by Hita Mohan
Senior Snehi Vaghela bowled at the individual state tournament last week.
On Thursday, Jan. 17, Snehi Vaghela (12) competed in the bowling state individual competition. There were 24 girls bowling from around the state, and each of them bowled four games; then officials averaged their scores. The top 6 people came back on Friday, and play four to six games to determine the winner.
Having only bowled recreationally in the past, Vaghela joined the bowling team sophomore year with very little experience and has not regretted it since. She joined simply because she thought it would be a fun thing to do with her friends, never imagining that it would become serious. Now, however, she absolutely loves the sport and cannot imagine her life without it.
Without a doubt, Vaghela’s favorite moment this season was when she broke her record of 183 to with a score of 235. She was particularly excited because she finally joined the 200 club, which is a significant achievement among bowlers. “It was also special to me because it is something that I wanted to accomplish before going to college,” Vaghela explained.
Bowling coach, Ms. Hogan said, “Snehi has been a talented member of the team since she joined and has been progressively getting better. When we first began practicing, she told me that her goal was to qualify for the individual tournament at State. Her dedication and determination helped her attain her goal, and the whole team is proud of her!”
Ella Benitone (9) stated, “Snehi is always here to give tips to us inexperienced bowlers. She never fails to encourage us. The team admires her leadership, and are so proud that she made it to state.”
Teammate Bella Zafer (12) came and supported Vaghela during the tournament. According to Zafer “The tournament is always ridiculously hectic. The small bowling alley is always packed with spectators; however, I watched Snehi keep her cool throughout the entire tournament while some of the other competitors were literally on the brink of tears.”
Vaghela averaged a 122.5 on Thursday, and did not make the top 6. Ms. Hogan said, “At the tournament, Snehi struggled on difficult lane conditions. While she did not make the finals, she represented St. Mary's well with good sportsmanship and effort.”
Vaghela said, “I wasn’t too nervous until it was my turn. Then, I was playing on the same lanes as the girl who got 1st in the state last year so I unfortunately lost some of my confidence, but I am still glad that I made it to State. It was a fun experience that I am happy I got to take part in.”
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