Westmoreland athletes of the week: Greensburg Central Catholic’s Izzy Aigner, Hempfield’s Owen Dzurko

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Saturday, September 17, 2022 | 7:56 PM


Izzy Aigner

School: Greensburg Central Catholic

Sport: Golf

Year: Junior

Claim to fame: In nine rounds this season, Aigner is averaging 35 strokes for Greensburg Central Catholic.

The recent champion of the Westmoreland County Coaches Association Championship with a 1-under-par 36 at Champion Lakes Golf Course, Aigner has finished under par in six nine-hole rounds, including a 4-under 32 in a 169-232 win over Derry at rain-soaked Latrobe Elks Golf Club.

She has a pair of 34s at Mt. Odin, the Centurions’ home course.

Aigner is 8-under in section matches.

She shot 35 on Friday as GCC avenged a loss to Mt. Pleasant with a 184-195 win at home.

For her efforts, Aigner is the Trib Westmoreland Girls Athlete of the Week.

Lily Fenton of Latrobe volleyball, Amelia Williams of Penn-Trafford tennis, cross country runner Jane Huss of Derry, and Robin Reilly of Latrobe soccer also were considered.

What did winning the WCCA tournament tell you about the state of your game?

It showed me that my game from last year has improved by a lot. My hard work throughout the summer is coming together. It has helped my game to be more consistent going into the high school season.

Where did you put your championship medal?

I have it hanging in my room with my others medals from high school.

What has it been like playing for a dynasty program (seven straight WPIAL titles)?

It’s been truly amazing playing the last two years with a dedicated team. Winning WPIALs isn’t something everyone can experience. I was honored with the opportunity.

What is your pre-shot routine?

First I laser how far I am away, choose my club, take two practice swings, relax, take a deep breath to let my mind clear, line up and fire away.

Do you have a favorite club in your bag?

I like my 58-degree wedge. I know every time it will go 80 yards. I can normally hit it close to birdie from there.

Have you ever had a hole-in-one?

I have actually never had one, but I have come very close though. One day I will. I have witnessed a hole-in-one, though.

You use the same purple Sharpie to label your ball?

I have used the same color Sharpie for three years.

What is the best golf course you have ever played?

I love the Magnolia course in Disney. It always brings back memories.

What is your dream course to play?

The one course I would absolutely love to play is St. Andrews Links Old Course. I have always wanted to play a links course, what’s better than there?

Who is the best high school golfer you ever saw play?

Meghan Zambruno. I loved playing with her. She has taught me so much these past two years. I love her to death and hope to see her play soon.

Your home course starts with three par-5s. Do you like that about Mt. Odin?

Yes, I think it’s an advantage for us. When the other team comes to play it’s a harder challenge to start your round with.

What pro of celebrity would you most like to play 18 holes with?

I would like to play with Justin Thomas. He is so relatable when he plays, talking to the ball and just enjoys being there overall.

Who is your favorite pro athlete?

Nelly Korda, and her sister, Jessica. I think they are an outstanding team together. They are always fun to watch play.

Any pro/celebrity autographs?

I have autographs from the 2016 U.S. Open, the Solheim Cup team in 2021, and the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

What other sport are you quietly good at?

I wouldn’t say I am great at it, but I do play lacrosse for the school.

Owen Dzurko

School: Hempfield

Sport: Golf

Class: Senior

Claim to fame: Dzurko shot a 3-under 32 at Greensburg Country Club, a school record at the course, and helped Hempfield defeat Penn-Trafford, 190-213, in the Section 2 (3A) match.

It was the lowest score a Hempfield team had recorded at Greensburg Country Club after the closure of Valley Green Golf Course in 2019.

He began his round with a chip-in eagle on No. 1.

The Spartans, after a slow start, has ripped off five consecutive wins to improve their record to 5-4. The Spartans are in position to qualify for the WPIAL team tournament.

“Owen has been playing our No. 1 all season,” Hempfield coach Bryan Spang said. “He has the team’s second-lowest average (40.22).

“We have a balanced squad, and he’s been one of the keys to the team’s late season surge.”

What is your most memorable moment in golf?

That (eagle against Penn-Trafford is) the most memorable moment of my golf career. I had an eagle and three birdies on the front nine at Greensburg Country Club. After I chipped in, it gave me a boost of confidence.

What are your goals for the season?

I want to qualify for individuals and go as far as I can. I want to win our last match to qualify for the playoffs and keep getting better at golf.

What turned your season around?

When we beat Norwin at Youghiogheny, and it gave us confidence. It showed us we can win anywhere. After that we had the confidence that we knew we could do well.

What is your college future?

I would love to play golf in college. It would be a lot of fun and get a good education. It would be worth it to get a scholarship. I don’t have a preference, someplace local.

What golf course would you love to play that you haven’t?

Laurel Valley is the course I’d love to play. Everyone knows the history, and I’d love to get a chance to play there.

What is the strength of your game?

I’d feel my strength it my putting. It usually saves me. When I shot 3-under, I only had 10 putts. I feel confidence with my putter in my hand.

If you could pick a partner to participate with, who would it be?

Probably Tiger Woods because he’s the best in the world. I’d love to talk to him about his experiences and about golf and learn from him.

Who is your favorite golfer?

Tiger Woods because he’s won so many things. He’s played incredible golf and done incredible things. I like watching him on TV.

Brand of golf ball you play?

Titleist, ProV 1

What is your favorite club in your bag?

It is my hybrid. I know I can hit it anything and hit it anywhere. I’m confident with it in my hands.

What do you think of the new LIV Tour?

I don’t have a hard opinion. I think its fun, but I don’t like the hate between the golfers.

What’s your favorite meal?

I’d like any good steakhouse. I love steak.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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