Zenner strikes again for Stevenson at Cougar Classic

By Rusty Silber
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 12/5/2015 10:44 PM

Richy got richer.

For the second straight year, Richy Zenner worked his way to the top of the leader board in the Cougar Classic at Brunswick Zone Hawthorn Lanes in Vernon Hills on Saturday.


And he stayed there.

The Stevenson senior rolled an even 1,400 pins over six games to successfully defend his title. He rolled a tournament-leading 745 (224, 268, 253) over the first three games, then added games of 259, 199 and 197.

"This means a lot going against some top-notch teams out here," Zenner said. "To get two wins in (back-to-back years) is unbelievable. I just had to keep grinding out there. I was making the spares, had some splits and was just hitting my target. I was pumped up from the first three games."

Defending champ Stevenson held an early lead (3,144), but the Patriots couldn't keep scoring at that same pace and finished in fourth place with 5,189.

Harlem won the tournament for the first time with 6,377, Freeport ended up in second (5,995) and Hononegah took third (5,968) in the 24-team field.

"We came out of the gate and started hard," Stevenson coach Cody Mathias said. "Everybody was working the way that they should, and it was looking good after the first three games. Then we hit a wall and ran out of steam a little bit. They realized after the three games that anything could happen, but we missed a lot of spares that cost us a lot of pins. We have to learn and keep building from these (tournaments)."

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Stevenson finished runner-up to Harlem three weeks ago. The Patriots' Zach Singer was the top individual in that six-game tournament.

Singer rolled an 1,183 on Saturday, while his brother Josh totaled a 1,148. Stevenson also received contributions from Gabe Gordon (1,120), Ted Tapas (734, four games) and Eddie Mandara (333, two games).

Lake Zurich finished fifth (5,902), Lake Park was eighth (5,668) and Vernon Hills placed ninth (5,621).

Lake Zurich's Connor Kovonda, Kyler Gerl of Harlem and Henry Laurich of Deerfield each rolled a 279, marking the high score of the tournament.

w"We had a goal to be in the top three and we fell just short," Lake Zurich coach Michael Sutton said. "We have to get more spares and we can be where we want to be. You have to beat the best to be the best. (Harlem) has established itself as the best at this point. Stevenson is up there, and we can compare ourselves to the tough teams up there."

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