By ROB JONAS
SCHENECTADY – Once Mohonasen got rolling, no one could stand in its way.
The Mighty Warriors opened the afternoon session with their two best games of the day – a 983 and a 995 – to build a huge lead and cruised to the Class A title at the Section 2 girls bowling championships Thursday, Feb. 7, at Boulevard Bowl.
It’s the second consecutive trip to states for Mohonasen, which placed fourth in the large school division last year.
“It’s a crazy feeling to go back with teammates that I’ve bowled with for a long time,” said sophomore Kenzie Simmons, who led the Mighty Warriors with a 1,266 series.
Class B champion Cohoes clinched a berth in the small school division after finishing the day with a score of 5,351. The Tigers closed the day with a 928 and a 914 in the final two games to sail past the competition.
“I’m extremely proud of them. They worked really hard to get here,” said Cohoes coach Pam Bertrand. “I hope they’re proud of themselves, too.”
It took a while for Mohonasen to adjust to the lane conditions at Boulevard Bowl. The Mighty Warriors posted scores of 800 and 851 in the first two games of the morning session before rolling a 973 game to take a seven-pin lead over Colonie at the break. From that point on, Mohonasen dominated to finish nearly 300 pins ahead of the Garnet Raiders.
“They’re very capable of turning around and bowling like that,” said Mohonasen coach John Dennis. “We had to battle some fatigue [in the sixth game], but we held up well.”
Simmons was a major part of Mohonasen’s success. She found her stride in the first two games of the afternoon session, rolling consecutive scores of 246 and 266 on her way to compiling the top six-game total of the day.
“I pretty much stayed calm, I found my mark and I knew where to throw it,” said Simmons.
“She’s had a lot of high games during the season,” said Dennis. “She’s had a 268, a 265 and a 260.”
Two more Mohonasen bowlers had strong overall performances. Amber Lupi rolled a six-game series of 1,158, and Katie Adamec contributed a 1,056 series to help the Mighty Warriors pull away from the pack.
Cohoes was challenged by Lansingburgh for the Class B title during the morning session, but the Knights faded in the afternoon while the Tigers heated up. Cohoes finished nearly 400 pins ahead of Lansingburgh after leading the Knights by 81 pins at the break.
“We were trying to focus on our own game and not on anything going on around us,” said Bertrand.
Cohoes’ Abby Houser had the high triple of the day in Class B with a 627 series, and teammate Madison Dunn posted the high single with a 241. Julie Baker added a 540 triple for the Tigers.
Middleburgh claimed the Class C/D championship with a score of 4,936. Jaidyn Rose led the Knights with a six-game total of 1,197, which earned her a berth on the Section 2 team heading to Syracuse. Carolyn Shultes also qualified for states as an individual with a six-game pin fall of 1,139.
“[The team] bowled really well in the morning,” said Middleburgh coach Richard Shultes. “They struggled a bit in the afternnon. The lanes seemed to get a bit tighter.”
Class A: Mohonasen 5,429, Colonie 5,141, Columbia 4,880, Schenectady 4,769, Bethlehem 4,524, Niskayuna 4,488, Ballston Spa 4,428, Averill Park 4,381, Saratoga Springs 4,214
Class B: Cohoes 5,351, Lansingburgh 4,968, Schalmont 4,653, Cobleskill-Richmondville 4,033, Mechanicville 3,715, Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk 3,689, Fonda-Fultonville 3,131
Class C/D: Middleburgh 4,936, Maple Hill 4,720, Fort Plain 4,315, Schoharie 4,314, Duanesburg 4,098, Canajoharie 3,866, Berne-Knox-Westerlo 3,794, Mayfield 3,764, Oppenheim-Ephretah/St. Johnsville 3,005
All-Section 2 team: Jaidyn Rose (Middleburgh) 1,197, Leigha Henkel (Hoosic Valley) 1,180, Lauren Buess (Guilderland) 1,160, Carolyn Shultes (MIddleburgh) 1,139, Katie Polomaine (Schenectady) 1,116, Hannah Jacobs (Lansingburgh) 1,110