The first look into the bowling season


On Saturday, the varsity boys bowling team ventured to Park Center Lanes [home to East Kentwood] to kick off its season. This bowling invitational hosted by East Kentwood gave the team a good taste of the competition that they will be up against this season.

The boys have been putting a lot of effort in prior to the season officially starting. Unfortunately, that hard work didn’t pay off nearly as much as they were hoping for. They placed sixth out of twelve teams which is a good spot to be at; however, with the amount of talent all eight athletes have, a sixth-place title isn’t the appropriate placement to describe this team.

The reason why the boys placed sixth is because of their shaky start. The boys didn’t play their best during the first game, which is where their downfall started. “Start off strong” is a saying that is overlooked in sports, and this happens especially in a mental sport; it is crucial that athletes keep that in mind.

“None of us were ready to be in a tournament. The oil patterns caught us off guard and as a team we weren’t mentally ready to play,” Luke Stiles said.

During the invitational, senior Carter Lyons proved to his team that his spot on varsity was well earned. Despite the fact that he is a senior rookie and has never bowled, he played extremely well and kept a great disposition throughout the day.

“It was fun even though I was nervous. When it was my time to bowl, I just had fun with it. The boys were fun to play with and it was a great time and great experience,” Carter said.

Out of the whole tournament, baker games are what killed this team. Baker games are one thing that this team desperately needs to work on as they haven’t been played during practice. A baker game is when multiple bowlers [in this case five] combine to bowl one game. This team game tests team chemistry to its limits and it pushed those limits too hard as it was their downfall.

“During baker games, there is a lot of pressure. If you mess up, it feels like you let down the team and it ruins the whole positive vibe,” Luke Stiles said. Despite the rough baker games, they almost won against Grandville. They lost by eight pins [123-131] in their third baker game.

As the boys head into the first conference game next week, they know what they need to work on.

Junior Wes Baldwin commented, “Overall I think we did better than expected but there is a lot of room for improvement.”

The boys are aware that they need to tweak a few things to reach their highest potential. Having that realization this early on in this season gives the boys a great advantage. This Wednesday, the bowling team will be playing Forest Hills Northern at Eastbrook Lanes at 3:30. Learning from the tournament, the boys will be well beyond prepared for Wednesday afternoon. On behalf of the bowling team, we hope to see you there.