Junior Lauren Stephens was surprised and discouraged when she was the only athlete who showed up to the Dublin Coffman High School girls club bowling team's first few practices.

Junior Lauren Stephens was surprised and discouraged when she was the only athlete who showed up to the Dublin Coffman High School girls club bowling team's first few practices.

So, Stephens began recruiting friends who weren't playing other winter sports to join the squad. Then, just two days before the Shamrocks were scheduled to open their season against Hilliard Darby on Dec. 9, they had enough bowlers to post a full team score.

Rounding out Coffman's lineup are juniors Lauren Bond, Maddie Gravois, Rebecca Kirchner and Tiffany Ruz.

The Shamrocks boys and girls squads compete Jan. 5 at Sawmill Lanes against Centennial.

"The rest of last year's team were all seniors, so I had to go out and rope some of my friends into helping us put a team together," Stephens said. "I used to swim in the winter, but I had mono last year and couldn't swim, and that's how I got started on the team."

The Shamrocks beat Watterson 1,184-1,117 on Dec. 14 for their first win of the season, as Kirchner (226) was medalist, before losing to Watterson 1,451-1,134 on Dec. 17 to drop to 1-2.

"We didn't do too well at first, because most of us had bowled just for fun before this, but we're excited about beating Watterson," Stephens said.

The Shamrocks are competing in the Central Ohio High School Bowling Conference-Gold Division, along with Beechcroft, Brookhaven, Centennial, East, Independence, Linden-McKinley, Mifflin, Northland and Walnut Ridge.

Coffman went 3-12 in the Central Ohio High School Bowling Conference-North Division last season.

As a club program, Coffman's boys and girls teams are not allowed to compete in the postseason.

"All of these girls have been involved in other sports, so they've already got that competitive frame of mind," assistant coach Greg Snyder said. "I think we can be competitive with the teams in our conference. Our main objectives are to have fun and become better bowlers so we can be more competitive with the better teams by the end of the season."

•Competing for the boys team are seniors Brian Forman, Greg Hoseus, Josh Nelson, Jake Preston and Jon Puckett, sophomore Max Wagner and freshman Kevin White.

"Five of our kids are first-year bowlers, so we're just trying to be as competitive as we can with the experience we have," coach Jeff Nelson said. "My son, Josh, is our No. 1 bowler. Brian and Greg are good bowlers, too, so we've got three kids putting up good scores right now."

The Shamrocks defeated Watterson 1,816-1,103 on Dec. 14 for their first win of the season, Forman (376) was medalist, before losing to Watterson 1,647-1,641 on Dec. 17 to drop to 1-2.

"We were missing Josh (on Dec. 17) because he's in New York on vacation, or we would have done better against Watterson," Forman said. "Right now, we're just trying to have fun, learn about bowling and win as much as possible."

Coffman went 3-12 in the COHSBC-North Division last season, but coach Nelson is optimistic his squad will be more competitive once it begins to compete against COHSBC-Gold opponents in January.

"The teams that are in our division are closer to our experience level, so our goal is to win that division," coach Nelson said.