PVHS senior Ayush Patel made PV boys golf history on Sep. 26 by winning the PAC individual championship with a score of 76 and a birdie in the first playoff hole. Patel’s victory serves as the first PAC individual championship for a PV golfer in 20 years.
In a misty afternoon filled with stress, stiff competition and mud, Patel rallied to a score of 76 after 18 regulation holes, giving him a three-way tie for the title with Methacton’s Matthew Rieger and Spring-Ford’s Lucas Kozak. In a decisive playoff hole between the three, Patel managed a birdie to secure the title of PAC individual champion.
This win comes after Patel spent all four of his high school years as a varsity golf player, with three years of qualifying for the district tournament.
“It was great to see somebody like him have all of his hard work come to fruition and be the league champion individually,” Tavio Hunsicker, Boys Golf Varsity Head Coach, said. “He’s been a pleasure to have on the team. He’s an excellent golfer and more importantly an excellent student and person. It was a great cherry on top of his high school career.”
Patel plays golf almost daily and year-round, all while maintaining a 4.0 GPA and a rigorous course load of Advanced Placement and dual enrollment classes at Ursinus College. This work ethic is something that Patel plans to use for his future aspirations, both academically and athletically.
“During the spring I was working on the range and playing 9 [holes] after school daily. Then I played 18 hole tournaments on the weekends. Over the summer I was at the course every day, teeing off at 8:00 AM on weekdays, getting done, going to the range, and playing another 9 if I had time.” Patel said of his intense golfing workload. “I’m very proud of my work ethic as I put in a lot of hours over the course of the last 4 years and it has all paid off. I worked hard to be successful and I’m going to keep working hard to be even more successful” Patel said.
In addition to this individual achievement, Patel is incredibly grateful for the love and support of his teammates throughout his high school career. “I couldn’t have done it without the support of my teammates and coaches, it was great to see them supporting me not only that day but every day of my high school career,” Patel said.
With this win, Patel became the first PAC individual champion from PVHS since Tony Perla in 2003. Perla, a PV graduate and two-time PAC individual champion, attended Northwood University (now Keiser University) in West Palm Beach, FL, after which he pursued a professional golf career.
As for Patel, he has remained focused on what is to come next this year, such as the District 1 Championship on Oct. 9. Unlike Perla, he has no professional golf aspirations, but he does plan on playing in college.
“My goal is to make the state tournament. I’ve been just shy of states every year and I want to finally achieve it. I also hope to help the team and perform well in team districts. I do hope to be able to play in college. I’m hoping to play [NCAA Division 3] at Carnegie Mellon University, but if not, then club golf.”
After high school, Patel plans to study engineering and pursue a career as an engineer. No matter what path he chooses, he can now call himself a PAC champion.