Bowlers punch tickets to state

LAKEWOOD — Talk about dominance.

Of the eight teams to advance to the state’s premier bowling event out of the West Central District Tournament Saturday, seven hail from the Narrows League. Of those remaining seven, five come from the Bridge Division.

And within that five lies the hope of both Central Kitsap and Olympic, whose squads have advanced after proving to be among the elite teams in one of the state’s toughest leagues.

CK finished third at the WCD tourney, held at Bowlero Lanes in Lakewood, with 3,093 total pins. Olympic was right behind in fifth place with 2,959.

“Some of them were there last year,” CK coach Bruce Welling said, “and some of them weren’t. So they just want to go back and show everybody. If Wilson has a bad day and we have a good one, we could upend them.”

Wilson, which took the district title that belonged to the Cougars last year, had a high pin count of 3,463. Wilson, residing in the Bay Division, will join Stadium as the only representatives from the Narrows on the other side of the water. They’ll join Spanaway Lake as the only non-Bridge teams to advance from the WCD.

South Kitsap took second, Shelton fourth and Bremerton 8th on Saturday.

The state tournament will begin Friday at Leilani Lanes in Seattle at 10 a.m., finishing Saturday at 8 a.m. with Baker matches. Of the 16 teams in the tournament, eight will go home after day one.

While Wilson’s Jessica Bzdel led all bowlers with a 644 three-game series, CK’s Kayla Haley and Olympic’s Erin Howard weren’t far behind.

Haley finished second, rolling a 606, and Howard took third overall with a 585. Both were named to the all-tournament team as well.

CK and Oly will each get in three practices this week at All Star Lanes & Casino before the state tourney.

“We’ll make it short and sweet so they can get out and do other stuff,” Welling said. “We let them be kids for a little while.”

For CK, Welling said the girls already know how to handle themselves in high-pressure situations. Last week’s Narrows League/Independent Tournament was certainly loud, and the West Central District Tournament was no exception.

“They say Leilani (Lanes) is a little bit different,” Welling said. “But it’s very loud there too. But loud doesn’t affect us. They’re going to be a little bit nervous but they’re going to be alright.”

Cassie Ogle (483 series) and Miranda Bateman (450) finished high for CK, while Oly’s top marks included Sarah Crawford (467) and Kristy Szyborski (454). Welling said the main thing now is just keeping momentum.

“They’ve come a long way,” he said. “Everything has clicked so far.”

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