Faribault High School’s Bowling Club is nearing the conclusion of a successful season of play with a tournament scheduled for this weekend
This year’s bowling squad had a different look after the loss of last year’s senior class. With seven varsity players, seven JV players and two ninth-graders, this year’s squad was representative of the school at large.
Even though this year’s team might be less experienced, Coach Don Clayton said that he’s been impressed with the effort the team has put in at every meet this year.
“We’ve got some really good bowlers,” Clayton said. “They’re finding their skills and trying to have fun at the matches too.”
Faribault’s varsity bowling team competes in a South Central Conference against teams from other area cities, including Mankato, St. Peter and Owatonna. With a record of 5-9 and an average score of 168, the varsity team placed sixth out of seven teams in both categories.
The Junior Varsity squad fared better with a record of 10-4, putting it in a four-way tie for third place in a 10-team league. JV players posted an average score of 135, good for fourth best.
Faribault’s bowling club bowls “baker’s style,” giving five players the opportunity to bowl two sets each in a 10-set match. Clayton said that format of play helps to give players a feeling of teamwork and camaraderie.
Getting to travel to local bowling alleys on Saturday mornings for matchups against other local teams is also part of the fun. The team typically practices on the lanes at The Bashers Sports Bar and Grill. Unlike many area bowling alleys, Bashers eschews traditional wooden bowling lanes in favor of synthetic lanes. Clayton says that bowlers always enjoy traveling to bowl at different bowling alleys to see the unique characteristics of each alley.
This year’s team features several new members, including seventh-grader Caitlyn Cortez. Cortez said that while she’s been bowling for a few years now, she’s enjoying the sport even more now that she’s part of a team.
“I’ve really gotten to like bowling, it’s a fun hobby,” she said. “And I’ve made great friends through bowling and that keeps me coming back.”
All Faribault High School students are invited to join the bowling club every August. The club works hard to recruit students who have been involved with Faribo Youth Bowling, but no bowling experience is necessary.
“We’re open to anybody who’s bowled and those who haven’t,” Clayton said. “We work hard to teach them what they need to know in practice.”