This week we take a look at the Columbus Youth Bowling Club.
Last season, our youth bowlers competed in the Nebraska High School Bowling Association (NHSBA). It is divided into two divisions, High School and Middle School.
The High School division is for youths in grades 9-12 while the Middle School division is for youths in grades 4-8. Since the end of last season, the Nebraska School Activities Association approved Bowling as a sanctioned high school sport. Westbrook owner John Eckholt has spoken with Columbus High Athletic Director Tim Kwapnioski about the possibility of adding bowling to the department.
Our local high school bowlers will have a couple of options this season. If Columbus High or other high schools choose not to offer bowling as a winter sport, the bowlers will still be able to compete in the Nebraska High School Bowling Coaches Association.
That seems like the option since Kwapnioski indicated when the vote was made that CHS will likely wait a year to determine interest and decide on a way forward.
The NHSBCA offers a spring season to bowlers. The one thing that is certain, our local middle school bowlers will have a season. The Nebraska Middle School Bowling Association will hold a fall season for all youths, 4th through 8th grade.
The Nebraska Middle School Bowling Association will bowl eight weekends. Last Sunday was the first tournament of the season, as they competed at Maplewood Lanes in Omaha.
The team will bowl the next four weekends away from home, starting at Western Bowl in Omaha this weekend then followed by a trip to Lincoln and Sun Valley Lanes. The schedule includes Pastime Lanes in Hastings before finishing up in Norfolk at Kings Lanes.
October 18 is the lone home tournament at Westbrook Lanes. The regular season comes to a close at Strikes & Spare Bowl in Lexington. The State Tournament will be held at Mockingbird Lanes in Omaha on Nov. 8.
Both Columbus Middle School coaches return from last season: Bob Jaster and Shayla Long.
The Columbus Middle School team has nine members this season: Zane Wemhoff, Alex Unger, Gavin Unger, Jacob Staub, Daniel Borgman, Roman Long, Maggie McFarland, Amelia McFarland and Owen Lawrence.
Since there wasn’t enough girls to form a team, they are allowed to bowl with the boys. Jaster will coach the Columbus Maroon Team; Long will coach the Columbus White Team. Jaster said the teams will be determined by average. The top five average bowlers will bowl with the Maroon Team, while the other four bowlers will form the White Team. Jaster said that the fifth spot has been highly contested.
Jaster also coaches the Nebraska Youth Bowling Partnership U15 team. That group competes in several tournaments throughout the season. Ryland Prokopec, Andrew Gassmann and Colin Jaster are regulars. The last two spots on the team will rotate among the members of the middle school Bowlers.