COLUMBUS – Versailles entered Wayne Webb’s Columbus Bowl with high expectations.
This was the Tigers’ third consecutive trip to the Ohio High School Athletic Association boys bowling state tournament. Sixteen schools entered the qualifying round looking to make the final tournament of eight schools. The Tigers would finish 13th with 3,335 pins.
“It was a struggle today,” Versailles coach Tyler Phlipot said. “The lanes were tough. We couldn’t string strikes together. You have to string a lot of strikes in a row to advance today.”
The Tigers faced an uphill battle all day. After the opening game they trailed the final qualifying position by 95 pins.
Scoring picked up in game two, and the team’s 954 ranked ninth. This would be the Versailles high-water mark for the day as in the last game the Tigers rolled a 944.
The Tigers finished the three games with 2,810 pins, which put them in 13th place, trailing the final playoff position by 119 pins with three baker games yet to bowl.
Coach Phlipot used the baker games to get some state tournament exposure for his team.
“Our bakers were down, but we got some kids some experience there, to get their feet wet,” he said.
“The kids bowled really well,” Phlipot continued. “Luke (Shellhaas) had a 623. Alex (Groff) had 587 and Brody (Hyre) 586. All in all a great season.”
The team included Michael Hemmelgarn, Alex Groff, Kyle Cotner, Jacob Wenig, Brody Hyre, Aydan Moran, Luke Shellhaas and Brandon Bradley.