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Saturday, September 23, 2023
Sports: Aced it: Six-year-old golfer scores hole-in-one
Kohen Barszcz had a hole-in-one on the 113-yard sixth hole at Eagle Valley last week. SUPPLIED

Six-year-old Kohen Barszcz loves playing golf.

And after last week, he’s loving it a whole lot more.

The youngster accomplished something that very few people of any age can brag about — he notched a hole-in-one.

Playing Tuesday at Eagle Valley Golf Club near St. Davids, the diminutive player stepped up to the tee on the 113-yard par-3 sixth hole.

Using his driver, he plunked his tee shot onto the green and into the hole. A “slam dunk” directly into the hole.

Kohen, who was attending golf camp at the club, realized it was a good shot but wasn’t able to see it drop in the cup, however.

“He knew it hit the green but was unsure if it went in,” his mother Kristen Barszcz told The Lake Report.

“His big brother Jackson, who is eight, was also golfing with him, asking him, ‘Did it go in?’ while another camper said, “A kid just hit a hole in one!”

“All the kids in his group couldn’t believe it,” she said.

Eagle Valley head pro John Piccolo said in his 24 years at the club this is the first time any camper has aced a hole and Kohen is “likely the youngest ever at Eagle Valley, period.”

All the staff and coaches were impressed.

Junior coach Vincent Friyia noted the club teaches more than 300 campers annually.

The hole-in-one was witnessed by one of the club’s coaches, Ben Hebert, “and the celebration was heard by all of the campers around the front nine,” Friyia said.

Hebert added, “It was fun to see Kohen, who is arguably one of the best six-year-old golfers I’ve ever seen, make such a monumental accomplishment that every golfer strives to achieve once in their lifetime.”

Friyia said all the coaches were impressed by how developed Kohen’s game is, “especially his ball-striking abilities.”

“After his hole-in-one on Tuesday he routinely had birdie chances throughout the rest of the week. The other campers, most four to five years older, were in awe of the little guy hitting seemingly everything in the sweet spot.”

Teaching pro Travis Glass, who got his first hole-in-one at #9 at Eagle Valley when he was 13, noted, “The excitement all the kids got with Kohen’s ace is one of the great parts of the game.”

“He was the one who hit the shot but all the kids loved being a part of it and even telling the story later to their parents.”

Mom Kristen grew up in Niagara-on-the-Lake and her parents George and Debbie Enns still live here.

So do Kohen’s great-great aunt and uncle, George and Nancy Nichols – and the whole family is really proud of his accomplishment.

The feat also caught the attention of officials with Golf Canada, the sport’s governing body.

When told about the six-year-old’s hole-in-one, Dan Hyatt, the senior manager of rules and amateur championships confirmed that it was a legitimate ace – a shot from a standard tee position to a regular-size hole.

He said it was “amazing news” and communications director Dan Pino called it a “very impressive feat” and “a pretty special accomplishment.”

Dad Kevin Barszcz plays golf but Kohen now holds bragging rights as the only one in his immediate family to record a hole-in-one.

The family lives in St. Catharines and Kohen is headed to Grade 2 in the fall.

Kohen, who is in his third summer of golf camp at Eagle Valley, was the youngest player in his group, his mom said.

“They were all so amazed and proud of him. They had never seen a hole-in-one happen.”

Big brother Jackson was especially proud and supportive, hugging and congratulating him.

After his whirlwind day, that evening Kohen kept saying, “Mom, it still feels like a dream.”

He usually does two weeks of golf camp in the summer and gets out for a few rounds each year, she said.

In the future, he might take some lessons with Glass at Eagle Valley and maybe even enter some junior tournaments, she said.

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