Brother Martin, Ponchatoula claim top seeds in state bowling playoffs

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State Championship Brackets

Boys | Girls

Defending state bowling champions Brother Martin and Archbishop Chapelle have some differences and possibly one big similarity in their playoff path revealed Monday by the Louisiana High School Athletic Association.

The Crusaders (12-0), seeking an unprecedented sixth title, are the No. 1 seed in the boys bracket and will face Acadiana (6-4) in the opening round March 22 at AMF All Star Lanes in Kenner and could face rival Jesuit in the quarterfinals later that day.

The Chipmunks (8-4) are the No. 14 seed in the girls bracket and have a rematch with New Orleans region rival Academy of Our Lady (11-0) in the opening round March 23 at Premier Lanes in Lafayette.

Three days of early-round action begin next Monday at Holiday Lanes in Bossier City with the lower half of the boys bracket, followed the next day by the upper half of the boys bracket at AMF.

En route to earning the top seed, Brother Martin knocked off three teams also in the top 10 – Archbishop Shaw (No. 6), Dutchtown (No. 8) and Jesuit (No. 9).

The Eagles (11-1) will head to Bossier City to face Haughton in the first round, and would likely have to get through undefeated and third-seeded Denham Springs to reach the semifinals.

Jesuit (10-2) stays home and opens with another New Orleans region team in No. 24 seed Patrick Taylor (8-4). If the Blue Jays win, they would likely have to face Dutchtown in the second round, and that winner could meet Brother Martin in the quarterfinals.

Brother Martin (1,212), Dutchtown (1,164) and Jesuit (1,128), despite all landing in the same quarter of the bracket, have the three highest team averages in the state. Power ratings are based solely on wins, losses and strength of schedule, not pinfall.

The other New Orleans-area team to reach the playoffs is No. 15 seed Archbishop Rummel (9-3), which heads to Bossier City to meet South Terrebonne (8-2) in perhaps the best opening-round match of the bracket. A Raider win in the opening round would likely mean a second-round matchup with second-seeded Catholic High (11-1) – the only other team in the state with a team average above 1,100.

The other top seeds include No. 4 Lafayette (12-0), No. 5 Hammond (11-1) and No. 7 Central Lafourche (10-0).

In the girls bracket, New Orleans district champion Academy of Our Lady – the 2018 and 2019 state champion – swept a pair of matches from Chapelle in the regular season, but no doubt remembers an opposite script from its second state title run three years ago this month, when it defeated a No. 1-seeded Chipmunks team in the quarterfinals that had won a pair of regular-season matchups against the Penguins.

AOL is seeded third in the girls bracket, just behind the two other unbeatens in the state, top-seeded Ponchatoula (12-0) and the team with the state’s highest average, Dutchtown (12-0). The Griffins’ 988 team average is 66 pins higher than the next closest team, No. 6 seed Denham Springs (11-1).

H.L. Bourgeois (11-1) edged out South Central region rival Central Lafourche for the No. 4 seed. St. Scholastica (10-2), which was second in the Hammond region behind Ponchatoula, is seeded seventh.

The survivors from early-round play advance to the Ochsner LHSAA State Bowling Championships March 31 at All Star Lanes in Baton Rouge. The semifinal matches are at 11 a.m., with the championship matches later that afternoon.

Qualifiers for the state singles championship April 1 at All Star will be announced Tuesday.

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Lenny Vangilder

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Lenny was involved in college athletics starting in the early 1980s, when he began working Tulane University sporting events while still attending Archbishop Rummel High School. He continued that relationship as a student at Loyola University, where he graduated in 1987. For the next 11 years, Vangilder worked in the sports information offices at Southwestern Louisiana (now UL-Lafayette) and Tulane;…

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