2014-15 Girls Bowling Team
By Rusty Silber | Daily Herald Correspondent
Antioch's Alyssa Alvarez was caught by surprise.
She didn't know she'd won the top medal in the North Suburban Conference girls bowling meet until it was announced on Friday at Lakeside Lanes in Mundelein.
Alvarez was in shock at first, but eventually made her way to pick up her medal.
Alvarez rolled 210 and 218 over her last two games for a 1,144 series. That pushed her past teammate Kaitlyn Truski and Warren's Dani Thul, who tied for second place at 1,142.
"I was like, 'wow.' I didn't realized I won," said Alvarez, a sophomore. "I knew it would be close and I'd be in the top five. I had to adjust my shot and my coach (Laura Bertermann) helped me a lot. It just all came together for me."
Vernon Hills got off to a good start and then got some beneficial coaching from Andra Hjelm, which led to the Cougars' second North Suburban Conference championship.
The Cougars earned the top spot with down 5,219 pins. Antioch finished second at 5,163, Warren took third at 5,067 and Grant was fourth at 5,067.
"Our coach was motivating us," said Samatha Madsen, a Vernon Hills senior who rolled a 1,051 over the 6 games and opened with a high game of 220. "She was telling us how much we were up, and it helped us all day."
Vernon Hills took over the lead by the second game with a 957 and held the lead the rest of the way by staying consistent.
"We knew coming in the race was wide open," Hjelm said. "Ever since we came back from the winter break, the girls have been clicking together. They've been picking up the spares that they need to and been consistent with their scores."
Wendy Inman led Vernon Hills by placing fourth individually 1,123. She was followed by Alyssa Doughtery (1,046), Danielle McGovern (982) and Nicole Sanhamel (977).
"The lane conditions changed so much that they were inconsistent," said Inman, a senior. "I kept moving and listened to my coach."
Antioch ended the day 56 pins behind Vernon Hills.
"I thought we bowled well as a team," Bertermann said. "We had somebody struggle each game, but someone else was there to pick them up. That's what a team is all about -- relying on each other."
All the North Suburban teams will meet again next Saturday for the Lake Zurich sectional at Deer Park Lanes in Deer Park.