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Wildcat bowling teams ready to strike

Front row (left to right): Jacob Delong, Mitch Kessler, Drew Pappas, Michael Johnson and Kyle Woody. Back row: Head Coach J.R. Lafnear, Sean Mckinney, Jason Petty, Brady Wynkoop, Brandon Hurlburt and Asst. Coach Steve Burgess. (click for larger version)
December 25, 2013 - According to Coach J.R. Lafnear, "the high school bowling team is excited about this season."

The boys' varsity is "talented and experienced," said Lafnear and they expect to "compete at a very high level this year."

"Our goal is to win the OAA Red division and to compete in every event we enter this year," he added. "Then turn our thoughts to regionals and State."

Front row (left to right): Ashley Miller, Stephanie-Anne Chizmadia, Hannah Farmer, and Megan Kessler. Back row: Head Coach J.R. Lafnear, Alyssa Hurlburt, Bailee Malinowski and Asst. Coach Fred Heichel. Photos by Matt Johnson. (click for larger version)
Senior Captians Brandon Hurlburt and Sean McKinney bring "good solid leadership," while Senior Kyle Woody and juniors, Brady Wynkoop, Drew Pappas and Jake Delong round out the core of the team. Seniors Mitch Kessler, Michael Johnson and Jason Petty add nice depth to the team.

"All of these bowlers have experience and talent," noted Lafnear. "We will be lead by All Conference first team returnees McKinney and Hurlburt, but the three juniors and Woody won't be far behind. Pappas was the JV state champion his freshman year and OAA singles champion last year. Woody, Wynkoop and Delong have all improved their games over the summer."

Last year's league champions, the Clarkston Wolves, will be the team to beat again this year, Lafnear said.

"We lost two close matches with them last year and we'll be looking to redeem ourselves. We will not be happy finishing second again this year," he added. "I expect a very good year from this group. They are strong bowlers and have matured into a good team. If the bowling gods are on our side, we could do things no other Oxford team has done."

On the girls' varsity, Lafnear said they are "young, but talented."

"We will be in the hunt for the OAA red division title for sure," he said. "Clarkston and Lake Orion have talented teams as well. They will be the teams to beat."

Lafnear believes starters from last year are better this year as well, which include junior Captain Stefanie- Anne Chizmadia, sophmore Hannah Farmer and Junior Alyssa Hurlburt.

"Hurlburt was on the All Conference team last year," he noted. "Senior Ashley Miller is back and healthy, she should help a lot."

Lafnear said freshman Megan Kessler who "has strong skills and will play a big role" in the team's success, as well as newcomer Bailee Malinowski, who will give "strong support as well."

After finishing third in the OAA last year, Lafnear is expecting the girls to do well this year, too.

"We are deeper this year than last and have some girls on the JV team that can help if needed, he added. "They have a chance to be a real good team and they work very hard. I like the teams make up and how they all get along."

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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