Penn-Trafford bowlers eager for regional tournament

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Friday, February 28, 2020 | 11:24 PM


Penn-Trafford didn’t participate in the WPIBL team tournament, but the Warriors were well-represented at the individual tournament, which was Feb. 19-20.

The Warriors sent five girls and three boys to the WPIBL individual tournament, and four girls and two boys qualified for the Western Regional tournament March 6 at North Versailles Bowl.

Seventy-four WPIBL bowlers qualified for regionals: the top-40 finishers in WPIBL qualifying, five others who finished with top-two averages in their section in the regular season and 28 more who had qualifying seasonlong averages.

“I was very pleased that two of three boys that were entered into the qualifier moved onto regionals and that four of the five girls qualified for regionals,” coach Brett Lago said. “We’re quite happy we had that much of a success rate. They are all underclassmen, so we’re looking forward to them coming back next year.”

Junior Zachary Sudo headlined Penn-Trafford’s qualifiers as he finished tied for 24th with a three-game total of 562. After bowling a 149 in the second game, Sudo regrouped and finished with a 234 in the final game.

Junior Nathan Horton finished 56th with a 511 series and qualified with one of the top season averages (190.73).

Senior Jason Sathornkich bowled a 434 series but did not qualify for the regional tournament.

On the girls side, junior Taylor Sathornkich finished 41st with a 468 series.

Sathornkich advanced after averaging a 173.22 for the season.

She will make her second appearance in the regional tournament after finishing 18th last season with a five-game total of 922.

“Now that she has that experience under her belt, it won’t be overwhelming for her like those tournaments can be for somebody for their first time,” Lago said. “I think she’s prepared to handle the pressure, and I expect her to do very well.”

Sophomores Mikayla Uranker and Emily Veychek and freshman Alyssa Balest advanced to the regional tournament because of their season averages.

At WPIBLs, Balest and Uranker each bowled a 456 series.

Veychek bowled a 423 series, finishing just behind her sister, Abigail, whose 426 series did not qualify for the regional tournament.

“The three girls don’t have anything to lose. They are capable of bowling big games. I hope it happens,” Lago said.

Penn-Trafford finished third in the Southeast section with a 6-4 record after winning the Western Regional team tournament last season. The boys finished fourth in the Southeast with a 5-5 record.

Lago said he is excited to see how Sudo and Horton respond to bowling in the regional tournament, and he expects Taylor Sathornkich to bounce back from her performance at WPIBLs. Lago believes it will come down to executing their spares.

“Being able to adapt to the lane conditions, there will be a pattern they haven’t seen all season,” Lago said. “If they can quickly figure out what that pattern does and how to attack it, they will bowl very well.

“Making spares is key. If they make their spares, good things will happen. If they don’t do well spare shooting, then the outlook is going to be that great.”

The top 12 individuals from the regional tournaments will qualify for the state championships March 13.

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