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Foresters qualify for tourney play at Trailblazer Classic

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TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - The Huntington University bowling teams spent this past weekend competing in the Trailblazer Classic in Terre Haute, Ind. The tournament format had a long day of qualifying on Saturday where teams bowled four regular team games and 16 baker games followed up with a single elimination format on Sunday.

When all the dust settled, the Foresters ended the weekend with a runner-up finish in the women’s varsity division and the men’s JV division and a semi-finals finish for the HU men’s varsity team.

“This was one of the better tournament formats we’ve bowled this year,” said Coach Mike Shockey. “We were tested physically on Saturday because all totaled we spent about nine hours bowling, but then Sunday was a mental test because of single elimination format.  

“I am happy with the weekend as a whole we are showing big strides in being ready for the Hoosier Classic in a couple weeks and then the post-season tournaments after that.”

The Huntington women qualified for Sunday’s match play as the 3rd seed with a grand total of 5,629 pins after the Saturday qualifying round. HU opened up the tourney by beating Ball State University which sent them directly to the championship match where they faced Indiana State University.

The championship was a close match and went to a deciding fifth game. Brooke Ewing did a great job picking up a spare and good count in the 10th frame to force the Indiana State player to get two strikes in the 10th for the win. Ewing bowled well all weekend to finish with a 183 average for the 4th highest average in the women’s field and a spot on the all-tournament team.  

The HU junior varsity men’s team qualified as the 3rd seed as well with a grand total of 6,234 on Saturday. After upending Indiana State and Lindenwood’s top JV team, the Foresters earned their way into the championship match against a tough Vincennes University squad.

The match extended to five games and despite a quick start by Vincennes, Huntington never backed down and matched their intensity shot for shot. It came down to the final 9th and 10th frames with the Foresters coming up just short of claiming their first JV tournament title.  Justin Coleman paced Coach Shockey’s JV squad with a qualifying average of 192 on Saturday good for 10th place overall.

The HU varsity men’s team continued the trend through Saturday’s qualifying by finishing as the 3rd seed with a grand pin total of 6,751. They opened up Sunday by beating the University of Illinois to move on the semi-finals against Vincennes University.

In one of the more intense matches of the day, neither team was going to let the other win without earning it. The Foresters ended up on the short end of the match losing in the 4th game but the match was much closer than the final result. HU landed two players on the all-tournament team. Freshman Thomas Gunter finished in 3rd place with a 205 average and senior Derek Beckler in 5th place with a 200 average.

The Huntington University Foresters compete in 17 intercollegiate sports for men and women. In the past decade, Huntington has produced 38 NAIA All-America honors and 254 All-America Scholar Athlete honors. Huntington University is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S. News & World Report ranks Huntington among the best colleges in the Midwest.