It’s been a season of transition so far for the Wyandotte Roosevelt High School boys bowling team.
After a tough first year for Coach Ronny Sheeler that saw them lose all of their games in 2020, things are looking up with wins in two of their first three matches this year.
“The varsity boys had a rough season last year,” he said. “We had a younger team last year, with a lot of freshman varsity players, but they gained experience that’s helped them this year.”
The Bears opened with an exhibition meet against Dearborn Divine Child and beat them in a close game before dominating Trenton 26-4. Sheeler said it’s a good start for a season in which a .500 finish would be a big step forward.
At press time the team was entering its fifth week of what likely will be an eight- or nine-game season, depending on the COVID-19 situation. Typical seasons comprise up to 15 meets with multiple different tournaments and usually end around mid-March.
The pandemic also has affected attendance at the games; the team has been recording and posting them online so parents can watch safely.
In Downriver League games, teams get six players at a time, but Sheeler has a total of 14 varsity and junior varsity players to choose from in case of illness. And he likes that those players have developed a good team chemistry.
“Everybody on our team gets along, and that definitely makes for a pleasurable experience for the kids,” said Sheeler, a former player who attended Roosevelt from 2004 to 2008.
Sheeler’s looking for contributions from up-and-coming freshman Jack Murray and junior Jacob Vernier as the team prepares to take on traditional rivals Woodhaven (“definitely a contender”) and Lincoln Park, which “always has a good team.”
“Jacob’s been our best so far,” he said. “Every year he’s improving.”
As is the rest of the squad, Sheeler said, adding, “Our team this year would definitely dominate last year’s team.”
He attributes that improvement to the mind-set he has worked to instill since last year.
“I just tell them to come and have fun,” he said. “Try and enjoy yourself and be the best you can. Just by doing that, this season is looking like a good stepping-stone to next year with a good, up-and-coming team.”