Boys down most pins in playoffs’ opening round

The boys and girls bowling teams of Boulder City High School are both two matches away from claiming a state championship after they both defeated The Meadows in the first round of postseason play Jan. 28.

Ed Rassuchine led the Eagles with a 627 series as they won all nine points against The Meadows at The Orleans. Boulder City’s total pinfall of 2,331 was the highest of the 24 schools during the first round of the playoffs.

Randall Berkheimer’s first game of 234 was high for the match, and his 616 series was second on the team to Rassuchine’s 627. As the lone senior on the team, Berkheimer said he looks at his age as a beneficial way to help the team continue its success.

“Because I’m the oldest, I’m the one who looks to help all of my teammates. Even Teagan (Smale), he’ll have a bad day and I’ll help him out,” Berkheimer said. “As a team, we’re awesome.”

Smale, whose 213 average was one of the highest throughout the district, struggled against The Meadows by finishing with a 190 average for the day. He credited Berkheimer for being the guy to lift everybody’s spirits while keeping the competition at a higher level.

“He’s been like a brother to us. He kept the competition high,” Smale said.

As their mantra has gone the entire season, the Eagles preached the importance of picking up their spares, especially with only two matches standing between them and their second-straight Division I-A state championship.

“Spares are going to be huge,” Smale said. “If we cover our spares, we’ll be fine.”

Boulder City faces a familiar foe in the state semis in the Del Sol Dragons. The Eagles crushed Del Sol each time the teams bowled each other during the regular season, but Berkheimer said Boulder City can’t take Del Sol lightly in the postseason.

“I’m not really expecting anything less than 30 pins (differential) per game,” he said. “I think it’s going to be an awesome matchup. I’m hoping, and this is a weird thing to hope, but I’m hoping it’s a close match.”

In their first matchup with Del Sol on Dec. 15, the Eagles won total pinfall by more than 400 pins. Del Sol squeaked by the Clark Chargers in the opening round of the postseason with a 5-4 victory and a pinfall advantage of 2,056 to 1,990.

If the Eagles continue their winning ways against Del Sol, they’ll face either Sierra Vista or Chaparral for the state title.

Not to be outdone by the boys, Boulder City’s girls bowling team pulled off the upset against The Meadows in the first round of the playoffs.

Led by Bailey Bennett-Jordan’s 404 series, the Lady Eagles took two of three games against The Meadows. Like their male counterparts, the Lady Eagles will take on Del Sol in the state semifinals.

“We need to focus more, but if we’re on top of our game, then we should have a chance,” Bennett-Jordan said.

Boulder City’s pinfall of 1,472 was enough to take down the 1,411 of The Meadows.

Both semifinal matches, which are held at The Orleans, begin at 2:30 p.m. Monday.

Contact reporter Steven Slivka at sslivka@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow @StevenSlivka on Twitter.

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