North Central Women’s Bowling
North Central in year three of its bowling program, steered by Head Coach Rich Gucwa. Cardinals have a ton of experience on the roster and travel to Timley Park for the Flyer Classic, hosted by Lewis.
So here’s the format – we’re taking in the Sunday festivities – which features three, best-of-seven baker format matchups. We pick up action with NCC topping Spalding University in six games. Including a single game high of 202.
So now, it’s on to Elmhurst in the third matchup – this will decide who places 9th overall in the 12-team field.
First game, we get Kaitlin Freunt trying to pick up a spare – which she does. NCC off to a good start.
Final frame of the opening game, North Central needs a big roll here from Talia Roti. And how about an ace that gives the Cardinals a 179-152 win.
Alright, second game now and we catch up with sophomore Kelly Heighway. And she’s hearing JZ tunes… because she’s crossing into Brooklyn territory.
Elmhurst keeping it interesting midway through the second game – Keirsten Henderson strikes from the left side using the big hook.
But Roti is having herself a day. The freshman gets a clean sweep – and is a little surprised by it – and that proves huge in a closer second game – which NCC wins 157-147.
To the third, with NCC up 2-0… Elmhurst is getting strikes from Elena Vevmar and Katherine Pettinger, which helps the Bluejays build a lead.
No worries though – frame 6 has Dana Sasenick staring down the lane… and she connect on all 10. Keeping NCC alive.
9th frame and Heighway reaching for the sniper to knock down the 10 pin… and she tucks it in the corner for the pickup.
But the Bluejays get a clutch frame from Theresa Hutto – who buries the strike… and the secures the win, 167-162
To the fourth, but before the bowling resumes, coach Gucwa making sure his team is on the same page.
Alright, back to play – and junior Melissa March is the veteran on the team – and she knocks down the spare with ease to put NCC back on track.
With Elmhurst done – and only up 4 pins, NCC just needs Roti to avoid the gutter… and ohhhh myyyy goooodness, that was a close call. NCC locked down a 160-156 win.
Moving right ahead to the fifth game, and back to March… who is clearing the path in her first frame. Knocking down all 10.
But Pettinger putting Elmhurst on her back and getting pumped after she sweeps the deck… Elmhurst routs game five by a 200-135 margin.
So NCC up 3-2 heading to the 6th game… and a big second and seventh frames belong to Freunt. She strikes not once, but twice to pace the Cardinals.
Unfortunately, the Bluejays get a spare from Hutto and edge the Cardinals 177-174… pushing this thing to the full 7 games.
And to start the 7th… Three straight strikes to build an enormous lead.
North Central down by more than 40 pins with only three frames to go, so it’s over right?
Not if March has something to say about it – she swings the momentum back with a strike.
Can Heighway keep it going? The sophomore again cutting across the lead pin and bring home a strike… so that’s two straight…
Now to the 10th frame and NCC is still technically in it as the freshman Roti steps up. And there is a turkey!
NCC knocking on the doorstep of a ridiculous comeback as Roti heads back to the line in desperate need of a fourth strike… and she nails it!! She closes the frame with a 7 and now all eyes shift to Elmhurst’s lane as Hutto aims for a spare… and it goes wide as the Cardinals claim the 7 game win! The 9th place finish, the best relative to the field all season as North Central leave the Tinley Bowl with good vibes.