It’s been a great season to date, but Coach Yazell’s team is far from being done
IVAN K. RICE l email@example.com
LOUISVILLE, KY – One of the best teams in this town that’s having an outstanding season is probably getting the least amount of coverage and support when it comes to other sports but regardless, it hasn’t stopped coaches Johnny Yazell and David Hooper Bourbon County Colonels bowling team from flourishing at the lanes.
A program that took off under former Coach Mike Kearns, along with having two individuals (Wesley Yazell and Shane Dunsing) recently win state singles titles, is still knocking down pins at a high level under Yazell and Hooper and by later today, they could easily be crowned as region team champions, which is something this perennial power bowls for each year.
Although they lost Midway University standout Deven Hooper off last season’s team that just missed a shot at qualifying to the state by one spot, the Colonels have more than made up for the departure of Deven with the likes of the junior trio of Logan Hooper (Deven’s brother), Matthew Yazell, and Cole Knore.
“Our boys team has a very good chance at making it to state. Conditions are tough and the region is very talented but we are confident after the season we have had,” Yazell shared through a message, where he added that his team beat the defending state champions (Paul L. Dunbar) three times this season.
Bourbon bowled in six tourneys this year including four mini regions. They placed first four times and third once, which lets the coach know that if they show up and take care of business, they should win the region. “Yes, we have a very good chance – if we do our job the way we have all year!”
The coach also feels that two of his bowlers (Yazell and Cole) could get in the top four after placing in the top eight a year ago at the region. Knore placed ninth. “Individually, we have several boys very capable of making it to state.”
Yazell went on to add that their region runs four mini region shootout tournaments throughout the season and they keep standings by the point system, and depending on how each bowler finished each tournament, the top 10 at the end were named to the all-region team and Yazell (4th) and Knore (10th) made the All-Region 7 team.
For Knore, that’s pretty good considering he joined the team because his friend was bowling.
“I got into bowling because my friend (Logan) told me about it and I joined just to have fun. Later on, I found it really enjoyable and continued to bowl.”
When asked about his team’s expectations at region, he had this to say. “I expect us to win, because this year we have exceeded all my expectations so far and I’ve been very happy about that.” As far as his individual game, Knore feels that it’s more consistent and he has learned more things but he’s not satisfy. “I’m still trying to bowl my first 300, which is my second main goal, right behind going to state!”
Matthew Yazell said that being on the bowling team is fun, especially when he first joined and his older brother (Wesley) was on the team. But just like his brother, Matthew has high hopes as well.
“I’ve been bowling for as long as I can remember and I’ve always enjoyed the people in the sport and the sport itself. But I would like for our team to win state and as for me, my goal is to go to state and hopefully win it!”
The Lady Colonels will also bowl today and tomorrow and lone senior Katie Scenters talked a little about her time on the team and what her future plans may be after her bowling days are over at Bourbon.
“Being on the bowling team at Bourbon is truly the best. The people are great and pretty much a family. I got into bowling once my dad started in a league and it looked fun so, I wanted to try. Scenters said that she would like her team to do well at region and qualify for state but when it’s over, she’s looking forward to graduation and then heading to Midway University to continue her bowling career.
The boys Region 7 “team” championship rounds will start this morning at 8:30 and the girls teams will start bowling at 1:00 this afternoon. The individual bowling championships will be contested tomorrow. Both day’s competitions will be held at the Executive Strike & Spare in Louisville, with Anderson County being the host.
The KHSAA State Bowling Tournament is to take place February 6-8 at Kingpin Lanes in Jeffersontown.