By Gene Phelps
BRANDON – Bowler Josh Turberville left Fannin Lanes last season feeling “terrible” about Tupelo’s showing in the MHSAA Class II State Bowling Tournament.
The Golden Wave, a five-time champion at the time, finished fourth and didn’t qualify for the finals.
“I don’t know what happened last year,” Turberville said.
Well, it didn’t happen again Friday. The Golden Wave returned to the winner’s circle with a 3-1 Baker-play victory Friday against Neshoba Central in the finals to capture their sixth state title in seven years.
“They bowled really well today,” Tupelo coach Susan Dudley said. “It was a team effort.”
Tupelo beat Neshoba 218-183, 214-148, 171-203 and 176-148 in the Baker finals.
Tupelo’s Lady Wave captured their fourth consecutive state championship with a 3-0 win against Neshoba Central. They won 143-115, 186-161 and 172-150.
“It’s still thrilling every time,” said sophomore Taylor Russell, who has bowled on all four title teams.
Lady Wave coach Brian Dudley credited his team’s ability to close frames as the key to their success.
“We got our spares,” he said. “We were confident today. We jumped out fast.”
In the qualifying round, Tupelo’s girls led the way with 3,306 pins. Neshoba Central was second in the eight-team field with 2,863.
Russell paced the Lady Wave with a 213 high game and a 755 high series. Ellye Gafford added a 192 game while Russell had a 191.
Ashleigh Burns rolled a 663 series, Gafford 644 and Addison Gable 636 to add to the Lady Wave total.
In the qualifying round, Tupelo’s boys knocked down 3,896 pins to lead the eight contenders. Neshoba Central recorded 3,696.
Clayton Horton led the Golden Wave with an 895 series and a 246 high game. He also rolled a 244 game. Marcus Robinson had a 235 high game and a 791 average. Drew Turberville rolled a 225 and Josh Turberville a 223 for Tupelo.