Boys golf ends season on high note with NCS pennant


Seniors on the Branson boys golf team pose with NCS Division II awards on May 8, 2023. (Courtesy Charlie Farrell)

By William Mueth

Branson’s boys varsity golf team ended its season on a high note by winning its NCS division, concluding a successful season. 

While the team fell short in the MCAL tournament a week prior, they were ready to bounce back in the North Coast Section Division II tournament on May 8.

“We didn’t play as well as we should’ve in MCAL which is unfortunate,” Aria Saluja said. “But we move forward, and we came into the NCS ready to play to the best of our abilities and knowing that we could win.” 

The Bulls managed to secure a win in the match that had initially ended in a tie at 309 with Head Royce. Thanks to senior Jack Collet, who shot a personal best of 85, Branson was able to win the tiebreaker and win the championship.

Ryan Herbst also contributed significantly to the win, shooting a career best 3 under 69.

The team finished the season strong, with Charlie Farrell, a senior, winning MCAL Player of the Year and the Bobby Jones Sportsman Award.

Farrell’s teammates also received significant recognition from the MCAL all-leagues. The league named Ryan Herbst to the first team, Aria Saluja to the second team and Barry Liu with an honorable mention.

“Everyone on the team has been playing great all season and has contributed to this team despite golf being normally an individual sport,” Saluja said. “We’ve worked really hard and I’m glad we were able to win this.” 

Not only has this team played well on the course, but they have also forged lasting relationships with one other and done so across grade levels. 

“This team is special, and everyone is there for each other,” Saluja said. “We’re all friends, and even though we’re going to lose some really great seniors this year, I’m still excited to see the freshmen and new members that join the team next year.” 

In addition to the collective victory in NCS Division II, senior Ryan Herbst also earned medalist honors and qualified for the NCS Division I tournament.