By Chris Chaney
The Milford boys’ and girls’ bowling teams got off to great starts in the 2012-13 season, both notching records above .500, but with some work to do over a busy final month of the season to prepare for the sectional tournament in the second week of February.
The girls are leading the way for the Eagles, notching an impressive 6-2 record over their first eight matches. Also during that stretch, the Lady Eagles have earned some experience by bowling in two tournaments, the Ohio High School Invitational “Kick Off” in Columbus and the Holiday Classic Tournament at Western Bowl on the west side of Cincinnati.
The Lady Eagles are currently in a tie for second place in the Eastern Cincinnati Conference with Loveland, and stand one-half game behind league leaders Glen Este. The Lady Trojans are 6-1 in the league, while the Lady Eagles are just 5-1.
Milford’s lone league loss came at the hands of Walnut Hills on Dec. 5. The team’s only other loss came in the season opener to Goshen.
The team is led by a pair of upperclassmen who are busting it up for the Lady Eagles. Junior Delaney Ward and senior Megan Marcum have almost identical averages and pin totals over the first half of the season.
Ward is in the lead for now as far as averages go with a 152.6, but Marcum is nipping at her heels with a 151.2 average. Those averages rank the two Milford bowlers as 12th and 13th in the league, respectively.
And while the Ward-Marcum pair boast averages than 15 pins more than their other teammates, the Lady Eagles have a solid group that goes out and knocks down between 120-135 pins consistently to buoy Milford’s team score.
Lauren Best, Madison Canada, Brandi Norman and Sarah Schmidtgelsling all have high games over 160 meaning any given day the Lady Eagles can show up and blow their opposition out of the water.
For the boys’ team, the 2012-13 campaign has been up-and-down. At 5-4 overall and 4-3 in the ECC, Milford’s record would lead you to believe that the team is a middle-of-the-road talent when in fact, the Eagles have some of the elite talent in the conference.
A streaking team from the word “go,” the Eagles dropped their opening match of the season to Goshen before rattling off five consecutive wins, four of which came against league opponents.
However, since their 2,531-1,785 drubbing of Amelia on Dec. 12, Milford has been unable to put another mark in the win column, losing three straight culminating with a 52-pin loss to Loveland on Jan. 7.
During that three match losing streak, the Eagles haven’t been necessarily out-bowled, eyt they haven’t been able convert on their opportunities, losing all three by less than 100 pins.
The Eagles squad is a solid one with their top five bowlers all inside the top 30 in the ECC. Led by a trio made up of Alex Vandergrift, Kyle Chance and Nick Tringelof, Milford has three bowlers who consistenly push the 200-pin barrier.
Vandergrift has a 191.9 average while Chance is not far behind with a 191.0 and Tringelhof goes for 190.6.
Those three are supported by Steven Gillespie’s 178.1 average and Zach Wilson’s 166.5 standard.
So, while the record may not look to be too impressive at first blush, the Eagles can roll the rock.
Luckily for them, most of their matches come after the calendar flips to 2013. The Eagles have 10 more matches before the beginning of the postseason and two more tournaments in which they can concentrate on picking up their spares and capitalizing on their opportunities to make a run at a league title.
The Eagles’ next match is on Thursday, Jan. 10 when they face off with Loveland at Loveland Lanes.