't have the same impact on Pierce as it did on the rest of the Open Women field. As Jenkins struggled for control, it was Pierce who ultimately did the coasting to the finish line. She won by a shocking four strokes to cap off a 10-stroke swing during the final round.

This birdie putt from the edge of Circle 1 on the difficult hole 4 green was the moment that swung the momentum in Pierce's favor:

Pierce eventually clawed her way into the lead. Her clutch layup on hole 17 and Jenkins' missed opportunity all but wrapped up the tournament:

How to Watch the 2022 MVP Open at Maple Hill

MPO FPO Paid subscription needed?
Live (also available as archived footage) Disc Golf Network Same Yes (except last round, which is free on the Disc Golf Pro Tour's YouTube channel)
Lead Cards - Condensed JomezPro GK Pro No
Chase Cards - Condensed Gatekeeper Media No

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