After taking WPIBL girls team title, Penn-Trafford bowlers head to regionals

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Sunday, March 6, 2022 | 11:01 AM


The Penn-Trafford bowling team’s special season continues after the girls won the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Bowling League title by defeating Burrell, 2-0.

Now the team and four individuals advance to the regionals March 12 at North Versailles.

Penn-Trafford coach Brett Lago said he expects the girls to do well and advance to the state championship March 18 at Lancaster.

When the team defeated Burrell in the finals, Lago said one of the keys was the performance of junior Maddie Novicki, who he said bowled her best event of the season.

The Warriors’ top bowlers, all of whom qualified for the regional singles event, are junior Alyssa Balest and seniors Makayla Uranker and the Veychek twins, Abby and Emmy.

“All four have a chance to qualify for the state singles tournament,” Lago said. “They really came together as a team. They certainly have a chance to qualify for the state tournament and win it.”

The girls were section champions and won the Westmoreland County Coaches’ Association championship this year.

In the individual championship, Balest rolled a 577 series, Emmy Veychek a 563, Uranker a 520 and Abby Veychek a 497.

“I’m very excited about the possibilities and going back to states,” Lago said. “The seniors were on the last team to make it to states. They know what it takes and what to expect.”

Lago said the girls didn’t quite bowl to their expectations in the WPIBL singles tournament but know they get a second chance at regionals.

Penn-Trafford also has two boys headed to regionals.

Junior Trent McCoy and senior Tyler Taormina will be trying to qualify for states.

“I would say Trent has the best chance at advancing if he bowls to his potential,” Lago said. “Tyler, you never know. He’s been up and down. I’m excited for all of them. It’s an exciting time of the season.”

Lago said what makes the girls good is how well the top four compete. Novicki’s recent performances enhance the team’s chances.

Balest rolled a 660 series in the team finals. She was followed by Emmy Veychek with a 550, Abby Veychek with a 540, Uranker with a 496 and Novicki with a 354. The team finished with a 2,605.

McCoy rolled a 559 and Taormina a 392.

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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