By TOMMY REZAC
St. Joseph Post
The St. Joseph Central bowling team is in Springfield this weekend competing for a state championship.
The Indians have won two state titles - the most recent coming in 2018. First-year head coach and Central bowling alum Tyson Cook says the Indians have had a long tradition of making the state tournament.
"Central has been to state the last 6-7 years we've had a bowling team," Cook told St. Joseph Post. "I bowled for the team for four years when I was in high school. We went to state all four years, and they started the program 2-3 years before that. Central has won twice and has had top five finishes pretty much every other year."
Central is taking five bowlers to state this year and will compete against 23 other teams. The 2022 Missouri Bowling Properties Association Pepsi High School State Championship begins on Saturday morning at 9 a.m. at Andy B's in Springfield, where the the Indians will compete against 23 other teams.
Senior Trey Myers is headed to Baker University in Kansas this coming school year on a $20,000 bowling scholarship. He says it's taken a lot of hard work for Central to have gotten to this point.
"It takes a lot of cooperation," he said. "It also takes a lot of practice. If you put enough work into something, you'll definitely get good at it. We have been bowling for multiple years. We just work really well as a team. We have some team chemistry going on."
The Indians qualified for state by finishing third out of 20 teams at a tournament in Lee's Summit in mid-April. Freshman and leadoff bowler Jayden Myers says he's confident in his team's ability, as they've faced a lot of tough competition to reach this point.
"It's good to make it to state," he said, "knowing we have talent and...I feel cool and confident about the whole thing and I'm ready to go."
As the leadoff bowler, Myers says he feels that he has an important role in setting the tone for a good round.
"Whenever you throw a good ball, it gets the whole team going," he explained. "If you throw something good, it'll get your team revved up too."
Whatever happens this weekend, Cook is proud to lead his alma mater back to the state championships in his first year as the head man.
"I'm really proud of these boys," Cook said. "They put in a lot of hard work over the year. They've really grown as bowlers and I'm excited to see what they do."
You can follow Tommy on Twitter @TommyKFEQ and St. Joseph Post @StJosephPost.