July 24, 2024

Newton girls finish second in conference bowling tournament

Keith headlines the individual round with a runner-up finish

Libbie Keith

Libbie Keith is a three-time state qualifier. But her final prep season hasn’t gone quite as well as she had hoped.

Maybe a career-best score for a single game can help the Cardinal senior turn things around.

Keith looked like a state qualifier on Friday, and she led the Newton girls’ bowling team with a runner-up finish at the Twin Rivers Conference tournament.

The Cardinals also finished second in the team standings one season after losing half of last year’s conference-championship varsity roster.

“I feel like a broken record, but these bowlers are amazing kids,” Newton head bowling coach Christie Hughes said. “They have worked so hard to get where they are.”

Newton girls bowling team

The defending conference champs finished 78 pins behind Ballard, which won the team title with 2,350 pins. Newton was second with 2,272 and Gilbert was closely behind in third with 2,208.

Oskaloosa (2,196) and Pella (2,177) completed the top five and Sigourney-Keota (2,170), Norwalk (2,079), Knoxville (1,934), Bondurant-Farrar (1,925) and Pella Christian (1,569) rounded out the 10-team field.

The Cardinals, whose best Baker games were 189, 180, 167 and 164, have finished no worse than second in at least each of the past six seasons.

“Consistent scores are more impressive than the really high scores followed by the low ones,” Hughes said. “They did a wonderful job representing our school. I’m super proud of them and we’re ready to head into the state qualifying meet this week with a purpose.”

Keith, Genessa Slings, Gabbie Humphrey and Maria Baxin bowled in all 15 Baker games. The fifth and final bowler was split between Marissa Burns and Aeris Archer.

Keith trailed Oskaloosa’s Sidney Thompson by nine pins after the opening game of the individual round.

Keith’s career-best 237 set the tone for her day and she finished with single games of 172 and 177 for a 586 series.

Genessa Slings

Thompson won the conference title with a 627 series. She rolled single games of 236, 190 and 191. Her teammate, Ava Ridenour, finished third with a 580.

Slings also finished in the top 10 for Newton as she was eighth with a 520 series. She had individual games of 190, 178 and 152.

Humphrey was next for the Cardinals. She posted a 454 series after single games of 190, 126 and 138.

Burns had a 433 series. Her day started with a career-best 140 and ended with a career-best 174. She rolled a 115 in between.

Baxin (373) and Archer (339) rounded out Newton’s varsity lineup, which was still without the injured Kelly Holmes. Baxin’s single games were 116, 144 and 113 and Archer turned in single games of 111, 117 and 111.

Humphrey and Slings were first-team all-conference bowlers this season, while Keith earned second-team recognition.

Gabbie Humphrey