The 2017-2018 HBA girls bowling teams have begun training in the hopes of a successful season and qualifying for the bowling state championships this fall.

Starting the very first day of school, bowling tryouts commenced for the junior varsity and varsity teams. However, practices began as early as June this year. In fact, every year HBA holds a three-day summer bowling clinic usually during the first or second week of June. Run by high school PE teacher and bowling head coach Greg Hayashi, and coach Rodney Shimabukuro, this short clinic allows those interested in the sport to learn bowling basics before the school year begins. Those who chose to participate in the clinic had the opportunity to practice with veteran bowlers and get a head start before the season began. Junior Kylie Chong, a third year HBA bowler who helped with the summer clinic said, “Going to the clinic is a good way for new bowlers to meet and get to know each other.”

Now that the school year has begun, junior Tess Wakabayashi, a veteran of the girls varsity team, says that one goal she has this year is to “get to states as a team.” In previous years, HBA bowling teams have had multiple victories in both ILH and state competitions. The girls team has 16 ILH titles and one state championship title, while the boys varsity team boasts 11 ILH titles and five state championship titles.

According to varsity girls coach Lynne Hayashi, this year’s team will have to deal with the challenge of having just two returning varsity players. She explained, “To make it to the state tournament as a team is a priority. But I actually only have two returning bowlers that have several years of experience. So the varsity is relatively new because most of them are junior varsity players that have been moved up to varsity.” And in order to better ready themselves, the players have set team and personal goals. Four year varsity veteran, senior Kaitlyn Matsushima, said, “I would like for the team to become close and hopefully everyone on the team does really well.”

I love being able to make bonds and strong relationships with all of my teammates who come from all different grade levels.

And while performing well is important, many players expressed how just being a part of a team is a reward in itself. Junior Reanne Inafuku, who has been bowling since her sophomore year said, “I expect to improve my bowling while also having fun and bonding with my team.” Fellow junior Kristin Lau added, “I love being able to make bonds and strong relationships with all of my teammates who come from all different grade levels.”

As for what coach Lynne Hayashi wants for her players, she said, “I think this year is going to be an interesting one. And hopefully by the end of the year, you can say, ‘I did my best and I am pleased with what I did.’ ”

Practices for the boys and girls bowling teams are be held at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Bowling Center. Boys matches begin on Monday, August 28, while girls matches will begin Friday, September 1.