Trinity’s Quinlan on a roll heading to state
Forest Park, 12/18/12 Trinity varsity bowler Tara Quinlan. | Curtis Lehmkuhl~Sun-Times Media
Friday Bowling: Trinity at state tournament at The Cherry Bowl in Rockford, 9:45 a.m.
Bowling: Trinity at state tournament at The Cherry Bowl in Rockford, 9:45 a.m.
Wednesday Girls basketball: Trinity vs. either Proviso East or Reavis in Class 4A Riverside-Brookfield Regional, 6 p.m.
Girls basketball: Trinity vs. either Proviso East or Reavis in Class 4A Riverside-Brookfield Regional, 6 p.m.
Updated: March 8, 2013 7:09AM
Trinity junior Tara Quinlan wasn’t prepared for the enormity of the state bowling tournament last season.
“I was really overwhelmed,” Quinlan said of her first state appearance. “There were so many people cheering and there was loud screaming. There were 10 people on the lane and four coaches in the bowler’s area and bleachers behind the chairs. I had trouble gaining confidence. I started the day bad and never let it go. I just fell apart at state.”
The environment won’t change a bit Friday when Quinlan makes her second straight state appearance after placing fourth at the Reavis Sectional, but one important factor will be different.
“I know what to expect now,” Quinlan said. “I’m used to the atmosphere.”
Quinlan rolled a 1,235 six-game series (206 average) to earn one of the sectional’s two individual berths to the state tournament Friday and Saturday at The Cherry Bowl in Rockford.
A slow start resulted in Quinlan placing 102nd at state last season as a sophomore with a 1,071 series.
“She played pretty consistent and gave a strong performance,” first-year Trinity coach Renee Koziol said. “She’s definitely ready for (state). She’s ready to go back to state and bowl better than last year. She’s coming on strong at the perfect time. Hopefully she’s peaking at the right time.”
Quinlan was the individual champion at the Girls Catholic Athletic Conference tournament, averaging 211, and is looking to remain on a roll.
“It’s a big accomplishment,” Quinlan said. “I feel like my hard work throughout the summer and beginning of the season is paying off. My scores are going up partly because of confidence and different equipment. I’m hoping to place in the top 20 and get my name out there for colleges.”
Quinlan has been bowling for 11 years and started after tagging along with her mother, an avid bowler.
She also played volleyball her freshman season and now competes in track in the spring.
Koziol has been impressed by Quinlan’s mental toughness, as well as expertise in the sport.
“She just kept improving game to game,” Koziol said. “She was focused. She didn’t give up at any time. If she had a bad frame, she would bounce back and not let it ruin her entire game. I was pretty proud of her. That comes with her experience in high-pressure situations.
“She knows how to analyze the conditions of the lanes and figure out when to make a ball change. She has the skill and ability to make adjustments.”