The NDBPA State Scratch Team Tournament has become a favorite among many bowlers in the state. While many enjoy the tournament as a means of getting to bowl with great friends, team ND Storm has made it a habit of not only winning this event but doing so by a considerable margin.
Since NDBowling.com began back in 2012, the NDBPA State Team Tournament has been dominated by Team ND Storm (Dave Schick, Randy Peterson, Bob Vander Vorst, Eric Kempel). They have won all 4 that have been covered by NDBowling.com and, to the best of my knowledge, won the year before NDBowling.com was born giving them 5 consecutive titles. Over the course of the last 4 years, I have been fortunate enough to have a draw close to them to be able to witness exactly how these guys do it each year.
The formula is simple. 1 or 2 guys generally shoot very well, while 1 or 2 guys seem to struggle but are able to grind out a respectable number. Last season, Randy Peterson and Eric Kempel finished 1-2 in the singles portion of the event leading team ND Storm to a 291 pin victory in Williston. This season, Eric Kempel lead the way shooting 2606 and leading the singles portion of the event. Randy Peterson finished 4th in the singles option while Bob Vander Vorst and Dave Schick struggled a bit at times but posted a respectable score of 76 over. Team ND Storm posted a 2 day total of 10029 which gave them a 325 pin victory over the field.
These guys have made it look easy over the past few years. Having bowled this tournament quite a few times myself, I (Daren Seney) can easily say that it is far from easy. These guys have bowled together for several years. They know each others game and they communicate effectively. When I watch these guys bowl it reminds me of the bowling connection I have with my long time doubles partner Matt Smallin. It only takes us one shot for the other to know where to move when on a fresh pair of lanes. When you have that connection with your teammates, it is a lot easier to confidently make moves based on the first few shots. I have noticed over the last few years that many teams have shuffled people around in order to create a combination that can compete with Team ND Storm. I personally believe that talent can only get you so far in a team event. Being comfortable with your teammates and understanding their game will take your team to a whole new level and Team ND Storm has proven that.
Congrats again to ND Storm on yet another State Team Title!
I would also like to congratulate Joe Hensel for winning the Ebonite Warrior Guess the Score Contest. Joe guessed a 12 game score of 2320 and my final score was 2321.