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Orechwa golfs at state tourney

After four years of varsity golf, Eden’s Aaron Orechwa successfully qualified for the boy’s high school State Championship, played on June 1-2 at Cornell University.

“The campus, it felt like I was in a castle,” said Orechwa. “The course was really tricky. I played two practice rounds and probably could’ve played more.”

The senior fired a round of 77 at Diamond Hawk Golf Course during sectional qualifying last fall to solidify a spot in the two-day event.

The state championship, which featured the best public high school golfers in New York, was played in dry and difficult conditions. The teeth of the 6,800-yard golf course were it’s quick, and tricky greens. Orechwa finished in a tie for 71st with rounds of 83 and 89 to cap his high school career.

“I really enjoyed (my experience),” he said. “Everyone there could really play, it was just a matter of getting used to the course because it was really tricky. The greens were really tough.”

Orechwa finished fifth this past fall in the Erie County stroke average standings with a nine-hole average just above 39.

The Eden Raiders as a team won the ECIC Small Schools South division, accomplishing an undefeated record of 10-0 in league play for the second consecutive year.

Last summer, Orechwa also successfully qualified for the boys New York State individual championship at Skaneateles Country Club.

The 2014 Eden team MVP will continue his schooling, and golf career, at Methodist University in North Carolina, where he will enroll in the Professional Golf Management Program.

“I wanted to move somewhere warmer so that I could play all year,” he said. “I knew that I wanted to do a business degree, and looking into the program, that’s really what it is, with a concentration in golf. So I thought it was the perfect fit.”

Golf will continue to be a part of Orechwa’s life while he focuses on obtaining a degree at Methodist.

He has been a scholar athlete and an honor roll student at Eden since the seventh grade, and hopes to continue that success in the classroom by earning Dean’s List honors consistently.

Golf became a part of the Orechwa’s life when his father introduced it to him at a young age.

Greg Orechwa has been his playing partner and coach for over a decade and is very close with his son on and off the course.

Orechwa said he doesn’t like to get too technical with things, especially his swing, and has found that his dad provided just the right amount of balance that he needs to do to keep him happy playing the game that he loves.

“Ever since I was little, he got me into playing, taking me out to wherever he could,” Orechwa said. “He really wanted me to do as much as I could. He just really encouraged me to do what I love. He definitely supported me.”

Orechwa plans to play in some events this summer, including the Buffalo District boys’ stroke and match play events. He will play in those events before heading down south on Aug. 15 in hopes of trying out for the college team at Methodist.

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