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Moeller Bowlers Battling Numbers

January 29, 2013
Cincinnati Moeller High School

Scott Springer, Community Press


Moeller Bowlers Battling Numbers

KENWOOD — Regardless of the sport, losing seven seniors and 12 of 16 participants from a previous season can make life complicated for any coach.

Such is the case of veteran Moeller bowling chief Bob Orr. With just six on the Crusader varsity, Orr sometimes must roll the dice on how his squad might roll the ball.

There’s also elements one can’t control. A recent flu bug wiped out a match against Elder at Western Bowl that the Panthers graciously rescheduled.

Despite the situation, Moeller’s rollers have already equaled last year’s mark in league wins. They’ve done so with one senior, Greg Lind, four juniors and a sophomore.

“The record’s OK,” Orr said. “We’ve played some easier teams so far and now we’re going into the meat of the season.”

Orr’s six shooters average roughly between 169 and 182, with junior Philip Cleves and senior Lind leading the upper end. The issue with having only six on the squad is there’s little room for error. One bad day can be costly.

“Last year, they were all three- and four-year bowlers,” Orr said. “They could sub for each other interchangeably almost. When a guy had a couple opens (frames) you could pop a guy in for him.”

This season was not unexpected, as Orr had seen the number of participants drop for other sports, other choices or employment. On the upside, Moeller did have eight freshmen come out for the team this season.

“It’s one of the largest classes in the area,” Orr said. “It’s very unpredictable. I think we’re making a turn and word is spreading about the program. We had some kids from St. Gertrude we ran into at the bowling alley that were real interested. I think we’ll get better in the future.”

While none of the Crusaders are in the 185-plus range of the 2012 team, many have improved dramatically in a year’s time. Greg Lind’s average has improved by nearly 30 pins and sophomore T.J. Snyder is up around 15 pins. Juniors Cleves, Steve Snyder, Grant Godbey and Tony Platz are separated by 13 pins or less.

“To gain 15 pins is pretty substantial,” Orr said. “The higher you go, the harder it is. I look forward to T.J. (Snyder) in the future. He has a lot of potential and loves the sport.”

With five returning varsity bowlers for next year and a flock of freshmen that will be one year wiser; Orr is optimistic.

It’s his experience that former Moeller bowlers often return with better skills. The Crusaders recently held an alumni match where 20 ex-prepsters showed up for a few frames of fun and old stories.

This season’s tale is still in progress with home matches with Seven Hills on Jan. 30 and Walnut Hills Feb. 5. The Crusaders also have tough Northwest and Loveland squads ahead.

In the league, Orr thinks the title will likely go to La Salle or St. Xavier. The Lancers won the Greater Catholic League tournament, with Moeller finishing fourth.


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