Bowling falls short of state; Neal prepares for individual competition

Bryan Hudnell | Staff Writer

After securing their first team sectional win in nearly a decade, the Mason boys bowling team traveled to Beavercreek to compete at the district match in pursuit of a state championship appearance.

With a sectional victory in their back pocket, The Comets approached the match with a renewed sense of confidence. Senior team captain David Neal said the team as a whole was capable of advancing to Columbus.

“We definitely felt that we could advance as a team due to our success at sectionals,” Neal said. “It showed us that we were there for a reason and that we deserve to be in that spot.”

The Comets placed eighth overall with a pin total of 2,623 and were 64 pins away from qualifying for state. Fellow GMC competitor Oak Hills took home first place and will be going to state. Despite the team not going to state, Neal said he was pleased with the performance of the team and is optimistic for the team going forward.

“Our team this year really surprised me,” Neal said. “Being the senior leader and only having 2 returning starters from last year’s team, I was really happy with how our underclassmen stepped up.

Neal will be competing on March 11 for an individual state title after placing second overall with a pin total of 635. Junior Evan Haas just missed state after placing 21st with a score of 559. Neal said the state match will bring new challenges.

“Heading to state individually is a hard transition because bowling is a team sport at high school and college levels,” Neal said. “I’m going to just go in there and calm myself to where I can do what I’ve done all my life. My mentality going into it is to make your spares, and the strikes will come.”