HU women bowlers eighth at sectional qualifier

The Huntington University women's bowling team took eighth out of 16 teams at the Intercollegiate Team Championships Sectional Qualifier at Smyrna Bowling Center in Smyrna, TN, which spanned Saturday, March 15, to Sunday, March 16.

It was the second trip to sectionals in as many years for the Foresters, who improved on last season's 13th place showing. The format of the tourney included moving to a different pair of lanes after every four Baker games with the top four teams advancing to the National Championships Finals in Reno, NV, in April.

Vying for one of those top spots, the No. 22 Foresters started out well on Saturday by rolling a 180.5 Baker average through the first 16 games to find themselves in sixth place, only 67 pins out of fourth. They continued to bowl well until the last four games Saturday afternoon, where they averaged just 164.5 and fell to seventh place, 254 pins out of fourth.

On Sunday, they picked up where they left off, continuing to average 164.5 to slip to ninth after 48 games, but were able to climb a spot over the final 16 games to increase their position and finish eighth overall. Only 7.5 pins per game proved to be the difference between their eighth place finish and the fourth and final spot for nationals.

Huntington bowled against a different opponent every four Baker games. The squad finished with seven wins, eight losses and one tie over the two days. They defeated Wisconsin Madison, Morehead State, Campbellsville, Urbana, Lindenwood, University of Northern Ohio, Martin Methodist and tied Notre Dame College.

In singles competition on Friday, March 14, 120 women competed for four spots to the national singles finals, also set for April in Reno. Each competitor bowled six games, moving six to eight pairs of lanes each game.

Five Foresters finished in the top 50, led by Ayla Yeiter's 17th place finish with a 186.7 average. Following Yeiter was Casandra Griffith, 31st, 180.3; Emerald Leong, 36th, 179.1; Brooke Ewing, 37th, 178.5; and Shelby New, 50th, 174.8. Emily O'Leary claimed 60th with a 171.6 average to round out the team. It took an average of 208.5 over six games to advance to nationals.