The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

Have You Ever Spared Bowling a Thought?

With not nearly enough prodigy bowlers in Oregon, teens gather from high schools around Bend to roll together.


Laney’s weak throw had the 13-pound bowling ball thunking to the ground so hard, we both cringed at its impact. The marble ball rolled along the hardwood floor about four feet before joining her three previous rolls in the gutter. Turning around in her red and black shoes, which seemed as though they’d had to withstand bowlers worse than Laney, she threw her hands up in the air, exasperated, and promptly gave up.

While amid such a humorous game, one of our friends brought up the fact that if Laney wanted to unlock her inner bowling power, she should join the school team. Wait a minute. A school bowling team? 

Summit is known for its athleticism, and even though some of the less common sports have made headlines, less conspicuous ones tremble with vigor beneath the shadows of mainstream recognition. Bowling, while not a very common sport in Summit alone, is a popular hobby of many teens around Bend. Consisting of a girls team and a boys team, bowling gathers together students from schools all around Bend for snacks, fun and ball-rolling glory. 

The team’s journey to the state competition unfolded in relative obscurity, which may be due to the nature of bowling—which requires practicing in shadowed lanes far from the reach of school spirit—and the small number of bowlers on each team. However, all athletes deserve recognition for their time and hard work, and highlighting uncommon sports may give someone the confidence to enroll in an athletic extracurricular they never thought they could. 

State competitions, which took place at Firebird Lanes in Salem, Ore., were held from Feb. 23-25. Although neither the boys nor girls team took home the gold, it was an experience that allowed players to demonstrate the culmination of their hard work. 

Summit junior Evan Gordon is the only Summit student on the bowling team and enjoys the multi-school aspect and tight-knit community that accompanies the practices. 

“Caldera, Mountain View, Bend High; all the high schools [bowl together],” Gordon said. While it consists of students from multiple schools, the team has grown close with each other after so many games. The diverse range of high school experience creates a unique bond between teammates and helps coaches create a friendly and supportive environment. 

“I’m not getting yelled at or anything by the coaches; they’re just super supportive about everything,” said Ridgeview junior Kason Lee Soon. “I feel the same way [about my teammates] because I’m surrounded by them the whole day.” 

The team, which spends two days a week rolling balls down at Lava Lanes, all work hard to be able to grow; both closer together and into better bowlers. 

“[Bowling is] a lot more competitive than people think,” said Ridgeview sophomore Teegan Lindsey, who joined the sport last year. “Bowling takes a lot more skill than [baseball and football], you’ve got to be a pretty physical athlete to play those sports, whereas bowling is more of a mental skill.”

“Some people see bowling as a child’s game almost, but I see it as a very competitive way to show off my physicality,” Teegan said. The game, which is often underrated and underappreciated in the athletic field, tends to be more expensive than various other sports. While in those you might have to buy a pair of cleats or a ball to practice with, bowling spends hundreds of dollars on bowling balls, hotels and gas. That’s right: this sport isn’t school funded. 

“I have eight or nine bowling balls and they’re all like $250 or $100,” said Lee Soon. Owning his own bowling balls allows him to cut down on maintenance and enables the precision necessary for repeated, impactful shots. ‘House balls,’ the ones found for public use at alleys, are made of materials such as rubber or plastic and therefore harder to use. The amount of bowling balls he owns has grown over the games he’s played, along with his skill.

Bowling showcases a different kind of athleticism. One that requires precision and strategy over sheer physicality. So for Laney, and anyone else yearning for a striking adventure, joining the school bowling team might just be the perfect lane change. It’s not just about rolling a ball; it’s about rolling with a team, eating good food and trying something new. The bowling alley awaits and with the right spin, you could find yourself in the sweet spot of triumph. Time to spare? Time to bowl. Remember, don’t strike out uncommon sports.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Laney McDonald
Laney McDonald, Staff Writer

When not digging unfinished projects out of the trash and looking around corners to recruit a wild percussionist, Sophomore staff writer Laney McDonald will be found covered in paint with a pencil tucked behind her ear. Funding her obsession of limited-edition records, the innate desire to fill her shelves with books she’ll never read, and her aspirations to own as many instruments as possible has drained any hope to acquire a college fund. For those sympathetic to her constant need of cash, any donations should be hand delivered as soon as possible. 

Scarlett Tucker
Scarlett Tucker, Staff Writer

When staff writer Scarlett Tucker isn’t doing ballet, she can often be found reading a new book, drawing to her heart’s content, and procrastinating on any and all work. With nearly no free time to spare, you can find her up and moving all time, even late into the night. A steadfast Swiftie, she often spends hours (that she doesn’t have time to spend) clowning around with other Swifties and listening to Taylor Swift, mainly her alternative album Folklore. She’s extremely excited to learn how to enhance the few writing skills she has, and work with a team of people who also enjoy writing.

Comments (0)

All The Summit Pinnacle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *