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Signal Mountain High bowling team strikes it big

Signal Mountain High School student Matthew Holliday is the first bowler in the history of the school’s team to have participated in the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association Bowling Individual State Tournament, held this year Jan. 24 near Nashville in Smyrna.

Holliday competed against approximately 80 other bowlers from across the state and finished 33rd with an average score of 195, said coach Mark Bratcher.

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Signal Mountain High School student Matthew Holliday is the first bowler from the school to participate in the state tournament.

“Thirty-third is good for his first shot at it,” said Bratcher.

Out of the eight bowlers who participated in the state tournament from the Chattanooga area, Holliday finished third.

He qualified for state by finishing third in the district, averaging 199 this season. Holliday was fourth in average for the regular season in the Chattanooga area, which includes Cleveland and Athens.

He led the Signal Mountain boys team to a tie for first place in the district during the regular season.

“We actually had a chance,” said Bratcher. “It went down to the tenth frame of the last game.”

The boys’ team also won second place in the District Tournament and third place in the Region Tournament.

Holliday was named to the regular season All-District team, the All-District Tournament team and the All-Region Tournament team. Both he and SMHS bowler Mark Hall were named to the All-Region team.

Out of three girls’ teams in the district, the SMHS team placed third in its first full year as a team, added Bratcher.

“For the first year, that’s pretty good for them,” he said.

Bratcher said he is looking for more players to fill up the teams next season, as he is losing at least five boys and three girls as this year’s team members graduate.

“You don’t have to be athletic, run fast or jump high,” he said.

Aside from losing a few players, the outlook is bright for next season, said Bratcher.

“I have four boys who have been bowling with me three to four years who have a chance at the State Tournament next year,” he said.

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