Bowling Season Recap


Since one of our most popular sports, basketball, falls in the Winter, we sometimes forget that there are other athletic teams competing during this time. I was lucky enough to talk with the 3 seniors on Lake’s Bowling to learn more about what the team is like, and get to know what the season looked like for the 18 athletes in the Lakes Girl’s Bowling program.

Sienna Stienke was the first of the 3 to become a member, joining during her Sophomore year. Ella and Taylor Marino, friends of Steinke, were persuaded to join the team during their Junior year so the team could grow. Up until a couple of seasons ago, Lakes and Antioch have a joint Bowling team, due to a lack of participants. Due to people like Steinke who wanted a separate team from Antioch, Lakes was finally able to become an independent Bowling team. So now, rather than playing with one another, the schools are now competitors at the bowling alley. Bowling isn’t like other sports, in the sense that the team is much smaller and the sport is almost entirely about mental toughness. While you practice and improve individually, the team eventually comes together and collectively grows which is reflected in their high scores. “You make strong connections with people because you see a small group of these girls every day,” Ella explained.

Since they’re spending so much time together, it’s no surprise that the team shares countless memories from the 2022-23 season. The 3 seniors listed the same memory from a tournament as their favorite. They stole food from a coaches’ meeting because they were hungry, and the trio got yelled at for this. Despite getting into some trouble, these girls had the same hilarious experience and will continue to retell this story for years to come. Along with sharing the same fond memory of bowling, the girls also agreed on the early wakeup times on the weekends being their least favorite part of the season. Since tournaments start early in the morning, these athletes had to sacrifice sleeping in, in order to compete. This loss of sleep ended up paying off, for the team was able to get better every day and get to the point where they are the best Girl’s bowling team that Lakes has ever had. On February 4, the team won Regionals for the first time in school history. This group of girls wouldn’t have been able to do this without the countless hours spent practicing and working to get better. Lakes Girl’s Bowling won with an impressive score of 5313 to show their dominance over the NLCC. This group of girls will forever be in Lakes Bowling history, as the first ones to clinch a Conference title. At sectionals, the team placed 5th with a score of 5220, and Sophomore Peyton Mezo placed 2nd in individuals with a score of 1178. For the first time in program history, Peyton Mezo represented Lakes Bowling over in Rockford at state. She ended her Sophomore season as 76th in the state with a score of 1,087. Having multiple talented members on the team means Lake’s Bowling has the ability to place high in more tournaments and potentially advance to state in future seasons.

Given the lack of attention that Bowling has, I push people to make a change and become members. This winter sport will put you into a tight-knit group of people all while learning a new skill.