By David Carter/GCU Club Sports Web Marketing Intern
Next stop: Indianapolis, Indiana.
The GCU Men’s and Women’s Bowling teams will be heading to the “Crossroads of America” (where several major interstate highways connect and crisscross) to compete in the 2019 Collegiate Club Championships (CCC). There will be 24 teams on the men’s side (GCU is seeded No. 6), and 16 teams on the women’s side (the Lopes are No. 9).
While GCU Men’s Bowling Head Coach Ben Canfield always hopes for a title on each side, his expectations are staying down-to-earth.
“On the men’s side, we are looking to win it,” said Canfield after his team finished 4th at the United States Bowling Congress (USBC) Intercollegiate Team Championships (ITC) Sectionals in Dallas, Texas last month. “That is an attainable goal for us heading into it. That would be the first national championship in the program’s history.”
That finish not only gave them momentum for this tournament, but ensured they’d have one more trip to make after this, since it qualified the men’s team for the USBC ITC National tournament in Dayton, Ohio, April 17-20.
“On the women’s side, we finished 3rd last year,” added Canfield. “We just want to set a goal of continuing that level of performance at the tournament and equaling or bettering that finish.”
“We have been doing team leagues on Wednesdays and that has helped us work on competing under pressure and competing as a team,” said Lopes’ women’s bowler LeAnne Kommenich. “I think we could do really well.”
The 2019 CCC will be contested in a unique way. Both teams will bowl six matches each in pool play, which will determine their seeding in the elimination brackets. The men have five other teams in their pool play bracket, including Wright State University (OH), who is ranked 3rd in the final club bowling rankings. Meanwhile, the Lopes’ Women will clash with three other squad, including the top-ranked WSU Women’s team. The championship bracket is double elimination, so neither team can lose more than once and stay alive.
Both the men’s and women’s teams finished in the top-10 of the final club bowling rankings of the season, with the men finishing 7th and the women 9th.
Not that that matters to the players.
“You can be the lowest seeded team heading into the tournament but still place,” added Kommenich. “Everyone, including us, has a chance to win.”
The Lopes will head to Indianapolis to compete in the Collegiate Club Championships taking place Saturday and Sunday, April 6th and 7th. Follow GCU Bowling on Twitter or Facebook for event updates and details as the teams compete in Indianapolis!
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