The W.F. West girls bowling began a new winning streak after losing a close match to rival Black Hills on Dec. 2, beating Aberdeen, 1,879 to 1,439, on Dec. 7
Up until the Black Hills match, the Bearcats had not lost a match in nearly three years. It was one of the most dominant runs by W.F. West sports team in school history.
“The Wolves are a very talented team this year returning all of their starters from a year ago, but we still expect to win every match,” W.F. West head coach Don Bunker said. “It was a great run, but it is a good time to reset the streak. Our new team is talented and young and has a very bright future. We can still win the league and will have a shot of defending our district and state championships.”
Against Black Hills, the Bearcats were not at their best, losing the match by 100 pins despite having opportunities to pull ahead. The Bearcats have been very evenly matched with the Wolves over the last four seasons, so every match is a battle and usually comes down to the last Baker game, W.F. West assistant coach Rich Bunker said.
Against Aberdeen, the Bearcats were able to win convincingly while using nine different bowlers at different times during the match. In the first game, the Bearcats beat the Bobcats 724 to 611 and were led by Piper Chalmers’ 172.
In Game 2, the Bearcats began to pull ahead with a solid 851 to the Bobcats’ 564. The Bearcats were led by Tyran Ozretich’s 180 game and Clara Bunker’s 224 game. Bunker led all bowlers with a 363 series followed by Chalmers’ 347 series.
In Baker game 1 the Bearcats won 148 to 135. In Baker Game 2, the Bearcats rolled a 156 to the Bobcats’ 129 game. Freshman Emma Hamilton and Senior Jayci Harris got their first varsity experience.
“I was happy for Emma and Jayci to get into the varsity match,” Don Bunker said. “Emma has the potential to be a future star for us. She has been working hard and is throwing a very good ball. Jayci has improved as a bowler and has been a leader on our team throughout her career. Jayci’s varsity experience has been limited, but she is always helping her teammates and our coaching staff has been very proud of her this season.”
The Bearcats came out firing in the first game vs. Rochester, shooting a season-best 929.
“Cami (Aldrich) and Piper (Chalmers) gave us the spark we needed,” Don Bunker said. “Both have been down a little bit and our team has been waiting for them to take off this season. If they bowl like they are capable of, we will be tough to beat for the rest of the season.”
Chalmers shot a 219 and Aldrich a blistering 240.
In Game 2, the Bearcats cooled off a bit but still won the second game 771 to 536. Chalmers rolled a 173 and Savannah Hawkins came in for the second game and gave the Bearcats a nice 170.
“Savannah has really been working hard,” Don Bunker said. “She just needs to keep trying to improve. Our volunteer assistant coach Cassandra Chalmers has done a nice job working with Savannah on her approach and timing. All Savannah has to do now is learn how to throw a few more revs and get a little bit more consistent. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Savannah have the highest average on the team next season. She is really picking up bowling quickly.”
In Baker Game 1, the Bearcats won 161 to Rochester’s 98. In Baker Game 2, the Bearcats bowled a 147 to Rochester’s 96. Bearcat Freshman Emma Hamilton earned another shot to bowl with the varsity. Hamilton shot a 154 and a 155 on JV, bowling 40+ pins over her average.
“Emma is going to be a great bowler and a future leader on our team,” Rich Bunker said. “She is coachable, a hard worker and is an unselfish teammate. We are very excited about Emma and our whole athletic freshman and sophomore classes.”