The right strike
According to Chugiak head coach Teri Schneider, bowling is all about teamwork.
And her boys and girls teams support and encourage one another.
“I have a great bunch of kids,” she said during Anchorage Scholastic Bowling League play at Eagle River Bowl on Dec. 12.
Her goal is to build up the program.
“And we’re doing it. We’re up to 30 kids this year.”
The teams’ biggest weaknesses is instability.
“We have a lot of new bowlers, a lot of freshmen,” she said.
About 10 seniors will also be leaving at the end of the season.
As far as team strength, she summed it up in one word: Commitment.
“Today, the boys finished up early and waited to see how the girls did,” she said.
Her strongest bowlers are the ones who also bowl in outside leagues.
“I have freshmen who have come in as varsity and those are the stable ones, the rocks” she said.
While she cares about overall team standings, she doesn’t see it as a top priority.
“As long as they are enjoying themselves, that’s all I care about,” she said. “That’s all that matters.”
Tight-knit Wolf pack
Eagle River coach Sarah Dutton said that both their boys and girls teams are tight.
“I’m very happy with our teams,” she said. “They really encourage each other.”
The strongest bowlers are on the varsity team.
The remainder bowl in the open category, which is similar to junior varsity.
“It’s not necessarily that they aren’t good. It’s the range they bowl,” Dutton said. “Varsity players tend to have a smaller spread so you know they’re more consistent.”
The open players work on closing up the spread gap.
She sees the boys team’s biggest challenge as Bartlett and Chugiak, and the girls, Bartlett.
“The bigger schools have a lot more people on their teams and that gives them more choices,” she said.
As of last week, Eagle River and Chugiak shared first place among the boys, and Eagle River’s girls were in the top spot.
The Wolves practice four hours a week as a team but most also put in extra time.
“Eagle River Bowl allows bowling teams three free games a day (for Eagle River and Chugiak),” she said. “They’re really supportive of local bowlers.”
Bowlers usually stop in after school and bowl for an hour or so, she said.
Chugiak and Eagle River cruised to easy victories Dec. 12.
Chugiak’s boys blanked East 35-0, and Savannah Hudson’s high game 195 helped the girls down the T-Birds 27-8.
Eagle River’s boys and girls both won 33-2 over West.
Shannon Jones rolled a high score of 201 to lead Eagle River’s girls and Bobby Leibbrand bowled a high game 225 for the boys.
Contact Cinthia Ritchie at 694-2727 or [email protected].