Girls Bowling Finding its Identity


Jalen Flowers, Staff writer

After competing with stellar programs such as Collinsville and Highland in regionals last year, EHS solidified itself as a respectable girls bowling team in their conference. Performances by junior bowlers Corinna Winkler and Grace Kirkpatrick led the team to success last season.  This year, chemistry is helping the team find its identity.

“Most of us bowled last year and we all just support and help each other,” Winkler said, “We’re all really close and always encourage our teammates.”

In last year’s postseason, the team depended on their chemistry and teamwork. The girls who have come back to play have continued that theme.

“Grace Kirkpatrick has been improving her game every week,” head coach Deanne Voegele said.

Kirkpatrick has been bowling since her freshman year and led the team in bowling average last season. As a returning player, Kirkpatrick has adopted a leadership role and carries her passion for her sport to the alley.

“I can still vividly remember walking into Edison’s for the first time and not knowing what was going on,” Kirkpatrick said, “I just feel so much pride in all the things I have accomplished and all the people I have met.”

Although the team has seen recent success, bowling remains underrated at EHS.

“Recruitment of players has been a real challenge. We had to start the season with four players,” Voegele said. “When the two bowling alleys in town were demolished, many potential bowlers lost the opportunity to become a bowler. Now many high school students do not think about bowling as a sport.

Five players are required to have a full bowling team. Though the roster is not sizeable, the low number of players creates a close-knit environment for the bowlers.

“The best part is probably how much time I spend with my teammates,” Kirkpatrick said, “I just love getting to hang out with them.”

Being a part of a small community is part of being a bowler. Girls bowling is a tradition as old as EHS, but the team does not feel a connection to the school.

“I feel like to be underappreciated people would have to know we actually exist,” Kirkpatrick said. “Whenever I mention that I’m on the bowling team, people say they didn’t even know EHS has a bowling team.”

With multiple practices per week, plenty of opportunities to perform with their teammates, and a second chance sectionals this season, the bowlers have passion for their sport and unrelenting team chemistry.

“We just really love competing,” Kirkpatrick said, “I feel like nothing can stop us from just going to Edison’s and having fun.”