Sochalski signs with Milligan

By Wes Holtsclaw

   The Elizabethton Cyclone golf squad has made solid strides over the past few seasons, a big reason for that has been the play of Daniel Sochalski.
   Next year, Sochalski will still be golfing in this county, but he will take his game to Milligan College where he signed a letter of intent on Wednesday for the Buffaloes.
   "I think it's a great opportunity to grow further in my golf game," Sochalski said. "It's taken a lot of hard work and determination to get there."
   Sochalski will join former Elizabethton teammate Michael Morrell, Johnson County's Adam Clark and Science Hill standouts Bo Milhorn and Rob Young.
   "Milligan's got a good team and I know a lot of people on the squad so it will be a good time.," he said. "It's what I've always wanted to do."
   Sochalski had an impressive 37 stroke average this year for nine hole matches and had a low score of 33. He won the fourth flight of the East Tennessee Amateur in 2001 and placed third in the third flight of the event this past year.
   "I like Daniel's potential," said Milligan coach Tony Wallingford. "He is a good athlete and a hard worker. He will continue to improve with experience. Beyond his golf game, I'm happy to have such a quality young man in our program."
   Sochalski looks forward to playing under Wallingford the next four years.
   "He's a great guy and a great Christian," said Sochalski. "He's out there for you and to help you and the team. He's an awesome coach."
   Sochalski also participated in the PGA Junior Tour last summer and qualified for the State Championship in Tullahoma, TN. He helped the Cyclones win the Dino Senesi Golf Classic in 2001 and the District 1-AA title the same year.
   Daniel enjoyed his high school tournaments, as they gave him the experience to work towards the college game.
   "The region and conference tournaments were big and put pressure on you," he said. "It got me prepared and made me want to improve and get better."
   Under coach Dave Rider, the Cyclones did some big things with Daniel on the course. He believes it was a good experience.
   "Coach Rider is a great coach and he influenced us a lot," he said. "It was just great playing with other kids from the school, and being able to talk about golf with them."
   The son of Steve and Debbie Sochalski of Elizabethton, Daniel plans to major in business at Milligan and pursue a career in stockbroking.
   "My mom and dad have been supportive in everything I do," he said. "They've always been behind me one hundred percent. If it weren't for them, I wouldn't be here today."
   Sochalski also wrestled for Elizabethton, where he finished second in the region in 2001 and qualified for the state tournament.