COLLINSVILLE - Several area girls bowlers advanced to the sectional from Saturday's Collinsville Regional at Camelot Lanes.
Collinsville won the team championship, with Triad and Civic Memorial also advancing their teams to next week's sectional, while three Roxana bowlers - Natalie Moreland, Kianna Jackson, and Brendalynn Blackburn - along with Edwardsville's Charlotte Hayes and Ashley Kuethe, Jersey's Sammie Malley and Granite City's Amelia Lour advancing as individuals in the IHSA regional tournament held Saturday.
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The Kahoks came out on top with a six-game team score of 5,536. with Highland coming in second with a score of 5,305, the Knights placing third with a 4,682, and the Eagles claiming the final team spot with a 4,164. Edwardsville was fifth with a 4.025. Jersey was sixth at 3,810, Roxana came in seventh with a 3,685, Alton was eighth with a score of 3,612, East Alton-Wood River was ninth at 2,894, Piasa Southwestern was 10th with a score of 2,764, and Granite City was 11th with a 2,288. Marquette Catholic and Metro-East Lutheran were assigned to the regional but did not compete.
The Kahoks were very excited to win the tournament, and head coach Sean Hay felt it was a very well-deserved triumph.
"Oh, it's awesome," Hay said. "We were down for four of the six games; we were in second place. We got paired up with Highland on the same pair, and halfway through the game, we just felt the energy switch. And we really started to pep up and when you bowl with a little bit more pep, you're going to score a little bit better. So, the girls really responded well, they did exactly what they needed to do and then, they finished it off with a good game in the last game. We struggled a little bit in the beginning as a team, but we found our way, so that was awesome."
The Kahoks' Courtney Baer finished tied for second with the Eagles' Madeline Woelfel and also had Cassidy Stewart finishing sixth and Sophie Tottleben placing ninth, completing a very successful day for the team.
"Oh, awesome," Hay said. "Like I said, it's obviously what we prepare for all the time and to actually get it done. lots of people prepare for it. To get it done, you've got to finish it. Again, very proud of these girls for their commitment all year long and let's hope we carry this energy up to next week."
Triad head coach Francesca Kolesa was very proud of her team as well, and felt that the Knights bowled very well throughout the day.
"Good, good," Kolesa said. "The girls did really well today, so I'm very proud of them."
When it appeared that Triad would clinch their team spot in the sectional, the entire team started cheering on their teammates and displayed their positive energy.
"Great," Kolesa said. "My girls do really well of just cheering each other on, even if they struggle in the beginning. We did struggle at the beginning of game six, so it was really good for them to just come together and do what they know they needed to do."
Eagles head coach Shane Stille was equally as proud of his team for their efforts and is looking ahead to the sectional next week.
"I'm really proud of the girls," Stille said. "They bowled really well today and I'm excited to have another week of practice with them, that our season didn't end today. It's pretty exciting and especially that we didn't get to have this last year makes it that much better."
The COVID-19 pandemic did affect the Eagles in some ways this season as well, but CM was able to fight off the adversity and distractions and bowled very well.
"Absolutely," Stille said. "We've had a couple of times this year where we weren't able to have everybody on the girls' team, especially. And I'm just glad that we were able to stay healthy this week and hopefully next week, we can be just as healthy and have everybody for sectionals.
While Greco advanced as the final individual for the Redbirds, Regan Spinks qualified as the first alternate in case one of the individual bowlers can't compete in the sectional. And it made Alton head coach Dave Meyer a very happy man indeed.
"Doing good," Meyer said. "Very proud of Taylor and Regan as the alternate, but very proud of Taylor the way she stayed calm the whole day and kept working hard. It was very good. It's very good from the way the program was at the beginning of the year to the way the program finished, to the way the girls finished, even the way they did well as a team. But Taylor, it's great. She really came on strong. She's a senior and a first-year bowler for us, so it was really good."
The fact that Greco is a first-year bowler who qualified for the sectional makes it even more special.
"It is a good deal," Meyer said. "She has bowled, but she didn't bowl for Alton High. And so, first time for us, but it was good the way she finished. She's good for the program, and it's going to be fun next weekend with her."
Hayes and Kuethe qualifying for the sectional was a big accomplishment for the Tigers and head coach Deanne Voegele was very proud of all of her bowlers on the day.
"I think we bowled really well," Voegele said. "Our top two girls had a couple of great games for us."
The team's performance was a very good one on the day, but there's also much work to be done on the way to the sectional.
"I think they bowled pretty well today," Voegele said, "especially Ashley and Charlotte really brought their full game today. Still working with picking up those spares, though."
The individual champion was Greenville's Brooklyn Suzuki, who tossed a 1,289 six-game series to win the title, with Woelfel and Baer finishing in a tie for second place with identical 1,267 scores. Fourth place went to Highland's Carissa Merkle with a 1,248 series, while teammate Tiffany Hediger was fifth with a 1,235 score. Stewart came in sixth with a 1,219 set, seventh place went to Triad's Brylee Proffitt with a six-game series of 1,084, Hayes was in eighth with a 1,075, Tottleben was ninth with a 1,064, and Kaylee Broadfield of the Knights rounded out the top ten with a score of 1,046.
Along with the top three bowlers from Collinsville, Emily Dahl had a 946 set, Caici Buckman had a limited series of 551 and Livia Montgomery tossed a limited set of 489.
Along with both Merkle and Hediger, the Bulldogs saw Mackenzie Davis throw a 1,062 series, Leanora Nicklin had a 986 score, Sage Thole had a limited series of 562, Adilyn Goodwin had a single game of 117, and Amara Vrell had a single game of 109.
Along with the scores of Proffitt and Broadfield, the Knights had Rose Beyer with a 979 series, Ava Burrlesman had an 877 series, Jennifer Hamilton had a limited set of 479 and Riley Reeves had a 217 score.
To go along with Woelfel's score, the Eagles had Allie Roberson with a 909 series, Madison Parnell tossed a 761 score, Kayla Coffman threw a 733 set, Linda Paslay had a 269 and Mary Lawrence had a score of 225.
Greco led the Redbirds with a 785 to qualify for the sectional, while Spinks tossed a 777 series to qualify as first alternate, Clara Veloff had a 697 series, Ava Taulbee tossed a five-game set of 558, Chalyse Jarrett had a single game of 136 and Chloe Yinger had a single game of 61.
Along with Hayes and Kuethe's scores, the Tigers had Grace Kirkpatrick with a 737 series, Corinna Winkler threw a 615 set and Kyndall Robertson had a 602 series.
The Warriors only had three bowlers on the day, and along with Lour's qualifying score, Lauren Wilson had a 696 series and Sydney Choat tossed a 616 set.
To go along with Malley's qualifying score of 1.036, the Panthers got a 756 score from Corree Yates, Khloee Hall tossed a 738, Mallory Clevenger threw a 545 series, Kate Heitzig had a limited series of 418 and Kateryna Savienkova had a limited series of 317.
The Piasa Birds were led by Ashlynn Huber's 627 series, with Jelsie Biciocchi having a 617 series, Katlynn Kemna had a 464 series, Miraina Biciocchi tossed a 427 set, Chiara Biciocchi had a 412 set and Maizie Ball had a limited series of 217.
Moreland led the three Shells' qualifiers with an 829, with Jackson rolling an 824 set and Blackburn went through with an 817 score. Brooke DePew had a limited series of 477, Emily Wideman had a limited set of 381 and Molly Abney had a series of 357.
The Oilers were led by Elizabeth Gernon's 649 score, with Payton Eckhoff right behind with a 634, Elizabeth Feyerabend tossed a 617 score, Loralei Shemona threw a 579 set and Autumn Owens had a score of 415.
In addition, Carlinville's Adie Cordani went through to the sectional as an individual with an 876 score.
The qualifying individuals and teams will compete in the Mt. Vernon sectional next Saturday at the Nu Bowl Lanes in Mt. Vernon, with the tournament starting at 9 a.m. The sectional qualifiers go on to the IHSA state tournament on Feb. 19-20 at its traditional site of Cherry Bowl in Rockford.
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