Piercy and Highsmith lead Puerto Rico Open

Golfers on the PGA Tour find themselves in one of the rare weeks featuring two tournaments kicking off simultaneously

by Andrea Gussoni
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Piercy and Highsmith lead Puerto Rico Open
© Getty Images Sport - Mike Mulholland / Stringer

Golfers on the PGA Tour find themselves in one of the rare weeks featuring two tournaments kicking off simultaneously. While the Arnold Palmer Invitational unfolds in the United States, Puerto Rico hosts its own Open. Established in 2008 with a prize purse of $4 million, the Puerto Rico Open manages to attract top-tier golfers, as evidenced by those leading the leaderboard at the end of the first round.

Puerto Rico Open, results

Tied for the lead are Scott Piercy and Joe Highsmith, both Americans, closing the opening round with a score of -7 (65 strokes) and holding a one-stroke advantage over South African Garrick Higgo and Americans Brice Garnett, Erik Barnes, and Kevin Streelman.

Streelman, however, will have to complete the final 4 holes of the first round due to adverse weather conditions that first led to a suspension of play and then a definitive postponement. On the par 72 course of the Grand Reserve Country Club in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, closing the top ten in seventh place with a score of -5 are Japanese golfers Satoshi Kodaira and Ryo Hisatsune, Danish player Rasmus Hojgaard, German golfer Matti Schmid, Scottish player Martin Laird, Puerto Rican Rafael Campos, Filipino Rico Hoey, and Americans Richy Werenski and Norman Xiong.

The first-round leaderboard is expected to be reshuffled in the early afternoon. As for Italian golfer Domenico Geminiani, he was halted at the 12th hole. The twenty-seven-year-old Italian will resume his first round aiming to break free from par.

Today promises a double feature with the conclusion of the first round and the entirety of the second round. Puerto Rico also known as Portorico, is officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, an unincorporated territory of the United States located in the northeastern Caribbean Sea between the Dominican Republic and the Virgin Islands.

Following a popular referendum (termed "non-binding") in 2012, where 61.15% of the votes were in favor, the residents chose to become a federated state of the United States. Subsequent to this result (later confirmed by another electoral consultation held in 2017), an official request was filed with the United States Congress to initiate the legislative process that could transform the island into a state of the Union, a request that has not yet been approved.

Puerto Rico is an archipelago consisting of the main island of the same name (the smallest of the Greater Antilles) and other smaller islands, including Mona, Vieques, and Culebra. The capital is San Juan, which had nearly 848,000 inhabitants according to the 2000 census and reached 2,000,000 when considering the metropolitan area.

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