Monday, March 4, 2013

State bowling tournament a unique event

Yes, that's a Kobe Bryant Fathead.
In case you missed it, Camden's boys bowling team made its first trip to the state bowling tournament Saturday and did very, very well.

This was also my first trip to the state bowling tournament, and boy was it a unique experience.

First, imagine a normal sized crowd for a different event - say basketball or volleyball. Now picture all these people not in a gym, but in a very constricted space between the lanes and the back wall of the Strike N Spare in Mattydale.

"Definitely loud," said Camden bowler Andrew Bourgeois of the event.

"Hectic and loud," added teammate A.J. Welch.

Maybe the intense battle for third place between the Blue Devils and Greece-Athena had their two lanes a little louder than the rest. Supporters of each squad got louder and louder with each ball thrown. The Spartans cheering section even had chants for five consecutive strikes as well as a guy waving a Kobe Bryant Fathead throughout the match (because, well, why not?).

Fans from both sides also got to witness an impressive performance from G-A junior Bryce Hook, who bowled 11 straight strikes to start the fourth game. The raucous crowd did fall silent during his last ball, soaking in the fact that they could be witnessing history. Their voices merged into one audible groan when the dust settled and three pins were left standing, leaving Hook with a 297 game.

Perhaps the most impressive feat was put up by bowlers from around the state. During such a heated competition its easy to lose ones head and vent frustrations at teammates or opponents. It wasn't the case Saturday as bowlers cheered for each other and carried themselves with great poise.

"It was nice," said Bourgeois. "A lot of people were very friendly. I had a good time."

And I'm sure he wasn't alone.


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