Brother Martin tops Jesuit in bowling showdown, 21-6

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HARAHAN – In the sport of high school bowling – where two-thirds of the team score comes from the result of head-to-head matches through a six-player lineup – pinfall is big, but depth is just as big.

Four-time state champion Brother Martin put its depth on display Monday in a 21-6 victory over Jesuit at Colonial Lanes. The match was streamed live by Crescent City Sports.

Brother Martin bowling
The Brother Martin team rushes to greet senior Drew Gardner after his fill-ball strike clinched a 204-203 victory in the second game against Jesuit (Photo by Denise Deffes).

The Crusaders (9-1) got nine 200 games from its top three spots in the lineup, paving the way for a 3,757 team series.

Jesuit (9-2) is “a good team. That’s a really good team,” said Brother Martin coach Bruce Himbert. “The numbers won’t tell you how close of a match this was.

“I told the kids we wanted to make our spares, try to stay in front of them and try to keep it close.”

Brother Martin won the first game 6-2 and took a 103-pin edge in total pins as the Nos. 1-3 bowlers in the Crusaders lineup combined to shoot 673 on lanes 15-16, 150 pins more than their counterparts.

The second game was much tighter but again ended 6-2 in the Crusaders’ favor when Drew Gardner struck on the fill ball to defeat Ben Hunn 204-203 at No. 6, giving Brother Martin a 12-4 edge going into the final game.

Brother Martin closed it out by claiming six of eight points again in the final game.

While the right-hand pair – featuring the top six average bowlers in the New Orleans region – was tight as expected with Jesuit winning five of nine matches, the Crusaders’ left side won eight of nine matches.

Bowling in the No. 1 spot in the lineup, junior Carson Colletti led Brother Martin with a 658 series on games of 219-215-222. Junior Ethan Porta opened with a 230 in the No. 3 spot and finished with a 646 series, while freshman Jacob Vangilder, at No. 2, opened with a 224 as part of a 645 set. When Porta moved into the No. 4 slot for the last two games, senior Darren Martino entered at No. 3 and fired games of 222 and 211. Ricky Carmona had a 608 series at No. 5.

Jesuit junior Gary Sims, bowling in the fourth position, led all bowlers with a 684 series on games of 212-236-236 and captured three of the Blue Jays’ points. Jesuit’s Nos. 5 and 6 bowlers, Luke Wood and Ben Hunn, had series of 608 and 605, respectively, as Jesuit finished with a 3,527 team series.

Brother Martin entered the day seventh in the unofficial LHSAA power ratings, but Monday’s win will provide a significant boost.

“We’re in good shape,” Himbert said, “but we still have a lot of work to do.”

Both teams return to action Thursday at AMF All Star Lanes in Kenner, Brother Martin against East Jefferson and Jesuit for its regular-season finale against Holy Cross. Brother Martin meets Holy Cross in a makeup of a postponed match on March 30.

“We’ve got two matches left, but this match was everything,” Himbert said. “You look forward to it because you’ve got a good team to bowl against.”

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Lenny Vangilder

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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