Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Lady Tiger Bowlers Impressive at the Kick Off Tournament in Columbus

On Saturday December 5th the Lady Tiger Bowlers drove to Columbus to compete in the Kick Off Classic Tournament at Palace Lanes in Columbus, OH. They were joined by 31 other teams to bowl in an invitation only tournament with the other best teams in the state of Ohio. “This tournament provides our girls with great experience and is always a good time,” said Coach Phlipot. The younger Tiger teammates have never been to a bowling alley that is full such as in a tournament like this. If the Tigers can meet their goal and advance in tournament at the end of the season they will see an environment like this again.

The bowlers competed as a team with a format of 3 regular games with 2 baker games followed by a cut to the top 16 and then became a best out of 5 baker games match play. The Tigers bowled well to start with a team score of 3,005 making them 6th out of the top 16 after the first cut with scores of 850 game 1, 905 game 2 and 913 game 3, baker scores where 169 and 168. The leading scores for the Tigers came from Hannah Niekamp (223), Olivia Bruening (174, 183, 198), Maggie Hedrick (193, 180), Brigette Holsapple (179), and Makenzie Berning (220, 203). With Makenzie’s series of 573 she finished 15th overall as an individual bowler.

After the cut the Tigers took on Troy, OH in match play baker format where they came back from a 0-2 deficit to defeat the Trojans 3-2. Scores were: 182(V)-185(T), 152(V)-201(T), 182(V)-141(T), 190(V)-177(T), and 162(V)-160(T). The girls worked well together in baker play. Freshman, Morgan Heitkamp was able to step in when needed in the final 3 baker games and helped obtain the victory. “Team strategy changes when you are bowling in a big tournament like the Kick Off Classic. The goal is to allow the 5 girls who are jiving together the best to stay on the lanes. I told some of the younger girls at the beginning of the day what to expect and this included the possibility for one of them to step in if needed. All of the girls who came along had the ability to compete well. As the lanes change throughout the tournament sometimes there is an opportunity for another bowler to step in and do well, Morgan did this for us today,” said Coach Phlipot. “Hannah Niekamp also came to compete and executed on 2 big shots in the 10th frame for the Tigers.”

In the next round the Tigers were defeated by Mechanicsburg 3-0. “We just were not able to throw as many strikes in a row as the Indians. We had a good spare game but the number of strikes Mechanicsburg threw were too much for us to get the win,” said Coach Phlipot. The lady bowlers would finish the tournament in 6th place. “I was proud of the girls and we had a lot of fun. It is nice to watch a team in bowling when they start coming together and working as a unit. I have very high hopes for us throughout this season”, said Coach Phlipot

The girls compete on Saturday December 12th at Speedway Lanes in New Bremen, OH against the Marion Local Flyers.

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