Team Casalina - March

Team Casalina is for real! It's a family thing. You'll see what we mean after you read the interview we had with the three bothers (with some input from Dad being tossed in every now and then). First of all, we love seeing youth playing disc golf. Second, we love talking about disc golf and we assume you do as well. Third, we love seeing families playing disc golf together! This interview covers just about all of that and more! Enjoy and please share this to help bring more exposure to the youth side of the sport! These brothers are sponsored, have more aces than most golfers, and have become friends with some top touring professional disc golfers! Check it out!

From left to right: Cody, Nicholas, and Cory.

From left to right: Cody, Nicholas, and Cory.

KDG: Where are you guys from?

Cody: We are from Lancaster, Ohio originally, but we live in Florida.

KDG: How old are you guys?

Cody: 15
Cory: 12
Nicholas: 11

KDG: What’s your home course?

Cody: Blue Angel Recreational Park

KDG: Is that course mainly wooded or open fields?

Cory: Mainly woods…one or two fields.

KDG: Do you guys prefer throwing in the woods?

Cody: Yes, I like the woods cause’ it’s what I’m used to.
Cory: Woods, cause’ I feel more confident hitting my lines.
Nicholas: Woods, because I can work on my shots.

KDG: When did you guys start playing disc golf?

Cody: We all (including dad) started at the same time. [the Casalina brothers and dad conversed for a short period finally coming to an agreement about when they started playing] We started in Ohio in 2010.

KDG: Who taught you guys to play?

Cody: We all went out there and pretty much learned by ourselves.
Cory: Dad helped us a lot.
Cody: We were walking these nature trails and we kept hearing this “ching, ching, ching” and we walked around to see what it was. We asked some guys and they told us what it was, so we went to a gas station and got some discs, probably a Skeeter.

KDG: Where do you learn how to get better?

Cody: On the course, for me.
Cory: I don’t know. Dad did that putting practice thing outside. The Perfect Putt 360 App where you putt from 10, 15 feet, 20 feet, up to 30.
Cody: With putting, it’s my dad.
Cory: Same
Nicholas: Same.  Everything comes from my dad.

KDG: Do you guys watch YouTube videos of professionals explaining techniques?

Cory: I used to watch them all the time.
Cody: No, I try to find my own style.

KDG: How often do you practice?

Cody: Once or twice a week. I don’t get home until it’s dark.
Cory: No, I don’t practice. Cause’ I’m still like… cause’ Paige [Pierce]  told me that she does the same thing, that she doesn’t practice. Well, she has her own like, three times, she said she doesn’t practice leading into a tournament, but she will play the courses to get familiar.
Nicholas: Probably like once a week.

KDG: What’s your favorite disc/s?

Cody: Emac Truth
Cory: The Core
Nicholas: Air Halo

KDG: How often do you get out to play a round?

Cody: We try to get one round a week in.

KDG: Does that include tournaments?

Cody: We usually play about two tournaments a month.
Cody Casalina

Cody Casalina

KDG: Do you play the Junior/Youth tees if the course has them?

Nicholas:  I play the Am tees because I know I’ll do better, but not the pro tees because I know I’ll do bad.
Cory: Am tees, because if I played the youth tees, it would be unfair.
Cody: I like the challenge of the pro tees.

KDG: Do you like playing in tournaments?

Cory: Yes, cause’ I like the competition.
Cody: I’m pretty competitive so I like to play tournaments.
Nicholas: I like playing in tournaments because I like getting to meet more people.

KDG: How far can you guys throw? (We asked dad who was sitting off camera to verify the distances… ;-)

Cody: I think I can get one over 400, probably like 410-415, but my average drive is upper 300’s.
Nicholas: About 280-290 feet.
Cory: 320-330ft.

KDG: Can any of you guys throw a 360?

Cory & Nicholas: CODY!
Cory: He [Cory] did it in a tournament once and almost aced!

KDG: What is your putting style? Do you straddle or straight putt mainly?

Cody: Kinda straight... a little offset.
Cory: Kinda like the same as Cody. I think that’s all of us [he looked for agreement from his brothers]
Nicholas: Yeah, that’s the same with me.
Cory: I curl my wrist too, whenever I putt, and like, watch it.

KDG: Who thinks they are the better putter in the room?

Cory: [Raised his hand quickly]
Cody: Well, our dad is in the ROOM, he’d be the best putter.

KDG: Do any of you ever straddle putt?

Cody: I think only if we have to.
Cory: I can only get it to like 15 feet.

KDG: Who is your favorite disc golf manufacturer?

Cody: Latitude 64, of course, because they produce the best discs.
Cory: L64.

KDG: Why?

Cory: They are my sponsor.

KDG: Are you glad they’re your sponsor?

Cory: Yeah! I threw a lot of prodigy before I got sponsored, and then I tried Cory’s discs.
Cory Casalina

Cory Casalina

KDG: How about you Nicholas? Who is your favorite manufacturer?

Nicholas: Dynamic Discs, because I feel that they treat the members equally, and because they’re my sponsor.

KDG: Who are your favorite professionals?

Nicholas:  Probably Madison Walker because she’s so fun to play with and hang out with.
Cory: Ricky Wysocki. I’m not sure why, but he’s just been my favorite for a long time, even before he was sponsored by Latitude.
Cody: Paige Pierce…because she’s helped me out the most. If I need help with anything I just ask her.

KDG: What do you do, just call her [Paige Pierce] up?

Cody: Yeah, I text her.

KDG: So we know who your favorite professional disc golfer is, but Cody, because your favorite professional is a FPO player, can we also ask who’s your favorite MPO player?

Cody: Cam Colglaizer…Well, I get to watch him play, because usually whatever tournament we’re going to, he’s probably there.

KDG: Nicholas, who is your favorite MPO player?

Nicholas: Probably Eagle McMahon.

KDG: Cory, because you had an MPO player as your favorite can we ask who’s your favorite FPO player?

Cory: Paige Pierce. Even when we’re not playing disc golf, she’s fun to hang out with…she’s just awesome.
Cody: We met Paige from Madison because she lives here [Pensicola, FL]. We met up with them one day and we played a round together. They caddied for us at Am Worlds last year [2016].
Cory: I met her two years ago at Am Worlds when I was practicing putting. She met me and Nick.

KDG: What else do you guys like to do when you’re not disc golfing?

Nicholas: Fishing.

KDG: Cory, how about you?

Cory: … [Nicholas chimes in answering with “Video Games” for Cory] I like Skateboarding, baseball, and whatever. [Dad, who is off camera says “Video Games” adding to Cory’s list].
Cody: Fishing and baseball. I play baseball for my high school.

KDG: Which do you like more? Disc Golf or Baseball?

Cory & Nicholas: Disc Golf!
Cody: Baseball

KDG: Do you want to play any big tournaments this year?

Cory: Yes, but not as big as Worlds. We aren’t going to Worlds this year. [Dad inserts that plan to attend Am Worlds this year is up in the air due to scheduling constraints]

KDG: Did you hear that Junior Worlds will be a stand-alone event in 2018? Are you excited about this?

Cody: I guess, like whenever you hear Am Worlds, all you hear of is “Isaac, Isaac, Isaac” [previous winners name] so it will be good to promote the winners I guess for the juniors.

KDG: Are you guys a member of any clubs or organizations?

Cory: Emerald Coast Disc Golf.
Cody: You can buy a membership for Emerald Coast Disc Golf and get a tag, a disc, and water bottle. Or you can pay $10 just to get the tag.
Cory: We do beginning of the year bag tag matches and at the end of the year. We had over 100 members at the beginning round. Dad’s the president of the Emerald Coast Disc Golf Club.

KDG: Do you have any sponsorships you’d like to tell us about?

Cody: Besides L64 I’m sponsored by “Hand Eye Supply”.
Cory: They are like a local sponsor.
Nicholas: Does my dad count?
Cory: No, WE sponsor him!
Dad: They give me 10 discs out of each allotment. They hook me up!

KDG: Do you hope to be professional one day and play in the big pro events?

Nicholas: Yes.
Cory: Yes.
Cody: I don’t really want to become a touring pro, I guess. I still want to play disc golf for fun, but not as a career.

KDG: Cody, you had mentioned like baseball earlier. Do you want to be a professional Baseball athlete?

Cody: YES

KDG: You all have competed in Am Worlds. I’m kind of a nerd when it comes to numbers and statistics. I looked at how the rounds seemed to play out for all of you and there are some interesting things to note. For instance, it shows Cory as finishing in 2nd but having the same stroke count as first place. Cory, is this because you had to play in a playoff at WORLDS?

Cory: Yes, I was nervous, super nervous. Paige [Pierce] told me not to turn around because there was a big ol’ crowd behind us. She would put her hands over my eyes so I wouldn’t see where he landed. I was 12 and was competing in the 13 and younger division.

KDG: Cody and Nicholas, how old were you when you competed at Worlds?

Cody:  14 and I played in the 16 and under.
Nicholas: I was 10.
Cody: Cory had an ace during the round at Am Worlds. So did our dad, during the first or second round. I’m the only one without an ace at Am Worlds! Nicholas got one a few years ago.

KDG: That is some cool stuff! Do you guys prefer playing with other junior aged players?

Cody: That’s an interesting question….juniors. I mean, I don’t ever play with other juniors, though, I play with adults.
Cory: It depends. There are kids that don’t know what they are doing, I tell them “shh!” “be quiet”, but adults, they can do the same thing. I’d rather play with a kid that’s pretty good. It would be, like, more comfortable.
Nicholas: Probably kids because I could talk to them and know what they are talking about.

KDG: Nick, what kind of things do kids talk about that adults don’t understand?

Nicholas: Video games, school, I don’t know…
Nicholas Casalina

Nicholas Casalina

KDG: Why do you guys like Disc Golf?

Cody: It’s like another hobby. It’s something fun to do.
Cory: It’s really fun, and it’s something to do instead of just sitting here…they thought I was going to say I like video games 24-7.
Nicholas: Because it can take me out of the house most of the time.
Dad: It gives us all four something to do together.
Cody: Me, Nick, and my Dad like to go fishing, Cory doesn’t like fishing.
Nicholas: And you and Dad like baseball, and I don’t.

KDG: What would you guys tell someone who has never heard of Disc Golf before? Why should they play?

Cory: Well, it’s good exercise cause’ you walk everywhere.
Nicholas: It’s something fun to do besides video games.
Cody: It’s just FUN

KDG: What’s one course you’ve heard of or has seen on YouTube that you would love to play if you had the chance?

Cory: It’s played every year…ummm… USDGC course…. Winthrop Gold!
Nicholas: I don’t know the names! Madison played it and there is water everywhere.
Cory: Nick, does it have a big ol’ fountain that goes “whoosh!”? That’s the Memorial at Fountain Hills!
Nicholas: YES!
Cody: The course I’m thinking of is the one where Nikko Locastro aced it over the water. I think a lot of people aced it. Maple Hill!

KDG: Do you guys have any aces besides the Am Worlds aces we already heard about?

Cody: I have 19 aces. [he asked his dad how many aces he had and then added one more because he knew he had one more than his dad]

KDG: How far do you think you furthest ace was?

Cody: Probably like high 200’s

KDG: How about your aces Cory?

Nicholas: Cory has 7 causeI have 6.
Cory: Ya, how many does Paige have? Cause’ I was 2 away from Paige when I was at Worlds, and then I aced. So 8! My furthest ace was like….
Cody: His furthest ace was like 288 or something like that.
Nicholas: I have 6 aces. My furthest ace was probably close to 300ft. But it’s downhill, so like 280. [they noted together that it was an impressive ace and was his first throw of the day]. Ya, when I was practicing I kept hitting trees.

KDG: Do you have any pictures with touring pros?

Cody, Cory, Nicholas: Paige, Paul, Madison, Feldberg, Schusterick, Colglaizer, and DAD he plays pro masters!

KDG: What weight discs are you guys throwing?

Nicholas: 170’s
Cody: No, he throws Air Plastics so like 150-160.
Cory: 160-165g
Cody: I thow all max weight.

KDG: Do you guys sidearm/forehand or backhand most or does it just depend?

Cody: It just depends on the hole.

KDG: If you were just in the middle of a wide open field, what is your go-to throw?

Cody: Oh! Backhand.
Nicholas: Backhand.
Cory: Backhand.

KDG: Is that how you guys started throwing?

Cory: Me and Nick started forehand. Dad and Cody started backhand. Every time I had my backhand mastered, and wanted to work on my forehand, I would lose my backhand again…I was like “Dang it, I got to get it back again!”

KDG: Why do you think you guys are so good? Did you all take off really fast?

Cory: We all started out awful.
Cody: Cory was first, but he didn’t want to play for a couple months, then I didn’t want to play for a couple months, then last year it was Nick, he didn’t want to play for a couple months…but now we are all back in to it.

KDG: Did having brothers to play with help you get better quicker?

Nicholas: Yes.
Cory: Yes.
Cody: Yes.
Cory: Dad kept on saying, “come on, come on”
Cody: Say my dad didn’t like disc golf, we wouldn’t be going out so much. If we are on the same card, it’s pretty bad. We trash talk each other. Sometimes he wants to fight me on the course [said while pointing to Cory].

KDG: Is there anything you would like to tell other junior aged players out there?

Cory: Don’t get mad, cause’ everyone has that problem. You getting mad isn’t going to help it. I definitely have that problem. I’m sitting here telling you guys not to get mad but I get mad.
Cody: Stick to it!
Nicholas: Cory, you took the thing I was going to say…now I have to think of something else….Probably PRACTICE if you want to get better. That’s how it works.

As we mentioned in our opening paragraph, be sure to share this interview to help gain exposure for youth disc golf. Also, it will help encourage and bring exposure to this awesome disc golf family who is doing a lot to make this sport even better! You can follow Team Casalina on Facebook here >>>>> Team Casalina

UPDATE: Since speaking with the Casalina brothers, Nicholas has thrown another ace! Keep it up boys!

Matt Grayum