Columbus Academy Roundup: Boys bowlers expect to have strong season
Despite the obstacles presented by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, Columbus Academy bowling coach Gerardina Garita has seen glimpses of promise within her program.
One of those bright spots is a solid turnout for the boys team, which includes the return of the program’s lone district qualifier from a season ago.
Senior Vincent White was 31st of 78 competitors with a 487 series in his first Division II district tournament appearance.
He finished with a team-best 152.5 average in COHBC play and earned honorable mention all-MSL-Ohio Division honors.
Also back is junior Ryan Reagan, who had a 138 average, along with seniors Cole Leis, Skyler Simpson and Gabe Taub, junior Benjamin Anasis and sophomore Jacob Mowery.
Rounding out the roster are senior Jacob Podgurski, juniors Quinn Hulme, Kian Jennings, Soham Joshi and Akshay Ramkumar and freshmen Lance Hulme, Joshua King, Robbie Lucas and Henry Wood.
“The boys team is pretty strong this year,” said Garita, whose squad finished 21st at last season’s sectional as the top 12 teams advanced to the district. “We have some returning bowlers who have been preparing for the season and plan to have a good one. We have enough players for a j.v. team, which is great, too. All in all, we’re making it work as best as we can.”
Garita said the girls team has been more affected by the pandemic.
“I bet we’re not the only team that has struggled with the pandemic and its effects,” said Garita, who is in her second season. “In our case, the girls team was severely affected because we started with nine girls and ended up with four. Many quit because of COVID and later because of the sudden increase of cases.
“As always, we’re trying to stay positive, even though three cancellations have already happened. We go day by day and hope for the best.”
Back are seniors Evelyn Olexio and Madeline Rosenberg and junior Tara Hoffman, with freshman Addy Butler rounding out the team.
Garita said the addition of John Compton as an assistant coach has been beneficial in the bowlers’ development.
“Coach Compton has stepped up to help because it was hard to find help in that area because of the pandemic,” she said.
•Coach: Gerardina Garita, second season
•Top athletes: Boys — Ryan Reagan and Vincent White; Girls ― Tara Hoffman and Evelyn Olexio
•Key losses: Boys — Michael Hoffman and Donovan Simpson; Girls ― Gianna Bates, Eleanor Jeffers and Nikki Turley
•Last season: Boys — 6-7 overall; Girls — 5-7 overall
•2019-20 finishes: Boys ― Eighth in COHSBC-C, sixth in MSL-Ohio pool play, 21st at sectional; Girls — Seventh in COHSBC-C, fifth in MSL-Ohio pool play, did not compete in postseason