Rocket boys place third at state bowling tourney

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CCM/Carol McIntire Rocket bowlers. From left: Jayden Rolli, Spencer Bernhart, Robert Myer, Nate Downing, Nolan Caldwell and Bobby Brennan.

By Carol McIntire
Conotton Valley made school history last weekend when the boys bowling team made its first appearance at the Division II state tournament.
The team made the most of the opportunity, qualifying for the championship round and placing third.
In a field of seasoned teams, that included defending state runner-up Coldwater, the Rockets qualified fourth in the group of eight teams that advanced to the championship round. The Rockets turned in scores of 948, 967 and 951 for a 2,866 in the regulation games and added Baker games of 205, 188 and 192 for a 585 total and team total of 3,451.
Coldwater qualified first with a team total of 3,724.
Conotton Valley faced Wooster Triway in the quarter final round – the best of five Baker games – winning the first two 212-206, 193-177 and falling 215-175 in the third before rebounding for the win by a 200-259 score.
The Rockets advanced to face Coldwater in the semifinals, where they won the first Baker 184-181 and dropping the next three 217-199, 202-194, 200-259 to be eliminated. Coldwater advanced to the championship, where the team lost 3-1.
Seniors Nolan Caldwell and Robert Myer earned All-Ohio status during the individual awards ceremony.
Caldwell was a second team All-Ohio selection placing eighth. He laid down games of 193, 258 and 202 for a 653 series. Myer earned honorable mention All-Ohio with a 634 series (208, 221, 205), good for 14th place.
Junior Bobby Brennan missed All-Ohio (the top 15) by one pin, finishing in 16th place. Nathan Downing rolled two games of regulation, 203 and 170, and Jayden Rolli scored a 149 in a single game.
“It was an awesome experience for the boys,” said Coach Dennis Gordon. “As a coach, I’d been there with another team, but this experience was special. The kids are a pretty level-headed bunch. Robert is a calm kid and I think that helped the other kids remain calm.”
“Coldwater is the real deal,” Gordon said. “They are there every year. We hung with them, we just needed a couple more spares.”
The Warriors made the team’s fourth appearance in the 16-year history of the tournament.
After placing second at the district tournament behind Conotton Valley, the Warrriors failed to qualify for the championship round, placing 12th in the team of 16 teams.
Individually, senior Brant George tied for 35th place with a 576 series (204, 191, 181), followed by Bryce Taylor, 47th 551 (191, 180, 180); Kobe Green 511 (180, 147, 184); and Jaden Johnston 508 (155, 198, 155).

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