By Mark Jurgena
While the Collinsville boys bowling team saw their season end at the sectional tourney held at Camelot Bowl, Ben Sloan was able to qualify for the state finals this weekend as an individual qualifier.
Sloan had a six game series of 1255. He tied Alton’s Sam Ottwell for the final individual qualifying spot.
He fired 258, 210, and 212 in the morning and followed it with 187, 197, and 191 to make the cut for state.
“We’re happy to have representation (at state),” said CHS coach Sean Hay. “Ben’s a great kid to represent our team. I think he’s shown growth over his six years bowling at Collinsville (both at the middle and high school) going from the kid with potential to the kid who can actually play.
“At the end of our season, he’s been one of our rocks. He’s been one of the ones who’s been consistently throwing 220s, 230s.”
Cole Buckman was next for Collinsville with a series of 1233. He had high games of 259 and 257. Brandon Campbell had a six-game set of 1229. His high games were 274, 216, 205, and 202.
Mason Foley fired 220, 217, and 209.
Jacob Taylor rolled 233 for his high game.
Individually, Carterville’s Evan Flath rolled 1446 to win the sectional title over second place finisher Connor Lunning of O’Fallon by 11 pins.
As a team, Collinsville finished ninth out of 12 schools with a pinfall total of 5920 on the day. Harrisburg was the sixth and final qualifier with 6049 pins.
“Going into the last game we were 40 off the cut and we just could not get anything to carry,” said Hay. “We put ourselves in that position in game three. Then we started to make a comeback. We shot three games in the 1070s but we were uncharacteristically missing some spares and some of our first shots weren’t good.
“Obviously the pressure was getting to them but it’s my job to get that squared away. I just fell a little short getting them to relax to be the bowlers they can be.”
Salem added the sectional crown to their regional crown from last weekend.
The Wildcats shot a 6570 to beat O’Fallon’s total of 6547 for the top spot.
Jerseyville, Mascoutah, and Waterloo also qualified out of the Collinsville Sectional.
The boys state tourney begins Friday at St. Clair Bowl in Fairview Heights.