JONESBORO, AR (astateredwolves.com) – The Arkansas State women’s bowling squad put together back-to-back victories after a first round defeat to come back and claim third place at the Mid-Winter Invitational Sunday at the Jonesboro Bowling Center.
A-State (48-17) faced a hot Vanderbilt team in its first match of the day and couldn’t cool down the Commodores in a 4-2 loss. The Red Wolves took the first game 235-204, but Vandy struck back with a 256-226 win to tie things at 1-1. Vanderbilt won a very close game three 216-214, but A-State bounced back with a 231-162 victory in game four. However, the Commodores were able to close the match out with two straight wins (258-221 and 185-160).
The Red Wolves fell behind early in their second match of the day against Wisconsin-Whitewater 3-0 (227-202, 233-172, and 211-186), but never quit as A-State got on the board with a 185-154 win in game four. Arkansas State won games five (202-185) and six (225-194) to force a decisive game seven. Game seven wasn’t a contest though as the Red Wolves defeated the Warhawks 256-184 to earn the right to play for third place.
Vanderbilt took the first game of the third-place match 217-189, but didn’t have much success afterwards. A-State won games two (207-180) and three (200-186) before a decisive game four victory of 236-172 to take a 3-1 advantage in the match. Arkansas State won game five 212-186 to avenge its earlier loss to the Commodores and win third place with a 4-1 triumph in the match.
“Obviously, we wanted to do better than third in our own tournament,” A-State women’s bowling head coach Justin Kostick said. “However, we ended up with a 10-3 record, which was tied for the best in the event and is very impressive considering the field because we had nine of the top 10 teams in the country here. I’m also very proud of the team for coming back the way we did against UWW down 3-0 and I’m glad we were able to get the win over Vanderbilt after the loss to them earlier in the day.”
McKendree defeated Sam Houston State by a score of 4-2 to win the tournament as the Bearcats took down the Bearkats. SHSU defeated McKendree in its first match 4-2 to advance to the championship, but the Bearcats won over Vandy to earn the right to play for the championship. The Red Wolves tied Sam Houston for the best record in the tournament at 10-3, while SHSU accumulated the highest pinfall over all three days with 13,881.
Sam Houston State’s Janine Kuwahara was the tournament’s MVP after averaging a 221.40 per match during Saturday’s play. Vanderbilt’s Kristin Quah (220.80), SHSU’s Heather Penatzer (220.60), Wisconsin-Whitewater’s Sage Greenwood (218.20), and Vandy’s Giselle Poss (216.60) comprised the all-tournament team. A-State’s Jordan Richard just narrowly missed an all-tournament selection by finishing sixth overall with a 213.40 average.
Arkansas State will have a break next weekend before heading to the Prairie View A&M Invitational Jan. 29-31 in Arlington, Texas.