Back to Full Strength, Menser Eager to Show Full Talent with Title Pursuit

By Keith Dunlap
Special for

June 6, 2024

For a while this spring, Detroit Catholic Central senior golfer Julian Menser probably wondered if he was going to be spending more time in the hospital than on the golf course.

Greater DetroitUp until the initial days of May, Menser had a terrible bout of mononucleosis, and treatment days were more common than sessions on the driving range or putting green.

“After I was done with the symptom part, I would be out practicing and I’d all of a sudden get hit with random fatigue,” said Menser, who said he also suffers from asthma. “It would hijack what I was trying to get done.”

Fortunately, it appears as if his senior season will have a happy ending after the slow start. 

Menser is not only healthy, but is playing superb golf heading into this weekend’s Lower Peninsula Division 1 Final at Bedford Valley in Battle Creek.

The happiest conclusion would be for Menser to close his high school career with an individual championship – and the way he’s been playing, it’s quite possible.

On May 15 at the Oakland County tournament, Menser fired a 7-under par round of 65 at Fieldstone Golf Club in Auburn Hills to win the medalist honor going away. 

Last week in his Regional tournament at Twin Lakes, Menser shot a 6-under par round of 66 to win the medalist honor and lead the Shamrocks to the team title. 

Signed to play next for Michigan State, Menser is rightfully full of confidence. 

Menser sends a shot out of the deep rough at The Meadows at Grand Valley State.“I’m playing well, but I just try to look at it that golf can change and how you are playing can change every single morning when you wake up,” Menser said. “I don’t really look at it as, ‘I shot this then’ or ‘I played this well here.’ I don’t really look at it like that. I just kind of look at it as coming into this tournament it means a lot to me, and the team wants to win. I just prioritize that.”

Menser hopes to also rebound from what was a disappointing result by his expectations at last year’s MHSAA Tournament. 

After finishing eighth individually two years ago as a sophomore, Menser couldn’t crack the top 10 last season. 

“I didn’t really play how I wanted to play last year,” Menser said. “I honestly felt like I let the guys down on the team last year. I felt good going into last year. I just didn’t execute how I was trying to or play like I was trying to. But that’s golf.” 

Menser has been on varsity since his freshman year, and Catholic Central head coach Mike Anderson said it’s hard to tell what has grown more, his game or his body. 

Anderson said Menser has grown about seven inches since his freshman year, which is allowing him to hit the ball a ton now in addition to having an outstanding short game, putter and intelligence around the course. 

“He’s very mature for his age,” Anderson said. “He’s got great golf mechanics. He thinks his way around the course well. He’s a fantastic young man. Very smart.”

Menser will have a busy summer circuit before heading to MSU, where he hopes to follow in the footsteps of past Catholic Central golfer James Piot by having an unforgettable career with the Spartans. 

Piot also became well-known when he won the U.S. Amateur and played on the LIV Golf tour. 

“I think those footsteps are ones that anyone would want to follow in,” Menser said.

Keith DunlapKeith Dunlap has served in Detroit-area sports media for more than two decades, including as a sportswriter at the Oakland Press from 2001-16 primarily covering high school sports but also college and professional teams. His bylines also have appeared in USA Today, the Washington Post, the Detroit Free Press, the Houston Chronicle and the Boston Globe. He served as the administrator for the Oakland Activities Association’s website from 2017-2020. Contact him at [email protected] with story ideas for Oakland, Macomb and Wayne counties.

PHOTOS (Top) Detroit Catholic Central’s Julian Menser putts during last season’s Lower Peninsula Division 1 Final. (Middle) Menser sends a shot out of the deep rough at The Meadows at Grand Valley State. (Click for more from High School Sports Scene.)

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