Spain Park Bowling Champs
Spain Park wins the bowling state championship on Friday, January 27, 2017.
The Spain Park High School boys bowling team was in a hole, in danger of being denied the final leap in its quest for a repeat as Class 1A-7A state champions.
Then a strike. Then another strike. Then another.
Seven strikes later, the Jags looked up to find themselves with a 63-pin lead over Vestavia Hills with one game remaining, a lead they would hold onto to take home a second consecutive blue map, by defeating the Rebels 1,036-899 in the finals on Friday afternoon at Oak Mountain Lanes.
After an impressive 237 in the first of five games, the Jags held a 32-pin lead over the Rebels, one that was quickly erased in the second game. Vestavia bowled a 186 compared to just 133 for Spain Park, propelling the Rebels into the lead. Spain Park made up some of the gap in the third game, but still trailed by seven pins.
Then, the 258 came in the fourth game, catapulting the Jags ahead for good.
Spain Park earned the second seed following the first day of the state tournament, with the Rebels claiming the top seed. The first day was used to determine seeding, setting up a bracket for the final day of action.
The Jags began the day with a 1,002-755 win over Indian Springs. In the quarterfinals, the Jags pulled away in the final game of a tight match, beating Grissom 889-820. Spain Park eclipsed the 1,000-pin barrier for the second time of the day as the Jags defeated Hewitt-Trussville, 1,022-927, setting up the final against Vestavia Hills.
To advance to the state tournament, Spain Park finished in the top four of the South regional last weekend.
The Lady Jags also advanced to the state tournament, and advanced to the quarterfinals before falling to Thompson in a heartbreaker, 712-711, the second time during the season that the Spain Park girls team lost by a single pin.