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Tjahadi Uses Aggressive Swing to Lead Perkiomen Golf to Victory
Written by Bradley Schlegel Staff Reporter
2016-05-04

Perkiomen's Andrew Tjahadi chips onto the green of the second hole at Butter Valley during Monday's match against AIM Academy. Tjahadi posted a team-best 39 for the Panthers.

        Following a pause at the top of his back swing, Andrew Tjahadi completed his opening tee shot Monday with an aggressive hip turn. Rather than swing his driver in a circular manner, Tjahadi's club face moves in a straight line down through the ball.

        "Andrew swings with anger," said Peter Dougherty, Perkiomen School's head golf coach.

        Tjahadi made the adjustment, to incorporate his hip drive and create a good striking angle, with the help of a previous swing coach in his native country of Indonesia.

        "Whenever I swing the club in a round shape, I always hook the ball," he said.

        On Monday, Tjahadi posted a team-best 39 for the Panthers, who defeated AIM Academy in the Tri-County Independent School League.

        Matt Pulcini finished with a 41 and Minuette Laessig added a 43 for Perkiomen School, which won the nine-hole match 123-144 at the Butter Valley Golf Port.

        Dougherty described Tjahadi – a junior from Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia – as a long hitter off the tee who needs to work on his short-iron accuracy.

        "Andrew hits the ball pretty good," the coach said. "He needs to be a little more accurate with his short irons. Once he learns to be more aggressive about attacking pins, he should have a very good senior year."

        Tjahadi, Perkiomen School's No. 2 player on Monday, described his performance this season as steady. Occasionally, he battles his own expectations.

        "My biggest weakness is my own mentality," said Tjahadi, who has missed all but three matches this spring due to injuries. "I'm too hard on myself if I have a bad hole."

        He had one of those challenging holes on No. 2, a 300-yard par four. But Tjahadi responded with a birdie on No. 3, a 465-yard par five, by chipping in his fourth shot from 50 yards out.

        According to Dougherty, the Panthers (9-0) have relied on talent and depth to dominate their league opponents this spring.

        Laessig, a senior who has committed to play golf at Lehigh University and major in chemical engineering, has remained a consistent No. 1, the coach said.

        Weight training has allowed Laessig – who averages 39 strokes per match – to add distance to her drives, according to Dougherty.

        "Minuette has gotten a lot stronger," the coach said. "Her game is incredible."

        Matt Polcini, a sophomore from Center Valley,  Drew Adamczak, a junior from Allentown, Michael Zhou, a senior from China, and junior Drew Adamczak have been consistent scorers for Perkiomen School.

        According to Dougherty, Zhou has turned himself into a steady golfer after arriving at the school as a freshman.

        "Michael has been one of our most consistent players," the coach said.

        Dougherty credited the Panthers' success to a healthy interest in the sport by the student body, which allows the team to also compete in the fall, as well as the current team's makeup.

        "There is a healthy level of competition among this group," Dougherty said. "Yet, they help each other in practice, and pull for each other. Sometimes they will listen to each other more than me. It's huge asset. That's what makes this group fun."


 

 

 

 

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