Fitting finale: Spartan senior bowlers embrace ending prep careers at ‘home’

Fitting finale: Spartan senior bowlers embrace ending prep careers at 'home'
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“Home is where the heart is,” is just another cliché for most people. But it takes on special meaning for East Ascension’s three senior bowlers on Thursday.

“Having the chance to do this — to bowl one last time at the place where we’ve bowled our whole career ¯ it means everything,” Owen Stutzman said. “We go in knowing we’re the underdog. 

“I am so proud of us … all of us … as a team. We worked and got better. This gives us a chance to show how far we have come.”

The EAHS boys squad won’t be the top local team going into the LHSAA Bowling Championships set to begin at 9:30 a.m. Thursday with team semifinals at Premier Lanes in Gonzales. That role belongs to the top-seeded Dutchtown girls.

No. 3 East Ascension faces four-time defending boys champion Brother Martin, the No. 2 seed, in boys semifinal action set for 11:45 a.m. Top-seeded Central Lafourche meets No. 13 H.L. Bourgeois in the other boys semifinal.

Stutzman and fellow seniors, Jonathan Petit and Davon Dickerson, have experienced a year of growth as veterans on a roster that includes three freshmen.

There also is a fourth “rookie” to note. First-year Spartan coach Heidi Texada was part of championship teams as a competitor for Lafayette High.

“I have enjoyed this season so much,” Texada said. “They have all been receptive to the things I say and I have loved watching every single boy improve.

“To me, that is the best part about this team. We have continued to get better all season long as a team. On top of that, they (senior) are great kids.”

There are no ego issues for the Spartans, according to Stutzman. While some teams have one or two bowlers who excel above the rest, this East Ascension team is balanced.

“Instead of relying on one or two people, we’re all on about the same level,” Stutzman said. “If one of us has an off day, we know somebody else will pick up the slack.

“We trust each other. We know Brother Martin is a very good team. We are excited about the opportunity to be in the semifinals as a team.”

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