By Wade Linville –
Eastern High School Athletic Director Jerod Jodrey appeared at the school district’s June 20 Board of Education meeting, requesting that bowling be approved as Eastern’s newest sport.
In a unanimous decision with all school members present except Lowell Richey, the Eastern Local School District approved Jodrey’s request.
“I do think it’s a great opportunity for students to get involved in,” said Jodrey.
To be able to qualify as an official Southern Hills Athletic Conference sport, there must be at least six schools in the conference with bowling teams and, according to Jodrey, that shouldn’t be a problem in the near future due to the number of schools in the conference who have either approved bowling or are in the proposal process.
According to Jodrey, Lynchburg-Clay High School already has a bowling team. Whiteoak has already approved a bowling team for next year and North Adams, Ripley-Union-Lewis-Huntington, and West Union are all in the proposal process with hopes of starting bowling teams.
Bowling will be a winter sport, providing an opportunity for students who do not cheer or play basketball to compete in a sport during that season.
Based on Jodrey’s report submitted to the Eastern Board of Education, 76 of 238 students who completed a high school bowling survey noted that they were interested in trying out/participating on an Eastern High School bowling team.
A total of 58 of the 238 students surveyed said they were interested in trying out/participating in high school bowling at Eastern but would not be able to afford their own bowling ball, shoes, or other needed equipment to participate.
There were a total of 104 students of the 238 to complete the survey that said they would not be interested in participating on a bowling team.
Possible practice and match bowling alleys for the Eastern High School team include Sunset Bowl in Panhandle, Community Lanes in Georgetown, and Highland Lanes in Hillsboro at a cost of $100 per student bowler for the entire practice season.
Bowlers will be required to provide their own transportation to practices, and EHS will provide bus transportation to matches.
If the SHAC lacks the six schools to have bowling teams in the upcoming season, Jodrey suggested that Eastern High School could present its own awards for bowling at the school’s Winter Sports Awards Night.
“It would be a great thing for kids who aren’t involved in other stuff,” Eastern Local School District Board of Education member Martin Yockey said of the school district’s new bowling program.