By Josh Bronson
Pilot staff writer
Bowlers from Brookings-Harbor High School displayed their prowess as all three teams reached the semifinals in the varsity and JV brackets at Azalea Lanes on Sunday.
The Bruin varsity team took second place in their division while the JV Blue and the JV Gold teams took second and third, respectively, in the JV bracket.
"Phenomenal," Coach Randy Scruggs said. "That's the only way to put it. The kids did great."
In the varsity division, the Bruins started out slow, but gradually became more comfortable with the magnitude of the event and more confident in their abilities.
To start out the day, each team, which consists of five members, bowled three regular games, with each team member bowling all 10 frames.
After the three regular games, each team bowled 12 baker games, where each team member bowls two frames per game.
The scores from the regular games and baker games are then totaled and the top four teams advance to the semifinals.
In the regular games, the Bruins struggled early and bowled a combined score of 728 after the first game.
But in the final two games, the Bruins continued to improve and bowled an 839 in game two and a 980 in game three, the second highest score on the day.
In game three, Cody Stumpenhaus bowled a 201 while anchor Steven Scruggs bowled a 212.
The Bruins stood in third place after the regular games but, once again, started off slow in the first set of baker games.
However, the Bruins bounced back in sets two and three, rounding out the baker games with a stellar 221.
The surge in the final two sets lifted the Bruins into second place overall and earned them a first game bye.
Third-seeded South Medford defeated fourth-seeded Roseburg to face the Bruins in the next game, which consisted of two baker games to see who would advance to the finals to play top-seeded Grants Pass.
The Bruins beat South Medford by 19 pins in the first game (180-161) and got a pair of strikes from Andrew Troendle as well as strikes from Stumpenhaus, Andrew Golding and Scruggs.
In game two, South Medford bounced back to beat the bruins by 16 pins (195-179), but three strikes by Scruggs, including two in the 10th frame, helped save the Bruins as they held on for a three pin win.
It was the Grants Pass Cavemen who got off to the hot start in the finals as they beat the Bruins by 53 pins in the opening game (200-147).
The Bruins hung on to win game two (140-135), but still couldn't overcome the insurmountable lead built in game one as they lost to the Cavemen by a total of 48 pins (335-287).
In the finals, the Bruins got two strikes a piece from Stumpenhaus and Blake Peters, while Troendle and Golding each had one.
"I could tell they were a little shell-shocked in the finals," Scruggs said. "But to qualify second, win a semifinal match and then get to the finals ... it's amazing."
After the qualifying rounds, the JV Blue team stood in first place while the JV Gold qualified in third place.
The Blue team got a 216 game from Bryan Holteen and a 203 from Skyler Shuford in the opening round while the Gold team got a 222 game out of Dillon Schofield and a 202 out of Skyler Ray.
In the semifinals, the Gold team took on Grants Pass and took a slight two pin lead after taking game one 144-142 with a pair of strikes from Schofield as well as strikes from Ray and Paul Dollar.
But in the second game, the Bruins left four open frames and let Grants Pass come back to take game two (147-143) which gave the Cavemen a two pin win (289-287).
In the finals, the JV Blue team struggled to find their rhythm as they lost game one to the Cavemen by 18 pins (123-141).
The Bruins bowled an identical score in game two and, although they beat Grants pass in the second game (123-121), they still lost by a total of 16 pins (262-246).
While the boys got to bowl at home, the girls team had to travel to Roxy Ann Lanes in Medford.
The girls team finished seventh out of eight teams in the event, but were only less than 100 points behind South Umpqua in sixth place.
The Bruins were recognized after the event for their sportsmanship as they received five team sportsmanship awards and three individual sportsmanship awards.
Each coach is allowed to hand out one team award and three individual awards to teams or athletes they believe represent superior sportsmanship.
On Sunday, Dec. 2, the varsity boys and girls teams will be bowling at Showtime Family Lanes in Grants Pass while the JV boys will be at Nickel Bowl in Myrtle Creek.