Boys golf celebrates solid finish

Gavin Ewen, Sectional Editor

As Elk Grove boys golf head coach Brian Bucciarelli finishes another season, he said he feels a sense of accomplishment and excitement for the future.

Golfers Noah Morton, Jason Gamez and Dean Carlson all qualified to sectionals during the 2019 fall season. Bucciarelli said he believes this is a step in the right direction for the program as a whole.

“Every year Coach (Mike) Radakovitz and I have been coaching together, our numbers have increased every year,” Bucciarelli said. “I think kids are enjoying the lifelong sport and are pushing themselves to become better, which is making us a competitive team in the MSL.”

Bucciarelli said his team improved dramatically throughout the season, just not with their golf game, but with their leadership skills as well. He said players such as Noah Morton and Jason Gamez, helped underclassmen with their craft, techniques and overall attitudes.

“Noah Morton and Jason Gamez were great leaders,” Bucciarelli said. “Noah by leadership and Jason has always led by example.”

And now that the season is over, the team will be graduating five seniors and others will need to step up. Key upperclassmen leaders such as Morton, Gamez, Zack Akel, Zach Eugene and Evan Walz will graduate.

And after talking about next season, Bucciarelli wants to see more consistency with low scores and just overall shot by shot approach.

Bucciarelli said underclassmen such as Cooper Moellenkamp, Jaden Alberson and Nick Lamberg all made big improvements throughout the season and may play a big role on the varsity squad next season.

“I think Coach Radakovitz and I will have the same approach of getting kids to love the sport of golf,” Bucciarelli said. “Next year will be a little bit challenging as we will have a good amount of younger kids that will be playing.”

Bucciarelli said his favorite part of the season was winning three straight matches against Wheeling, Glenbard East and Maine West. He said it boosted the team’s confidence and was some of their best golf of the year. This started a streak of shooting in the 160s as a team for four straight matches.

Although next season is going to be a year of improvement and working through the kinks, Bucciarelli said there will be a stronger turnout with incoming freshman who can help the team in the future.

“I think our team is starting to understand our philosophy or playing the course,” he said. “We tend to have a plan on each hole, and we are starting to execute our plan. That is why our team averages were lower this year.”