By Dean Acker
By Register Bowling Columnist
The coaches and bowlers from Madison Southern and Madison Central were optimistic about the chances for one or more team members advancing to the regional finals at the second-annual KHSAA Region 8 tournament and a possible trip to the state tournament in Louisville.
The event was held at the Forest Lanes in Corbin last weekend. The team competition was held on Saturday and the individual competition on Sunday.
Unfortunately, the local teams did not reach their goals.
The local keglers ran into some strong competition as evidenced by the highest boy’s series of 722, which included a 278 game.
Also, the local high school bowlers had more trouble than usual picking up spares. As a result, their scores did not come up to the level they had been recording during the latter part of the season.
Central and Southern were joined in the tournament by teams from Clark County, Corbin, East Jessamine, West Jessamine, Fleming County, Lee County, Lynn Camp, Montgomery County, Rowan County and Wayne County.
Each of the 12 schools entered four boys and four girls in the individual event. Each bowler rolled three games and the eight with the highest scores advanced to the semifinals. The semifinalists then bowled two more games with the top four moving to the stepladder finals and a chance to go to the state tournament.
Southern’s Rebecca Sowder was the only local bowler to make it to the semifinals as she qualified for the final semifinal spot in the girl’s singles. She bowled games of 147 and 169 in the two semifinal games to move up in the standings, but she fell one place short of making the finals.
The best games for the other Southern girls were 145 each by Ciara Plants and Shania Wilmot and 140 by Megan Faught.
Faught, Plants and Wilmot finished 23rd, 25th and 27th, respectively, in the final standings for the girls as determined by the bowlers’ series scores.
The best games for the Central girls were 160 by Kaylee Speakman, 135 by Debborah Harrison, 119 by Elizabeth Rodgers and 99 by Danielle Harrison.
Speakman placed 13th and Debborah Harrison 20th in the final standings for the girls.
Caleb Holbrook, from Southern, bowled the top game for the Madison County participants with a 221 score, which was part of a 571 series. Holbrook’s series score tied him for 12th place in the final boy’s standings with Central’s Adam Cromer, whose best game was 207.
The best games for the other Southern boys were 204 by Brian Ford, 197 by Jared Long and 166 by Dakota Megyesi.
Long finished 25th and Ford 29th in the final boy’s standings.
The best games for the other Central boys were 195 by Daelyn White, 180 by Grant Willoughby and 148 by Josh Maynard.
The series scores for White and Willoughby ranked them 30th and 32nd among the 48 entries.
Each school entered eight bowlers in the seeding round for the team competition. The total of the top six scores were used to place each school in brackets for the Baker-style matches in which five team members alternate rolling a frame.
The schools bowl best three-of-five Baker games to advance in the team tournament.
The highest games bowled in the seeding round were 190 by Brian Ford and 155 by Rebecca Sowder for the Southern boys and girls and 184 by Daelyn White and 150 by Debborah Harrison for the Central boys and girls.
The Southern girls, coached by Margaret Tilsley, earned the fourth seed. The Lady Eagles won one Baker game against Lee County, but suffered three narrow losses by four pins, five pins and six pins which eliminated them from the tournament.
The ninth-seeded Southern boys lost 3-0 to Lee County in the first round. The Southern boys are coached by Randy Burgess.
Coach Mark Harrison’s Central boys earned the sixth seed and beat Clark County 3-1 in the first round, but lost 3-0 to the eventual boy’s champions — Montgomery County — in the second round.
The Central girls qualified for the eighth seed, but lost 3-1 to Lynn Camp in the first round. The Central girls are coached by Johnny Harrison.
Montgomery County and Fleming County finished in the top two spots for the boys and qualified for the state tournament.
The Fleming County and East Jessamine girls earned a trip to the state tournament by finishing first and second, respectively.
The 2014 Region 8 Tournament is scheduled for the Galaxy Center.