A big turnout this fall and a trio of returning players has Sequim High bowling coach Randy Perry optimistic for this year’s team.
“I have three (returners) that can carry the team a little bit,” Perry said.
Returning sophomores Madison McKeown and Gabriella Mattern-Hall and junior Trinity Henderson look to bolstering a squad that struggled with turnout in recent years and went 1-10 last season.
McKeown in particular had a breakout season as a freshman in 2018-2019. She was ninth overall at districts and second among state tourney-qualifying individuals after averaging nearly 160 pins per game.
At the state 1A/2A tourney she placed 21st overall, racking up 899 pins for an average just under 150, and a tourney-best 187 pins in her second-to-last game.
“I don’t see any reason why she can’t average 150,” Perry said.
Along with Henderson and Mattern-Hall, the Wolves have 12 newcomers — and possibly more, Perry said, as fall sports seasons end.
Several team members have bowled just a couple of times in their loves, so Perry will have plenty of instruction to hand out.
“That to me is what coaching is about,” he said. “Once the girls come out (they see) it’s fun. They’re always doing something.”
With no bowling alley in Sequim, the Wolves’ home matches are once again at Port Angeles’ Laurel Lanes.
The Wolves’ weekly schedule in 2019-2020 sees few “double” weeks (two matches in the same week), which Perry said is a good thing for his relatively inexperienced team.
“The girls won’t get burned out,” he said. “Plus, with the number of girls (on the roster), maybe they come here and practice on their own.”
When Sequim bowlers take to the lanes, they’ll be battling perennially tough teams. The Olympic League features both district runner-up Olympic and fourth-place finisher Klahowya. At last year’s state tourney, Klahowya took sixth and Olympic was seventh.
But with his three returners potentially averaging between 130 and 150 per game, Perry said the Wolves can compete with those squads.
Wolves fall in opener
The Wolves struggled in their season-opening match, dropping a 7-0 decision at Bremerton in on Nov. 5.
McKeown led the way for Sequim with 209 pins (125-84) and Henderson was second with 197 (98-99), but the host Knights topped Sequim 527-414 and 485-415 in regular games, and 118-80 and 110-87 in Baker-format games.
Sequim is back in action in their home opener on Nov. 14 at Port Angeles’ Laurel Lanes against 1A powerhouse Klahowya. The Wolves then host North Mason on Nov. 21.