By Mark Jurgena
Ben Sloan represented Collinsville High School well at the IHSA boys bowling state finals at St. Clair Bowl in Fairview Heights last weekend. He was the only Kahok to qualify this year and finished in 40th place overall.
Charlie Hunter of Salem won the individual title rolling past the field with a 230.3 average over six games during the second day of competition on Saturday.
He outdistanced TJ Czabaj of Lake Zurich whose average was 223.6
Sloan was in 25th place after the opening day on Friday and found his way to 6th place after nine games thanks to a fantastic Saturday morning.
“Ben was fantastic!” said CHS coach Sean Hay. “I thought he just did an excellent job of keeping his head about him and even when things were tough his attitude was fantastic and when things were going good his attitude was fantastic.
“I was super proud to be there with him for that moment and I know he didn’t leave anything out there. He definitely represented our school in a great way. I couldn’t be more proud of him.”
On day one two of his games were above 200 including 265 for his opening game. He rolled a 689 set in the morning and a 586 in the afternoon with a high game of 217.
On day two, Sloan had a 725 set with scores of 227, 264, and 234. However, the shot on the lanes deteriorated and he threw a 487 to finish the day.
Southern Illinois had a big weekend at state as the top three finishers were from the Collinsville Sectional tournament.
Salem took the team title with a pinfall total of 12,706 good for a 211.8 average. O’Fallon was 189 pins behind for second place and Mascoutah finished third 197 points behind.
Chicago powers Machesney Park (Harlem) and New Lenox (Lincoln Way-West) each had a 206.8 average while Rockton (Hononegah) who set a national record for a series earlier this season took sixth place.
Salem has an enrollment of 724 students this year while Mascoutah has 1,086. They were the two smallest teams enrollment wise at the state finals.
The day following the state tournament an open tournament is held for high school bowlers. Cole Buckman and Mason Foley both won scholarship money for their performance on Sunday with Buckman rolling a 300-game.