By Gideon Rubin
Aaron Strockis may not be Torrey Pines High’s most talented golfer, and he’s definitely not the most experienced.
But it’s hard to imagine anybody on the team who can match his determination.
Strockis was a latecomer to the sport. He didn’t even start taking lessons until he was in eighth grade, when he got swept up in the excitement surrounding Torrey Pines Golf Course playing host to the 2008 U.S. Open.
He took his energy, enthusiasm, and some of the athletic skill he developed playing Little League to his new venture.
“The determination is incredible,” Drake said. “He set a goal for himself and the goal wasn’t just to make the team, the goal was to make the postseason and he did everything he could do to achieve it.”
With less than a year of lessons under his belt, Strockis went out for the intensely competitive Falcons team his freshman year and missed the cut by one stroke.
He continued working on his game but again missed the cut by the same margin his sophomore year.
“You have to draw the line somewhere and, unfortunately, he was on the other side of the line,” Torrey Pines coach Chris Drake said.
Earlier this year, Strockis didn’t just cross the line, he obliterated it.
On a team of over 20 golfers, he surpassed more established teammates, some of whom have since committed to Division I colleges, on his way to becoming among the top six golfers on one of the state’s most perennially dominant programs.
Strockis believes his baseball background benefitted his golf game.
“Some of the athletic moves are similar,” Strockis said. “It was an easier transition for me, comparatively speaking, than if I’d played football or soccer or something like that.”
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