By Ellie K. ’24
Golf is one of the 27 different sports that Harvard-Westlake offers to its students. There are Junior Varsity and Varsity girls and boys teams, which compete in the spring at the middle school level, and in the fall at the high school level.
I have been playing golf for around 8 years and have been a member of the Harvard-Westlake golf team since 7th grade. I’ve had an amazing experience so far. After our 2020 season was cut short due to COVID-19, I was looking forward to getting back to it in the springtime in 9th grade in 2021. Branden Augustus was starting as our new coach that season. Coach Branden was and is always dedicated to the team, and the reason we have gotten so many opportunities in our seasons is because of him. In the beginning of the season, we were sent an email and had tryouts at Encino golf course. Soon after, I joined the varsity team excited, but a little nervous about how to navigate high school golf. Luckily, the upperclassmen who already had experience were all very welcoming. The fact that the team is also quite small makes it easier to connect with every single person. Although I was one of the youngest on the team, I felt quite comfortable with everyone, and we continued to bond throughout our entire season.
While I could share much more about my fun experiences from previous seasons, what I want to focus on is my most recent season, this past fall. This season, I was a returning sophomore, and our team added four new players, three freshman and a new sophomore. Everyone on the team was super dedicated, and I formed very close bonds this year with both the upperclassmen and the younger players. COVID-19 policies this year were also somewhat less strict and so we were able to do tons of bonding activities. One of the most rewarding experiences I had this season was playing with my team at the Brophy PING Invitational Tournament. We traveled to Wigwam, Arizona for 3 days in September. That experience was one of the best I’ve had, because while we played a lot of golf, we also went glow putt mini golfing, ate sushi, and even went bowling! On the course, we cheered each other on, and on that trip our team became very tight knit. We finished 6th as a team overall, and arrived home very tired, but proud of each other for what we accomplished.
The school golf team was one of the reasons I came to Harvard-Westlake from Paul Revere, a public charter school. In my four seasons so far, my experience has been everything I wished for and more. I would highly recommend joining the golf team no matter what level you play at, as it creates amazing experiences and is a fun way to make friends.