DIXON – It’s almost crunch time for girls bowlers in Illinois, and the 41st annual Dixon Invitational on Saturday at Plum Hollow Lanes served as a good trial run for next week’s regionals.
The Duchesses appear ready to rock after placing sixth in a 22-team field. Their final total of 5,455 was bettered by only one team that will be in next week’s DeKalb Regional at Mardi Gras Lanes in DeKalb: Sycamore, which was second with a 5,873 total pinfall.
“I’m sure we left some pins on the deck that we shouldn’t have,” Dixon coach Larry LaCoursiere said, “but we fared well with the caliber of teams we had here at our invitational. To finish sixth, that puts us in a pretty good light where we stand next week for regional. If we can shoot that, I think we’ll make it to the sectional.”
Leading the way for the Duchesses was Alyssa Bonnette, who had a six-game score of 1,155. She opened with 194, 213 and 246 for a 653 morning series, then came home with 167, 192 and 143 for a 502 afternoon series.
The changing oil pattern in the afternoon was something she didn’t deal with as well as she had hoped.
“I couldn’t get my ball to make it all the way to the pocket,” Bonnette said. “When it did, it went too high and I left some crappy splits. Then I missed some spares I probably shouldn’t have.”
Melissa Bates (1,107), Riley Kavanaugh (1,078), Annie Hantke (1,058) and Allison Bay (1,057) rounded out the Dixon lineup.
Sterling placed 13th as a team with a pinfall of 4,962. Leading the Golden Warriors was Olivia Zinanni with a 1,136 score. She had a 589 in the morning, followed by 547 in the afternoon, with a high game of 210.
Kyleigh Glazier had a 1,059 total for Sterling, and was followed by Grace Schultz (939), Zoey Paone (938) and Alivia Salmon (890). Glazier had the Warriors’ high game with 212.
Oregon was right behind Sterling as a team with a 4,901, good for 14th place. Competing for the Hawks were Caitlyn Kaltenbrun (1,088), Rebbeca Meyers (979), Taylor Wilson (960), Hannah Kaltenbrun (952) and Sammantha Meyers (922). Caitlyn Kaltenbrun had the team’s high game, a 215.
Like Dixon, Oregon will compete in the DeKalb Regional next week. Sterling heads to the Rock Island Regional.
The class of the field was Lockport, which won its third consecutive Dixon title with a pinfall of 6,002. The Porters have now won crowns at Dixon, Rock Island, Prospect, Lockport, Fenton and Palatine this season.
“We enjoy coming out here, and we’ve come out here all 20 years I’ve been coaching,” Lockport coach Art Cwudzinski said. “We come out here and we execute.”
Cwudzinski’s lineup featured the class of the field in senior Bailey Delrose. Using a ball called “Intense” in the morning, she had games of 255, 258 and 277 for a 790 series. In the afternoon, she switched to a ball called “Spoiler” and had games of 203, 258 and 222 for a 683 series.
Her 1,473 six-game total was her second-best this season, topped only by a 1,517. A Maryville University commit, Delrose has won 8 of 9 invites this season, and she carries a 230 average.
“This is definitely a good note to go into the postseason,” said Delrose, who placed 7th at state a year ago. “I have a lot of confidence in my abilities, so I’ll just do my best and see what happens.”
The top game of the day belonged to Rock Island’s Lynzee Quade, who posted a 288 in her fifth game. She opened with 10 strikes before leaving the 4 and 7 pins on her 11th ball.
“I was good for the first 10, but going into that 11 shot, I started getting shaky knowing everyone had stopped and was watching me,” said Quade, whose 1,424 total was good for second behind Delrose. “That’s what got me.”