Bowlers Settle For Eighth At Golden Bear Classic

Jessica Zalewski led Felician in frame average during the Golden Bear Classic on Feb. 10-12, 2017. (Steven R. Smith)
Jessica Zalewski led Felician in frame average during the Golden Bear Classic on Feb. 10-12, 2017. (Steven R. Smith)

READING, Pa. – The Felician University women's bowling team settled for eighth place out of 12 teams at the 2017 Golden Bear Classic, contested Friday through Sunday at Berks Lanes and hosted by Kutztown University. Felician went 5-8 in dual matches over the weekend, including 0-2 against nationally-ranked opponents.

The Golden Bear Classic is one of the only multi-day NCAA events nationwide each season comprised solely of Baker matches. Each team bowled five 5-game Baker matches on Friday and five more on Saturday. An 11th 5-game Baker match Sunday morning completed round-robin competition, at which point teams were paired for the playoffs, consisting of two best-of-seven Baker matches.

Junior right-hander Jessica Zalewski (Barnegat, N.J./Barnegat) led the Golden Falcons for the weekend with a frame average of 18.88 during the 11 round-robin matches. Zalewski was involved in 95 of a possible 110 frames, and started in the anchor position in nine of the 11 matches.

Freshman righty Nicole Aumack (Brick, N.J./Brick Township) bowled in 83 frames and posted a 17.27 frame average. Aumack started six matches during round-robin play, and was Felician's anchor during both playoff matches. As a team, the Golden Falcons averaged 171.3 per Baker game for the tournament.

Felician went 2-3 during the opening day of competition, defeated Roberts Wesleyan College in Match 3, before salvaging its day with a 939 five-game series and a 200-pin victory over Morgan State University in Match 5. The Golden Falcons sat in seventh place after Friday's play.

Saturday began auspiciously. With junior Alex Laurenzano (Brick, N.J./Brick Township) starting in the leadoff position and Aumack anchoring, Felician shot 250 in the third game of Match 6 and a 971 for the match in a win over Coppin State University. Both totals were the second-highest in Baker play in the three-year history of the Golden Falcon program. Kristin Natoli (Freehold, N.J./Howell), Aumack, and Kristen Keller (Reading, Pa./Schuylkill Valley) comprised the balance of the starting line-up.

But Felician could muster only one more win on Saturday, over Wilmington (Del.) University in Match 8. The Golden Falcons suffered lopsided setbacks to No. 16 Adelphi University and No. 20 Franklin Pierce University, and were shaved by Chestnut Hill College, 840-834. A win on Sunday morning over Saint Peter's University left Felician with a 5-6 round-robin record and a No. 8 seed heading into the playoffs.

Matched up with Caldwell University, Felician took the first two games before Caldwell roared back to win the next three. The Golden Falcons forced a seventh game, which Caldwell won, 195-151. In the eighth-place match, Felician was defeated again by Chestnut Hill, 4-1.

Duquesne University, a first-year program, defeated Franklin Pierce, 4-3, in the title match to win the tournament. Adelphi University was 10-1 in round-robin play before losing in the semifinals and settling for third place.

Felician saw its won-lost record for the season fall to 30-27. The Golden Falcons back in action next weekend at the James Brown Classic in Towson, Md., hosted by Morgan State.