New coach, same old results.
Although Billy Carl took over for former coach Dan Ahl, the Colonie High School boys’ bowling team didn’t miss a beat. In fact, they found their rhythm just fine, thank you.
The Garnet Raiders, who have practically owned the large-school crown in recent years under Ahl, cruised to the Section II Class A championship by knocking down 6,514 pins, and they also took the overall sectional lead for a berth in next month’s state tournament in Syracuse with a dominating performance Tuesday at Boulevard Bowl.
If today’s Class B champion doesn’t overtake them, the Garnet Raiders are headed for the states, something that seems like a rite of passage every season.
“Give the guys a lot of credit. They made a lot of spares today,” said Carl, who took over the Col-onie program when Ahl moved his pro-shop operation to Spare Time Clifton Park and no longer had the time to work with the team. “We missed only nine spares all day, and it was a special shot out there.”
Although Hoosick Falls won the boys’ Class C-D title with a 5,822 pins on Monday, Colonie obliterated that mark by nearly 700 pins.
“Winning the sectional crown feels good,” said senior left-hander Charles Moeske, who topped the Garnet Raiders with a 1,394 that included a 692 triple in the morning block and a 702 in the afternoon. “We didn’t even look at the number that Hoosick Falls rolled. All we wanted to do was win the sectional title.”
Charles said that Carl’s coaching style has fit in well with the Garnet Raiders.
“Both coaches have a lot of experience. I’ve come along well with coach Carl, but I want to give coach Ahl a lot of credit, too.”
“Once we figured out the lanes, we relaxed, and we bowled very well,” said junior Rick Rovelli, who added a 638 triple in the morning and a 676 in the afternoon for a 1,314 total. “We were really disappointed with how we bowled last year, and although there was a lot of work this year, we got it done.”
Carl said the transition in coaches went smoothly, mostly because he knew so many of the kids from the junior program he coaches.
“There is a lot of pressure taking over this team, because I didn’t want to let anyone down,” Carl said. “I’m glad the school had faith in me.
“My philosophy is that if everything is OK with someone’s game from the darts to the foul line, it will all work out fine. I concentrate more on the physical game, although we also work with how to adjust out on the lanes.”
Rounding out the balanced Garnet Raiders’ starting lineup were junior Nick Shaw (664-630-1,294), junior Justin Carl (683-583-1,266) and senior Nick Peckowitz (616-630-1,246).
Guilderland finished second with a 6,279, followed by Bethlehem Central with a 6,075.
Guilderland’s Austin Van Buren moved into the top spot on the Section II team with a 1,420. Moeske, if Colonie doesn’t go to the states, is in second place, while Pat DeVoe of Bethlehem is in third with a 1,363. A.J. Indovina of Guilderland is in fourth with a 1,358, followed by Marc Lambert (1,331) of Queensbury and Ken Marbot (1,317) of Hoosick Falls. Seth Adams (1,282) of CBA would be the alternate in the current standings.
In a related note, Section II co-coordinator Hugo McGroty, who has held that position for the last 14 years, said he is stepping down after this season.
Although he wasn’t certain, he was thinking about returning to the coaching ranks. He used to coach at Schalmont and said he misses the coaching aspect of the game, although he wouldn’t rule out working on the Section II committee.
Columbia’s Bill Neumann is the other Section II co-coordinator.
Team scores: Colonie 6,514, Guilderland 6,279, Bethlehem 6,075, Niskayuna 5,948, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake 5,917, Queensbury 5,915, Columbia 5,845, Christian Brothers Academy 5,819, Schenectady 5,809, Shenendehowa 5,785, Ballston Spa 5,721, Albany 5,702, Saratoga Springs 5,466, Averill Park 5,446, Shaker 5,387, Amsterdam 5,313, Troy 4,683.
Top triples: Pat DeVoe (Bethlehem) 756, Charles Moeske (Colonie) 702, James Brown (Albany) 692.
Top singles: Austin Van Buren (Guilderland) 279, Cliff Miller (Ballston Spa) 276, A.J. Indovina (Guilderland) 275.
Section II team: Austin Van Buren (Guilderland) 1,420, Charles Moeske (Colonie) 1,394, Pat DeVoe (Bethlehem) 1,363, A.J. Indovina (Guilderland) 1,358, Mark Lambert (Queensbury) 1,331, Ken Marbot (Hoosick Falls) 1,317, Kyle Adams (CBA) 1,282 (current alternate).