If you followed area high school and junior golf over the past five years, the name Ryan Edholm would have been a familiar one. After studying and competing for four years at Sweet Home high school, Edholm moved across town to Canisius College, where he continues to learn in the classroom and on the golf course.
On Sunday, July 9th, Edholm did a thing. He posted a final-round 59, the first sub-60 score ever recorded at Grover Cleveland Golf Course. He chose a fine time to do it: the closing round of the Erie County Amateur. Edholm rocketed to the top of the field, finishing eight shots ahead of his closest competitor.
As if that weren’t enough, Edholm qualified a few weeks back for this week’s Porter Cup. If you didn’t seem him at Grover, be sure to stop up to Niagara Falls country club to watch one of the area’s top golfers in action, against some of the world’s top amateurs.
As if THAT weren’t enough, Ryan took time out of his celebration answer our questions. Have a quick nine with Mr. 59, Ryan Edholm.
1. Tell us about your earliest golf memories, and why it stuck with you.
Growing up being able to play with my friends and family I think is what did it for me, going to junior golf on mondays in the summer at Brighton since before I can remember. After playing 18 holes I would walk to my grandparents house which is on the 17th hole there at Brighton and sneaking out and playing more holes made me fall in love with the game.
2. At what point did you decide that competitive golf would be a thing for you?
I’ve always been a very competitive person no matter what I was doing, whether it may be hockey or baseball or golf and I happened to be pretty good at golf so I started signing up and playing in all these events and loved it.
3. You played well at Sweet Home. What did high school golf add to your game?
Just being able to play competitive golf in the fall and spring kept my game sharp throughout. Just having something to play for was huge for me I think. Also getting all my friends from school out on the course with me was awesome. I also had one of the greatest people I know as my coach who toughened me up throughout my career on his team. I was this little 7th grader coming in and playing with all these high schoolers and coach Tojek was awesome with me and I wouldn’t be where I am today without him.
4. Things get interesting when college golf becomes a possibility. Did you have offers to leave town? What made you stay at Canisius?
It’s so hard to get recruited out of the northeast to go down south, I emailed so many places and barely got any responses from anyone so my options were kind of limited. I picked Canisius because it knew it was somewhere I would be given an opportunity to play immediately, I have yet to miss a college event that my team travels to so I think my decision has worked out pretty well so far.
5. Is the ECA your biggest win to date? We know that qualifying for the Porter Cup is like a win. You decide.
I’d say this win is probably my biggest yet, but a tournament that means a lot to me is the club championship at Pendleton creek, I’ve been fortunate enough to win it the last 2 years so I would put those wins up there as well. Also obviously super excited about the Porter Cup this week.
6. How does it feel to know that you will be inside the ropes, hitting shots, at this week’s Porter Cup?
This week should be a lot of fun, just knowing some of the names that have played in this amazing event, I’m really excited to see what I can do this week.
7. What’s the best part of your game? What needs work?
I’ve been driving it really well as of late, I’ve always been in my opinion one of the best ball strikers in the area but could use some work around the green. Everything has been pretty good recently.
8. What are your goals and your strategies for Niagara Falls country club?
Some of my goals for the week are to just be myself. I know I’m good enough to compete with these guys; now I just need to show it. Just need to keep hitting it well, take it one shot at a time, and show I belong on that stage.
9. What question should we have asked, that we didn’t? Ask it and answer it. Thank you for your time.
I think you should’ve asked about my family, and what they mean to me.
They mean the world to me, just to go out and play with them all the time is amazing, everyone is a good player, obviously brother Tyler played at Niagara University, and he gives me a good challenge every time we go out and play, so that has meant a lot to me. My mom played golf at coastal Carolina (and also volleyball) and she is something like a 3 or 4 handicap now so she gives an amazing challenge too. Dad has pretty much been the only swing coach I’ve had, I’ve gone 19 years of my life without a lesson so all I know is from him, he also keeps the mental game in check for me too. He’ll be on the bag this week at Porter Cup, so we’re both really excited about that.