Medalist Menser Sets Pace as DCC Pulls Away from Skyline to Take Back Title

By Tom Lang
Special for

June 8, 2024

BATTLE CREEK – For the last four years, Detroit Catholic Central and Ann Arbor Skyline have been battling nip and tuck as two of the top teams in Michigan, led by 2024 seniors Julian Menser of DCC and Vibhav Alokam of Skyline.

This year, Catholic Central nipped Skyline, again, winning the boys Lower Peninsula Division 1 title at Bedford Valley by eight strokes with a two-round 597.

Menser shot 70-70-140 over Friday and Saturday to win medalist and lead the Shamrocks to the team title, the program’s second over the last three years. DCC’s prior three championships came from 2015-17.

Menser said none of his current teammates were on the squad with him two years ago when Catholic Central came from behind to nudge out Ann Arbor Skyline by one stroke. 

“I’m really excited, but I’m even more excited for the guys on the team that have won (the state title) because they haven’t gotten to experience this,” Menser said like a true leader. “Looking back on my sophomore year, in the moment that was the entire highlight of my high school career, and obviously this (today) will rival it. But I’m happy for those guys. They worked really hard. I’ve pushed them hard, and they’ve responded and played really well. I’m happy for them more than for myself.”

Menser led with his 140, while senior Carson Lloyd took 13th at 152, and two sophomore teammates Jack Whitmore and David Krusinski placed 23rd and 26th, respectively.

Ann Arbor Skyline’s Vibhav Alokam tees off. “I’ve had this event circled on my calendar, and I’ve wanted to win this for a long time,” Menser said. “It’s a really strong field and good competition, so it’s exciting to come out on top and know that all my hard work has paid off.”

His next step in the progression is to play golf at Michigan State.

“It’s the best golf team in the state. And ever since I was a little kid I wanted to go play golf at Michigan State,” he said. “It’s a dream come true, and I can’t wait to get there and that be my next step.”

The lead group Saturday featured Metro Detroit powerhouse golfers Peter Roehl, the defending medalist and a senior at Rochester Adams, and Skyline’s Alokam – who took runner up to Menser this weekend. Roehl dropped in a birdie putt bomb on the 18th green to finish with a second-round 70 and sixth place.

“I’m proud of the way I played today,” Alokam said. “Can’t really be mad at a 69. Julian is just such a good player. He really didn’t make any mistakes. Unfortunately, I didn’t get many putts to fall on the back nine to maybe get him nervous and hopefully get some pressure on him. But it’s all good, he’s a great dude and great player.

“The team, for a while there we weren’t putting up good scores, we didn’t break 310 for like a month,” he added. “So, I’m really proud of how we bounced back and how we kind of got it together here at the end of the season.”

Alokam is next headed to Villanova to join his older brother Vimal, a senior to be. “Playing with a sibling at a collegiate level is any kid’s dream,” Vibhav Alokam said.

“CC is always going to be good,” he continued. “They have a ton of good guys, good players. We got them my freshman year, then they got us by one (in 2022) in an incredible comeback. This year they got us again. We battled hard; it’s just the way it falls sometimes. But they deserve it.”

Sophomore Troy Nguyen of Warren De La Salle Collegiate tied for third with senior Matthew Novak of Mattawan. Conner Fox of Lake Orion tied Roehl for fifth.

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PHOTOS (Top) Detroit Catholic Central’s Julian Menser follows an approach shot during Saturday’s second round. (Middle) Ann Arbor Skyline’s Vibhav Alokam tees off. (Click for more from High School Sports Scene.)

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