Comet boys re-set school bowling record by 84 pins
By John Burbridge
CHARLES CITY — Great teams are greater than the sum of their individual parts.
But the combined individual sum the Charles City Comet boys bowling team recorded while hosting Tripoli at Comet Bowl on Friday left a pretty high bar to attempt to be greater than.
Led by senior Nathan Shultz’s two-game 469 series, the Comets were sitting at an uncommonly impressive 2,226 team score after the individual round.
Charles City was so locked that Noah Reams’s 421 series wasn’t even used.
“I can’t say we’ve ever had someone roll a 421 and not have it make the cut,” said Comet head coach Doug Bohlen, whose team used the series scores from Nathan Girkin (448), Koyer Kellogg (439), Cael Bohlen (438) and Cade Schmidt (432).
But when the Comets went into the baker rotation round, that’s when they really got on a roll.
With a select fivesome bowling each frame in order, the Comets strung eight strikes in a row to start the first game. The collective quest for perfection was thwarted when Shultz left a ringing 10-pin in the ninth.
Anchorman Schmidt, who strikes out in the tenth more than Kyle Schwarber strikes out with runners in scoring position, also got tapped with a 10-pin as the Comets finished with a 268 game.
Using a variety of lineups that included several junior varsity bowlers, the Comets continued to bowl well in the baker rotation and strung eight strikes again in the third game for a 269 and eventually finished with a five-game baker total of 1,127 (225 average).
With a little imagination, Charles City’s baker rotation total could have been even higher. The Comets were in the pocket more than 90% with their first balls but still left intermittent 7- and 10-pins.
Nonetheless, with the individual and baker rounds totaling 3,353, the undefeated Comets broke the school record they set earlier this season by 84 pins while beating the Panthers — who really didn’t bowl that bad in the individual round — by more than 1,000 pins.
“Well, our guys can throw strikes as they showed again, but we may have only missed a few one-pins spares today,” Bohlen said. “Like I say, ‘Strikes are good for show but spares will win you the dough’. We have been working on our spare shooting … practicing while concentrating on technique and not worrying about or even keeping score until the end of the practice. The kids have bought into it.”
Charles City’s girls team defeated Tripoli by more than 300 pins with a team total 2,615. Sarah Mitchell led the way in the individual round with a two-game total of 379, followed by Heather Viers (360), Joslyn Cotton (339), Brianna Ross (324) and Lilly Usher (318).
Charles City also boasted some good scores in junior varsity competition. Kale Ross had a 243 game, Chris Tull recorded his first 200 game with a 211, and first-year bowler Ragan Hintgen rolled a 189 for a career-high.