Bowling tunes up in Music City

By John Ostapowicz 

The Youngstown State bowling team finished out its regular season on a positive note at the Vanderbilt Music City Classic at the Smyrna Bowling Center, March 17 to 19.

The Penguins started Day One of the tournament with a 4-1. The only loss of the day was against fifth-ranked Stephen F. Austin State University, 1,006-1,036. 

Throughout the day, the Penguins averaged 200.96 pins per game, totaling 5,024 pins over five Baker matches. 

The team started strong, as it toppled the seventh-seeded North Carolina A&T State University, 1,012-953. The women followed up the victory with three straight wins against Long Island University, Marian University of Wisconsin and Emmanuel College. 

Over four straight matches, Youngstown State out bowled its opponents by 455 pins. Over 25 games, YSU topped an overall score of 200, 13 times. 

The highest score of the day was a 249 against the Ladyjacks, despite a 54-pin lead over three games. The Penguins saw the match flip when SFA bowled 11 strikes in game four, totaling 263 pins. 

The bowling team headed into Day Two 102 pins ahead of sixth place. The Penguins followed up their dynamic performance picking up a win over the second-ranked Vanderbilt University and Wagner College. 

Although Youngstown State finished 2-3 in traditional matches, the bowling team averaged 211.3 pins per game in its first two matches. 

Individually, junior Madyson Marx led the way with a five-game set of 1,047 that placed her 21st. Freshman Hope Bunk and sophomore Kirsten Moore followed suit with scores of 1,020 and 924, respectively. Bunk placed 29th averaging 204 in five games, while Moore placed 73rd, averaging 184.8 over five games. 

Sophomore Madison Doseck believes the team has a deep roster with adaptable players. She played a key role on Day Two as she bowled a 199.

“I feel like we have a deep roster,” Doseck said. “We are able to bring anybody in, whether it’s match one or match five.” 

The day flipped as the Penguins averaged 179.3 pins in their final three matches, which dropped them to the eighth spot with one day left of qualifying. 

The bowling team finished the tournament strong with a win over Maryville University of St. Louis, but could not defeat SFU in the final two matches against the Ladyjacks.

As a team, Youngstown State finished in eighth place at the Music City Classic, while Sam Houston State University won the tournament. 

With the final tournament of the regular season, head coach Doug Kuberski knows the importance of carrying the momentum into the postseason. 

“You’re always looking to continue to grow,” Kuberski said. “We’re focusing on those little things and getting better as a team on and off the lanes.” 

Throughout the 2022-23 regular season, the Penguins earned two second place finishes at the MOTIV Penguin Classic and the Dezy Strong Classic. The team also earned a third place finish at the Eastern Shore Hawk Classic and fourth place at the Big Red Invitational. 

The bowling team looks to finish its season on a high note, with a win at the Southland Bowling Championships in Rowlett Texas at the Rowlett Bowlarama. 

The Penguins will take on Sam Houston in a double-elimination tournament, the first two rounds are set for March 24.