After being ousted from the top-10 by the National Ten Pin Coaches Association in early February, the KU women’s bowling team has been on a tear to prove they belong amongst the best bowlers in the country. Currently, among the Northeastern Conference (NEC), the Golden Bears are ranked second.
The KU bowling team was very busy in the month of February, which should all culminate in a few stellar season-ending tournaments. Over the past month, KU competed in the final two of three NEC Meets, bowled in the Morgan State Invitational and the Adelphia Invitational.
NEC meet two went fairly well. In the first meet, back in November, KU went 7-2 against the nine other NEC competitors. This time around, KU went 5-4 and lost some really close meets. It was the first NEC meet in months, so KU needed to get in the flow of things. KU even defeated the number one team, Farleigh-Dickinson University 919-884.
Before their final NEC meet, KU competed in the Adelphi Invitational and the Morgan State Invitational. In the Morgan State Invitational, KU finished the tournament in 14th place.
Meanwhile, sophomore Christine Gordon began her February hot streak that consisted of two All-Tournament teams. Remarkably, in a field of over fifty bowlers, Gordon was awarded the honor bestowed on just six others of All-Tournament team. By bowling a 21.7 average in 23 frames, she would lead all other competitors.
At the Adelphi tournament, KU finished third overall among a seven-team field. After going 2-3 in the tournament, KU had a decent outing against some top competitors in Adelphi University and St. Francis University (Pa.).
Again, Gordon was a standout and the only Golden Bear to make the All-Tournament team. She bowled a 19.8 average in 48 frames of bowling. Other top contributors from KU were sophomore Lauren Stamm and junior Brooke Bower. Stamm bowled a 19.2 average and Bower an 18.7.
Finally, the Golden Bears competed in their third and final NEC meet. After nine games, the Golden Bears finished 6-3. After all three meets concluded, KU finished second behind Farleigh-Dickinson. Their record was 18-9 and Farleigh Dickinson ended the three meets 19-8.
Individually, KU had three bowlers in the top-20 at the third NEC meet. Ranked third overall was Bower, bowling an average 218 per game. Junior Rebecca Velazquez finished the tournament 12th overall, while Gordon was just behind her with a 16th place finish.
KU has just the season-ending tournament left including the NEC Championships, USBC Sectionals and, ultimately, the NCAA National Championships. With a final regular season record of 69-38, KU is certainly a force to be reckoned with in the month of March.
The top bowlers for KU this season are Bower, junior Deanna DiRado and Gordon. Bower currently leads with an average game of 201. 8. DiRado is second with a 196 average and Gordon currently takes third with a 195 average.
The Golden Bears return to action this weekend, Friday, March 5. They will be close to home in Allentown, Pa where they will compete in the USBC Team and Individual Sectionals.
By Oliver Thayer