Derry Area’s Jurica captures WPIAL golf title

Jurica becomes the first Trojans golfer to capture a WPIAL title

Tue Oct 04, 2022 - 10:47PM

Sean Meyers Sean Meyers

Last Updated: Thu Oct 06, 2022 - 10:32AM

For the first time in the history of Derry Area, the Trojans have a WPIAL golf champion. Derry Area senior Hunter Jurica captured the WPIAL Class AA Boys Individual Championship on Tuesday at historic Oakmont Country Club, as he edged Brownsville Area’s Daniel Sethman to take first.

“It’s special, especially it being 36 holes, meaning I have to play well both rounds. It just means a lot to me,” Jurica said. “That still hasn’t set in yet. It’s so hard to understand. The Derry golf team has been around for so long and it’s crazy to say I’m the first one to win the WPIAL title. It’s almost unbelievable.”

With the title contested in a two-round format for the first time, Jurica and Sethman entered Tuesday tied for first, as they both shot a four-over-par 74 last Monday at Hannastown Golf Club in Greensburg last Monday.

Over the final 18 holes, though, Jurica carded a seven-over 78, finishing three strokes better than Sethman.

“I think there was probably six lead changes today between me and him. It was just back and forth all day,” Jurica said of the competition between him and the Falcons’ junior.

The difference occurred on the back nine, as Jurica compiled a score of 39, four shots better than Sethman. Liam Lohr of Carmichaels finished in third, one stroke behind Sethman.

After Jurica called his round during windy conditions at Hannastown “amazing”, the Trojans standout held his own at Oakmont, a course he had only played for the first time just a few weeks ago.

“After the round, I literally didn’t even realize what all happened, because I was so mentally drained from the round,” Jurica revealed.

Although his name is now etched in WPIAL history, Jurica has plenty of golf left to play this fall. He and his Trojans teammates will commence the WPIAL Class AA team competition next week. On an individual level, Jurica has qualified for the PIAA competition that will be held at Penn State University’s Blue Course beginning on Oct. 17.

Other Westmoreland County qualifiers for the state competition in Class AA include Greensburg Central Catholic senior Wade Boyle, junior Rogan Maloney of Belle Vernon Area, and Ligonier Valley senior Josh Harbert.