WPIAL golfers eye golden finish at PIAA championships

Sunday, October 17, 2021 | 8:39 PM

Winning a WPIAL golf championship is big but not the biggest award in the state.

Penn-Trafford sophomore Nick Turowski said he was thrilled to win his first WPIAL Class 3A on Oct. 4, but now his eyes are set on winning a PIAA title.

He’s not alone: The 47 other golfers from the WPIAL competing Monday and Tuesday at Heritage Hills Golf Resort in York also are seeking state gold.

The PIAA, which used to hold a 36-hole event, shortened to 18 holes for the second consecutive season. Class 2A boys and girls play Monday, and Class 3A goes on Tuesday. The PIAA team tournament is Oct. 25 at Heritage Hills.

“Winning the WPIAL was one of my goals,” Turowski said. “Now I want to win a PIAA gold medal. Hopefully, I play well, like I did a Nemacolin Country Club.”

Turowski and Central Catholic junior Rocco Salvitti were in a close battle in the WPIAL championship until the final four holes. That’s where Turowski pulled away.

Salvitti said when he realized Turowski was going to win, his thoughts shifted to the state tournament. Salvitti, arguably one of the top junior golfers in the Western Pennsylvania, is looking to win his first state title. This is his third attempt in the state tournament.

“Not winning the WPIAL is not a big deal,” Salvitti said. “The state title is the bigger deal.”

Eden Christian’s Brian McDonnell was excited to win the Class 2A title. Now he’s focused on playing his best at York.

Frazier sophomore Nixen Erdely wants his first trip to York be a memorable one. His dad, Roger, the Westmoreland County Senior Amateur champion, took him to Heritage Hills a couple of times the past few weeks to get familiar with the course.

“I want to win,” Nixen Erdely said. “That’s the mindset you should have when you play in an event.”

Quaker Valley junior Ava Bulger has won three WPIAL Class 2A titles. She is looking for her first title.

Two girls she must contend with are Northeast’s Lydia Swan and Greensburg Central Catholic’s Meghan Zambruno, one of four Centurions in the field. The others are Ella Zambruno, Izzy Aigner and Olivia Kana.

South Fayette junior Marissa Malosh must contend with West Chester East’s Victoria Kim and Wissahickon’s Elizabeth Beek.

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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