Girls bowling: Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg's Frick claim regional titles
Haylie Frick of Schaumburg was in fourth place after five games were in the books at Saturday's girls bowling regional at Poplar Creek Bowl in Hoffman Estates.
A 249-pin sixth game later, the junior was a champion.
The clutch final game from Frick boosted her to the Schaumburg regional individual title with a 1,282 total for six games.
"I didn't really know where I stood, I was just looking to make it to next week," said Frick, as her stellar performance qualified her to compete at next Saturday's Zion-Benton sectional. "Right after it (the meet) was over I was asking what place I was in and my dad said 'I'm guessing first, but don't get your hopes up.'
"It turned out to be true and it feels like all the hard work has paid off. Feels great to get this win, and sometimes when you just don't know what place you're in, the best things happen."
Buffalo Grove followed up last week's Mid-Suburban League championship with a team win at Saturday's regional. The Bison (5,429 pinfall) will now advance to the Z-B sectional in Waukegan, as will runner-up Conant (5.350), third place Hersey (5,111) and fourth place Vernon Hills (5.078).
Rebecca Howard (1,230, third place) and Sara Clay (1,213, fifth) led the way for BG.
"We were just taking it game-by-game and frame-by-frame," said Clay, a junior. "We didn't realize we had won until they made the announcement (at the awards ceremony). We were a little surprised but also very happy and very excited.
"I kept telling myself to take each frame slowly, try to throw one ball, get a strike, and not have to worry about throwing the second ball for a spare."
Wilhemina Garner, a senior from Lake Park, earned an individual advancement to Waukegan by finishing second at 1,253, including a 249 top game.
"This is surreal," said Garner. "I've never been to state before and since it's my senior year, I'm so happy to have the opportunity to go even further after today. I wish my team could come with me, and I give all the credit to my teammates today. They kept me humble when I felt like I might not get out (and advance to sectionals.)"
"She is just a great all-around athlete," said Lancers coach Dominique Didier of Garner. "Wilhemina has a great attitude, and whether she's having a strong game or a not-so-strong game, she's always cheering on her teammates."
Elk Grove senior Lillie Zahn became one of the 10 top bowlers not part of qualifying team to move on to state by posting a 1,002.
"She's a super kid," said Grenadiers coach Robert Ray of Zahn. "Lillie is a three-sport athlete (she also runs cross country and track), she's very intense and takes things seriously. Her goal is to always be better and it's all about practice, practice, practice. She puts in the work and was more aggressive this year."
The Grens also had two bowlers advance to Waukegan in the chair division -- Sonia Sanchez-Corrillo (266 3-game series) and Natalia Villegas (248).
"This is crazy," said Villegas, who finished second at the state tourney at Cherry Bowl last season, of her qualification. "I've got the support of my team and I'm learning all I can from them. This year I've gained more knowledge about the game and been able to figure out what works for me."
Senior Jessica Donovan of Hoffman Estates shot 1,229 to finish fourth will make the trip to the Z-B sectional as an individual.
"Very stressful today," said Donovan, who rolled two games of 230 Saturday, "but also a very good time. I've definitely had to work hard, but I've also had the support of my teammates and my family."
Other scores of note included a 1,200 from Jemma Skweres of Conant, good for sixth overall; a 1,195 (7th place) by Cassandra Hyland of the Cougars; 1,161 from Hersey's Morgan Breden, good for eighth place, and 1,152 from Kayla McNamara of Vernon Hills, who finished ninth.
Senior Mia Shiakallis of BG helped the Bison winning effort with a 1,083 series.
Other competitors moving forward out of the Schaumburg regional will be Autumn Kalady of the Saxons, who shot 1028; Tarrah Phillips from Palatine (1025); Tori Cinquepalmi of Hoffman (998); Marissa Robinson (979) from Prospect; Emma Heiser (951) of Schaumburg and Fremd's Medha Yaragorla.
"I was a little nervous today," said Yaragorla, a sophomore who rolled a 1,030, including a 209 final game, "but I had everyone here supporting me, including my friends and my family, and my coach (Ruben Hinojosa), who really helped me improve this year."
At Dundee-Crown: Barrington advanced four bowlers out of the Dundee-Crown regional who will compete at the Kaneland sectional at Mardi Gras Lanes in Sycamore next Saturday. Sophomore Emily O'Byrn (1,120), junior Autumn Fox (1,091), senior Paige Bradley (1,023) and junior Sonia Halabi (1,008) all advanced for the Fillies.
At Metea Valley: Leyden had three girls advance to next Saturday's Hinsdale South sectional. Junior Jenna Batson (1,104), freshman Breanna Pimentel (1,065) and junior Natalia Owczarek (1,024) all moved on for the Eagles.