Jordan and Zach Herman have taken different approaches to help improve their scores for the Bexley boys bowling team.
The senior twins helped the Lions finish the regular season 7-5 both overall and in the COHSBC-C Division, with Jordan raising his average more than 30 pins from last season using a two-handed delivery. On the other hand, Zach has stayed with the tried-and-true one-handed release and has increased his average more than 10 pins.
"We'll joke around and when I'm not doing so well I'll try it two-handed, but it's just not for me," said Zach, who averaged 138.4 as a sophomore and 153.6 as a junior before improving to 164.3 this season. "It's really all about focus and making sure you go from one ball to the next. You have to forget about what happened last, you just have to look forward. You can't get upset. You have to think about how to improve next time."
Jordan averaged 133.8 as a sophomore and 130.1 last winter before improving his two-handed release and averaging 164.7 this season.
"Zach, (senior teammate) Tyler Roberts and I were joking around a couple years ago about (throwing two-handed)," Jordan said. "I dabbled with it through the end of sophomore year and used it most of last year. This year I have gone all two-handed.
"I have noticed that my ball has been able to spin way faster and I have been able to make more shots than in the past. Also the pressure isn't always on one hand to be perfect. I can always use two hands. My right hand doesn't have to be super strong to hold up a heavier ball."
Peter Roberts, who is co-coach with Brian Talabere, said the two-handed approach seemed to be a good fit for Jordan despite the method being more complicated.
"Most bowlers are still one-handed bowlers, but it has worked out for Jordan," coach Roberts said. "There are a lot more adjustments and a lot more spin on the ball."
When they were all eighth-graders, the twins were convinced by Tyler Roberts that bowling would be a lot of fun. The sport became a passion and they lobbied to get a team, playing in the Lions' inaugural season two years ago.
"In the eighth grade, my friend Tyler asked me if I wanted to join a league at Holiday (Lanes)," Zach said. "We had fun and after our freshman year, we started talking to the parents and with the school to get the team (when we were sophomores). I guess I joined the team just to have fun."
"Tyler got us playing (in) the Jim Shaw (Youth) League here at Holiday and it all took off from there," Jordan added. "We're the twins who knock down pins."
Coach Roberts said the improvement has come from more experience on the lanes.
"They have put in the practice and made a lot of adjustments," he said.
"They worked a lot harder than they used to. When they started it was like a fun activity for them, but now I think they look at it as if it's a real sport."
The Lions competed in the MSL-Ohio tournament Feb. 1 at Wayne Webb's Columbus Bowl. The boys were fifth (2,895) in the six-team event as the top four advanced to the roll-off, during which Worthington Christian defeated Buckeye Valley 3-2 in the best-of-five Baker game championship match.
Tyler Roberts earned league Player of the Year honors with a 597 three-game series. He leads Bexley with a 175.8 average.
Zach Herman (497) and Max Kozelek (393) were honorable mention all-league. Jordan Herman rolled a 391.
The girls team entered the league tournament 2-10 overall and 2-9 in the COHSBC-C. The Lions finished sixth (1,478), and Buckeye Valley defeated Whitehall 3-0 in the final. Maggie Hayes (401) was second-team all-league.
Girls team heating up at the right time
The girls basketball team had won six of seven games and six consecutive MSL-Ohio contests before playing Whitehall on Feb. 4.
The Lions improved to 10-9 overall and 9-3 in the league by defeating Columbus School for Girls 53-24 on Feb. 1. Maddy Young scored 23 points with seven 3-pointers and Regan Comstock added eight points.
Bexley also defeated Columbus Academy 44-32 on Jan. 14, Worthington Christian 43-31 on Jan. 18, Academy 45-37 on Jan. 21, Buckeye Valley 45-38 on Jan. 24 and Grandview 41-32 on Jan. 28 to account for the other five league wins.
The only loss in that stretch for the Lions was a 39-27 setback against Logan on Jan. 25. Grace Heilman led with nine points.
Bexley is seeded 11th for the Division II district tournament and plays a first-round game Feb. 17 at 10th-seeded Sparta Highland.
Boys basketball team rallies for fourth win
Trailing by four points with 22 seconds remaining Jan. 28, the boys basketball team rallied for a 48-47 victory over visiting Hamilton Township.
The Lions were 4-14 overall and 0-9 in the MSL-Ohio before playing Buckeye Valley on Feb. 4.
Bryan Williams scored on a putback with 10 seconds remaining to give Bexley a one-point lead, and the Rangers missed a 3-point attempt at the buzzer.
Damian Davis scored 25 points with four 3-pointers and made all five of his free throws to lead the Lions. Williams finished with nine points.
Bexley lost to Worthington Christian 61-41 on Jan. 31 in league play. Davis scored 24 points with four 3s and Williams added 11 points.
Below are the coming schedules for the Bexley boys basketball, girls basketball, swimming & diving and wrestling teams:
*Feb. 8 -- Home vs. Grandview. The Lions lost to the Bobcats 54-33 on Jan. 7.
Feb. 11 -- Home vs. Independence
*Feb. 7 -- At Wellington. The Lions defeated the Jaguars 70-17 on Jan. 4.
SWIMMING & DIVING
Feb. 8 -- Division II sectional at Columbus Academy. The winner of each event and 27 at-large qualifiers in each event based on times from the Central, East and Southeast sectional sites advance to district Feb. 12 at Ohio State. There is no diving at sectional.
Feb. 8 -- Eighth-seeded Logan Elm in Division II, Region 14 team dual tournament at Washington Court House Miami Trace. Winner takes on top-seeded Miami Trace in quarterfinal. Semifinals and final will be later that day. Regional champion will advance to state Feb. 16 at Ohio State. The Lions are seeded ninth.