SHSU Bowling All Hands in for Southland Championships

The Sam Houston State University bowling team is traveling to Jonesboro, ARK this weekend to compete in the 2017 Southland Bowling League Championship.

Eight schools will be present at the conference tournament, three of which are nationally ranked among the top eight. The Arkansas State Red Wolves are ranked above the Bearkats in third place by only .7 points, and last year, SHSU fell to the Red Wolves in a 4-0 sweep during the championship match.

“We are indirect rivals with them [ASU] and when we beat each other, we beat each other well,” Hagen said. “With how this season has gone, I feel pretty confident that it could be them and us in the championships again.”

SHSU will also face off against Vanderbilt, who is fifth in the nation, No. 7 Stephen F. Austin, No. 13 Monmouth, No. 14 Tulane, No. 28 Valparaiso and No. 43 Louisiana Tech.

“This is such a competitive field that once you potentially get past the first round, you’re bowling a top five team,” Hagen said. “There are no give me wins in this conference.”

The Bearkats will enter the tournament ranked fourth in the nation with a win percentage of 75. The team also holds a season record of 76-26, one of the best records in program history.

“This season we had the least amount of losses that we have ever had,” Hagen said. “There is a lot of good to take away from this season, and after all of our trials and tribulations, this was a good season.”

SHSU concluded their regular season last weekend in Smyrna, TN at the Music City Classic where the Bearkats went 8-4 and finished 11. Last weekends loss was the lowest finish for the Bearkats all season, but Hagen believes the conference tournament will have a better turnout.

“We could have easily gone 10-2 or 11-1 this weekend but unfortunately we beat ourselves,” Hagen said. “We just need to have short-term memory and forget about this weekend and I think if we go into this weekend with a clear mind, things will be good for us.”

The Southland Bowling League Championship will take place at Hijinx Lanes in Jonesboro, AK. All rounds of the double-elimination tournament will be live streamed at with the first four matches taking place at 8 a.m. on Friday.

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