Boys bowling team wins first regional title since 2012

Girls also qualify for state with region runner-up finish


Photo Submitted

From left to right, coach Doug Ziegler, 7th grader Maddox Kuryla, senior Hunter Moranz, senior Matt Richards, junior Nick Sexton, senior Chris Cropper (kneeling), senior Brayden Helton, freshman Alex Contreras-Wilson, and senior Trenton Jahnke pose with the championship trophy at SuperBowl in Erlanger on March 10.

Bayleah Vogel

Boone’s boys bowling team won the 2021 KHSAA Region 6 Championship for the first time since 2012, and they won in dominating fashion.

The team entered the tournament with a losing record, and senior captain Chris Cropper didn’t think winning the region was possible. However, after bowling a seeding match in the regional tournament, the Rebels ended up seeded second.

Bowling teams compete in the Baker game format, where five bowlers rotate frames, each bowling two frames of a ten frame game. In high school, it is a best of five head-to-head against another team.

Boone defeated St. Henry in the first round and then Cov Cath in the third. No. 1 seed Ryle was beaten by Beechwood in the third round, setting up the finals between the Rebels and Tigers.

“We ended up beating Beechwood in the finals and the rest is history,” said Doug Ziegler, the boys bowling coach. “We were really working well together, and everyone was doing what needed to be done.”

The team of 12, led by Cropper and seven other senior bowlers, dominated the tournament, winning nine out of ten Baker games.

Ziegler credits Cropper for his leadership.

”(Cropper) was voted (captain) by his team, and throughout the season, you could see why,” Ziegler said. “Not only did he help me figure out how things ran during my first season as the head coach, but he was a great mentor and coach to some of the newer bowlers. He took quite a few of them under his wing and you could see their improvement throughout the season.”

Cropper said he took some of his new teammates bowling every week because he could tell that they really wanted to improve.

“It helped the team a lot because we made (many) of our rookie bowlers more consistent and brought (in) high scores for match plays,” he said.

Ziegler described his bowlers as thrilled to have won regionals, and he said that it showed the underclassmen the expectations for next season.

Cropper described his experience of winning the region as being “like a dream.” Although he and his team worked hard to improve throughout the season, he never thought that winning regionals was possible.

Nick Sexton, a junior who is a second year bowler for Boone, said that winning regionals was “one of the best feelings of (his) life” after previously losing to Ryle in the 2020 regional tournament.

Sexton was discouraged after many individual losses throughout the season, however he said that he and his teammates “powered through it” at regionals.

The team went on to compete in the KHSAA state tournament where it placed in the top 10 in the state.

“I’m excited to come back next season and build on our success,” said Ziegler. “If anyone out there reading this is interested in joining the bowling team for the 2021-22 season, be sure to look for tryout information at the beginning of the school year”

“And don’t forget to practice this summer,” he added.

Girls bowling reaches state

Members of the region runner-up girls bowling team pose with their trophy. From left to right: junior Brenna Kelley, 7th grader Araceli Acosta, junior Savannah Pence, senior Hailee Williams, junior Lillianna Acosta, sophomore Cacey Gosney, and 7th grader Isabella Sears. (Photo Submitted)

The girls bowling team, led by junior Savannah Pence, also reached state after defeating No. 3 Conner in the first round, No. 7 Holy Cross in the second, and being defeated by No. 1 Cooper in the championship.

Boone’s No. 6 seed made it seem unlikely for the team to get to state, however the Rebels pulled through and placed second in Region 6.

“My girls were very excited about going to state,” said Angel Miller, Boone’s girls bowling coach. “We had come a long way from the beginning of our season.”

Miller explained that the team started out the season with only six members which is the minimum number of bowlers needed for one team. The team defeated Conner in its first match of the season but didn’t pull many wins after that.

However the team’s fate took a turn when a student asked if they could join the team in the middle of the season, and Miller said yes because she was desperate for girls bowlers.

“After (the additional bowler) joined, everything changed for our season,” Miller said.

The team hopes to qualify for state next year, according to Miller.