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Plum bowling teams each finish section play with 10-0 records | TribLIVE.com
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Plum bowling teams each finish section play with 10-0 records

Michael Love
| Tuesday, February 24, 2015 2:06 p.m
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Michael Love | Trib Total Media
Members of the 2014-15 Plum boys and girls bowling teams are, in front, from left, Sarah Kirkpatrick, Bridget Bednar, Allie Dick, Bethany LaBertew, Dom DelVecchio, Cameron Meyers, Megan Christman and Talia Pilyih. In back are Kristen Ankers, Josh Christman, Tyler Vaill, Logan Simmons, Jake Cubarney, Franklin Mercurio, Jackson Rogers, Noah Coulson and Josh Mallik. Also on the boys team is Josh Cheeks.

The Plum varsity boys and girls bowling teams finished off a regular season no other school in the WPIBL could match.

Both Mustangs squads finished 10-0 and entered the week hoping for more as the WPIBL postseason tournaments begin.

The Plum boys were to bowl against 17 other teams at the WPIBL team championships on Wednesday at New Great Valley Lanes.

The tournament was to be contested past the deadline for this week’s edition.

Plum finished seventh at last year’s WPIBL team event.

“Coming into the season, we talked about everyone just shooting their average or a little higher,” said junior Josh Christman, who finished the regular season second in Section 3 in average at 207.35 per game.

Freshman Franklin Mercurio finished in the top spot in the section with a 217.59 average.

“It’s a great feeling to be able to do so well for the team in my first year,” Mercurio said.

“There’s a lot of pride in representing your school.”

The WPIBL girls team tournament is set for Thursday at 3:15 p.m. at Sims Lanes in Beaver Falls.

Juniors Allie Dick and Talia Pilyih remained 1-2 in average after week 10 at 211.73 and 199.27, respectively.

“We’ve really worked well a team all year, and it’s paid off,” Dick said. “We’ve gotten contributions from everyone. We really feed off each other.”

The Plum girls are shooting to improve on last year’s fourth-place finish at the WPIBL team tournament.

“When one of us has a bad frame or throw, everyone is there to pick that person up,” Pilyih said.

“That support is important in a game.”

By winning the section titles and making the WPIBL team tournament, the Plum squads also automatically enter the Western Pennsylvania Regional Championships.

The team event is March 14.

The regional singles tournament is March 13, and Plum had a league-best 11 combined bowlers qualify for regionals — six girls, five boys.

A total of 74 boys and 74 girls bowlers from the WPIBL advance to regionals based on the top averages among the bowlers who rolled at least 21 games during the regular season.

The top 50 automatically qualify — the top six from each of the five sections with six teams and the top five from the other four sections with five teams.

There also are 24 wildcard spots for the remaining top averages, regardless of section.

Those who have qualified for regionals from Plum are Josh Christman, Mercurio, Dick, Pilyih, sophomore Sarah Kirkpatrick (175.77), freshman Megan Christman (174.91), senior Kristen Ankers (168.39), senior Bethany LaBertew (165.29), Jake Cubarney (191.42), sophomore Dom DelVecchio (189.70) and freshman Jackson Rogers (188.76).

The top 12 individuals and top six teams advance to states, set for March 20 and 21 in Ephrata.�

Michael Love is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach him at 412-388-5825 or at mlove@tribweb.com.

Michael Love is a Tribune-Review sports reporter. You can contact Michael at 412-856-7400 x8632, mlove@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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