Albert Lea bowling teams save the best for end of the season

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 16, 2007

The Albert Lea varsity and junior varsity bowling teams will both move on to end-of-year tournaments.

The junior varsity ended the regular season in third place with a record of 7-7.

The team will advance to participate in the 32-team Minnesota Junior Varsity Qualifier Invitational Tournament Sunday at Stadium Lanes in Duluth.

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The tournament will consist of 8 to 10 games of qualifying pool play and then two-game match play. Should the team finish in the top seven teams it will then advance to the Junior Varsity State Tournament Sunday, Dec. 2 in Andover.

The junior varsity team is made up of two seventh-graders, one eight-grader, two ninth-graders, one sophomore and one junior.

Listed on the roster are Cody Olson, Tyler Enderson, Tucker Akemann, Colby Fjeldberg, Tom Tiegs, Nick DeRaad and Aleah Roberts. The team is coached by Carilee Squires-Harte.

The varsity team finished its season in second place with a record of 10-6 behind a very good Owatonna team.

Albert Lea had to play Owatonna four times as opposed to the other five teams playing them only twice due to two position rounds. Owatonna with a team game average of 199 topped the Tigers three of the four matches during the season. The team is made up of one seventh-grader, two juniors, and three seniors.

Team members are Tyler Espe, Ben Robinson, Ross Gerhardt, Brian Yost, Rob Westendorf and Derreck Walk. The team is coached by Dave Squires and Carilee Squires-Harte.

The South Central varsity conference tournament was held at Bowlero Lanes in St. Peter Nov. 10. In order to move on in the conference tournament match play, the team must win three of five games. The Tiger team entered the tournament with an average of 180 per game.

Albert Lea defeated LeSueur by winning three of four games with a match play average of 187 per game.

Albert Lea then defeated St. Peter by winning three of four games with a match play average of 190 per game. The team then had to face the No. 1 ranked team from Owatonna that was the regular season champions with a record of 16-1.

The Albert Leans handed them their second loss of the year and the right to advance to the 2007 Minnesota State High School Tournament on Dec. 1 at Earle Brown Bowling Center in Brooklyn Center.

The team averaged 210 per game against their Owatonna opponent. Senior and captain Walk stepped up large at the anchor position against Owatonna by rolling 10 strikes, one spare and one open for a 91.6 percentage of fill rate.

Other accolades are to be delivered to seventh-grader Espe who had 10 strikes, 13 spares and just one open during the tournament for a 95.8 percentage of fill rate.

Yost was selected to the all-conference team. The all-conference team nomination is based upon good sportsmanship, regular play and season percentage of fill rate and voted on by the coaches from the seven teams. A

coach is not allowed to vote on members from their own team.

The all-conference team will be made up of three from Owatonna, one from Mankato West, one from Mankato East, one from Faribault and one from St. Peter. Last year, the South Central all-conference team placed third in the tournament.