St. Clair Shores South Lake’s Matthew Rushlow takes a roll during the Jan. 18 qualifying round of the 2019 Macomb County championships. The Cavaliers, according to coach Bob Nelson, could potentially send four bowlers to the Division 3 state finals.

St. Clair Shores South Lake’s Matthew Rushlow takes a roll during the Jan. 18 qualifying round of the 2019 Macomb County championships. The Cavaliers, according to coach Bob Nelson, could potentially send four bowlers to the Division 3 state finals.

Photo by Erin Sanchez


South Lake boys bowling in line for division title

By: Jason Carmel Davis | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published January 25, 2019

ST. CLAIR SHORES — Through six matches in Macomb Area Conference Silver Division play, the St. Clair Shores South Lake boys bowling team has an unblemished record and a two-match lead over Warren Lincoln in the standings.

That puts the team in line for a division title. If the Cavaliers can close it out, it would be the first division championship for the team in eight seasons.

“I’ve had this core group who started with me when they were freshmen. They’ve matured and their hard work has paid off,” South Lake coach Bob Nelson said. “It’s showing in their averages, and they’re having fun and enjoying themselves. In the past, they took their licks. That’s changed. They’re having a lot of fun and winning matches.”

South Lake has six league matches remaining. The Cavaliers have already beaten each of the four other MAC Silver teams at least once. South Lake faced Warren Lincoln Jan. 25, after press time. The Cavaliers and Abes match up again Feb. 8. The final division matches take place Feb. 11.

Nelson said the success comes after the team dedicated itself to offseason work. The South Lake coach said he encouraged his bowlers to compete in offseason tournaments, and that’s paid off. That’s shone in the performance of seniors such as Logan McCrillis and Matt Rushlow.

“In the past, guys would get upset with a bad roll and that would lead to another one,” Nelson said. “Now they just brush it off. They just get back to it and do what they have to do.”

One bowler who has stepped up to help the squad is freshman Donovan Romita. He has carried a 202 average and started bowling at the age of 2. Romita said encouragement from the more seasoned bowlers has played a role in his success.

“I’ve got a lot of juniors and seniors helping me out,” said Romita, who rolls with both hands. “We’re having tons of fun. It’s fun going to the different bowling alleys competing. We’re just trying to stay on top of our games.”

Winning a division title would be great for the program, Nelson said. That could serve as a springboard for sending a number of bowlers to the state finals.

The Cavaliers in 2018 sent two bowlers to the Division 3 finals — one boy and one girl. Nelson said he expects Rushlow and senior Jenna Hall, from the girls team, to make return trips to the finals. The South Lake coach believes McCrillis and Romita could make a run too.

“I’m happy about where the program is right now,” Nelson said. “With what I’m seeing from them as far as increasing their averages, this could be a special year.”