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Quaker Valley boys bowlers off to impressive start in WPIBL

| Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

A deep, experienced Quaker Valley boys bowling team is off to a strong start.

The Quakers were 3-0 in Section 7 of the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Bowling League entering this week.

Six rollers have been vying for five playing spots, coach Greg Vecchi said.

“(The) guys are always pushing each other and trying to improve,” Vecchi said.

Senior Zach Mancuso leads the section with a 219.33 average in six games.

Senior Matt Trapp has a mark of 176, including a high game of 258, in nine games.

Seniors Derek Hiller (170.78) and Cris Trapp (156.78) have been pleasant surprises rolling nine games apiece, Vecchi said.

“Cris didn't bowl last year and Derek has improved greatly since being on the JV squad,” Vecchi said.

Junior Dan Charko (158.22 in nine games) also has competed.

Hiller said there is room for the Quakers to improve.

“We have to be more consistent and keep our head in the game,” said Hiller, noting he and his teammates struggled in a 7-0 win over Avonworth last week.

Consistency has been key for an improved Quaker Valley girls team (1-2 in Section 7).

Senior Rachel Dye (124.67 average in nine games) leads a solid group of starters that includes seniors Mary Frank and Lindsey Hogan and juniors Amanda Bemis and Emily Dietrich.

“There is not a big drop-off in talent from one girl to the other like there has been in years past,” said Vecchi, who also coaches the girls squad.

Sewickley Academy

Winless so far, the Sewickley Academy boys team is encouraged that matches have become close under second-year coach Antonio Palangio.

“We're within 100 to 50 pins of winning,” said junior Max Hammel, who is averaging 117.20 in five games.

Pieter Hansen (136.78) and Rahul Pokharna (123.44) have rolled a team-high nine games.

Connor Ward (115.60 in five games), Anthony Frischling (101.71 in seven games) and Max Gillespie (107.67 in three games) also have bowled.

Thomas Michael and Aryton Mutagaana are on the team, as well.

Senior Sarah Duplaga (133.50 in six games) leads the girls team, which has won one match in Section 4.

Elizabeth Wilson is averaging 109.33 in six games in her first year on the team.

Senior Amy Cheng — a standout on the Sewickley Academy girls tennis team that was WPIAL Class AA runner-up in the fall — has a 100 average in three games.

“People who know me from tennis are surprised I'm bowling,” said Cheng, who finds bowling relaxing.

Avery Lesesne (97.33) and Margaret Wilson (94) have competed in six games each.

Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.

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