This October, the boys and girls varsity bowling teams both took second place in the Billy Tee’s HHSAA State Bowling Championships on Kauai.
Leading up to the championships, the boys team struggled in ILH league play but finished fifth overall and were still able to qualify for the state tournament. Like last year, the girls team won the ILH title and easily qualified for states.
Bowling an average of 184.44 at this year’s state championships, senior Shelby Suzuki, who finished as the top girls bowler in the same competition last year, placed second. Suzuki said that the season was really a fun one and she appreciates seeing her team bond together. She was also ecstatic have alumna Candace Minami (‘15) on the coaching staff this year as one of the junior varsity girls coaches. “The most fun part of this season was becoming ILH Champs and also our team bonding sessions at Kaitlyn’s house,” Suzuki said. “We’re all amazing dancers and scored really high on Just Dance. I learned that teamwork is actually really important and that you can’t take things for granted. We all bowled really well especially when we were cheering for each other and having a good time.”[one_third]
“I learned that teamwork is actually really important and that you can’t take things for granted.”
Senior Shelby Suzuki[/one_third]
Senior varsity boys bowler Logan Takeda, who has bowled for 11 years, said that he had to overcome many obstacles this season. He was glad that his teammates helped strengthen his weaknesses while he helped strengthen theirs. “The most fun part of the season was when we played our first match of this season,” he said. “The most difficult part of the season was bowling in a match against Saint Louis because I just came back from the England trip three days before the match and I was still jet lagged.” Reflecting on his last season as an HBA bowler, he said, “My biggest takeaway is that I am going to miss bowling for HBA a lot because I love hanging out with my teammates and competing for our school. After Josh [Joo] bowled his last ball, I started crying.”
Senior Shaynie Fukuda, who placed 17th in girls division at states, felt that her team accomplished a lot of their goals during the season and grew closer as a team. “I’m proud that we were able to clinch the ILH title for the Hayashis,” she said, referring to head coaches Greg and Lynne Hayashi. “The most fun parts of the season were the memories made. I particularly enjoyed the time we spent during the parent meetings when both varsity teams just talked and played games with each other. It was also pretty exciting bowling a 900 series as a team during one of our matches, since that rarely ever happens with girls teams.”
Reflecting on the challenges she faced this season, Fukuda said, “The most frustrating part for me this season was not being able to live up to the expectations I set for myself. I set lofty goals for each game and for the season and when I didn’t bowl up to my expectations, it frustrated me.”
Junior Dylan Tsuruda has a few take-aways for the next season. He said, “The most fun part for this season was seeing the results of our work. It’s great to see practice paying off. The beginning of the season was most difficult because it was hard to begin well this year. I learned that I should work harder.”
Girls coach Lynne Hayashi commended her girls for a great season. “This year, the girls didn’t face too much of a challenge in the regular season, but that didn’t mean they could slack off. There were times when the games weren’t in their favor, but the girls kept their composure and didn’t panic,” she said.
During the state tournament, Lynne Hayashi told her nervous team that it was “basically just another tournament.” She also wanted them to keep in mind that they were bowling as a team. “We were aiming for the first place trophy but, unfortunately, came up short,” she said. “But, they came away with the second place trophy and, overall, did splendidly all season long. I am very proud of this group of girls and for the way they conducted themselves during the ILH season and during the state tournament.”
Boys coach Greg Hayashi is similarly proud of how his team performed. “The season was rough. We were struggling in the beginning and we thought we weren’t going to qualify for states, but we had a chance,” he said. The team managed to qualify six players for the state tournament and two of the players—Chris Fujimoto and Dylan Tsuruda—had never bowled at states before.
Pearl City High School’s girls and boys teams beat HBA’s teams to take the championship titles in their respective divisions.
Additional reporting by Matthew Omiya (’16).