New Bowling Coach Talks Turkey, Hambone, and Splits as Season Begins

Posted January 28, 2016 / Last updated February 3, 2016

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(File photo) Peyton Hidalgo led the team scoring against Shaw for a win on March 12, 2015.

(File photo) Peyton Hidalgo led the team scoring against Shaw for a win on March 12, 2015.

Jesuit’s bowling team kicked off the season with a jamboree on Jan. 14 and a district game on Jan. 21 under the direction of a new coach, Mr. Todd Bourgeois, an alumnus from the Class of 1988.

The 2016 team consists of seniors José Cuscó and Peyton Hidalgo; junior Peyton Schillaci; sophomores Christian Edwards, Mason French, Trent Greco, and Gerard Miller; and freshmen Adam Francis and Grant Greco.

Only three members are returning from last year’s team: Cuscó, Hidalgo, and Miller. Last year’s Blue Jays finished the season in the bi-regional tournament with each bowler averaging over 200 per game. This year’s young team is getting off to a slow start in the 2016 season, overall averaging about 162 per game

The Blue Jays finished the jamboree at AMF All-Star Lanes in Kenner with a 1-1 record, beating Holy Cross 5-3 and losing to Brother Martin 8-0. Miller led the team in the jamboree with a 211 game. In the season opening district match, the Jays fell 20-7 to Archbishop Shaw. Hidalgo led that game with a 220.

Coach Bourgeois aims to work with the bowlers to develop better technique, “better arm swing, better tempo, better footwork, and better releases.” And he’s taking it a step further. He is approaching his new team with the philosophy: “If they learn today, they can get better tomorrow.”

The team goal this year is for each bowler to develop a comprehensive understanding of the sport of bowling, both on and off the lanes, Bourgeois said. He wants to impart the “necessary knowledge needed to create a winning formula.” This involves having a greater understanding of their equipment and the lanes while focusing on the mental aspect of the game.

Bowling beginners may read terms like “lily,” “turkey,” “hambone,” and “splits” and think of a table setting with flowers and a four-course meal. But these words take on new meanings in the bowling alley. Bourgeois will teach his bowlers via classroom training, “Tech Talk,” and trivia. “It’s a lot of fun, and the boys are learning in the process.”

The team is looking forward to a tour of a bowling alley in the coming weeks, featuring “a look behind the lanes so that they can see where the ball goes, how it comes back, and how the machine automatically resets the pins for them.  They are very excited about that.”

The Blue Jays will travel to Baton Rouge to bowl in the 2016 Coca-Cola Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 30. Then they return to take on the Bonnabel Bruins on Monday, Feb. 1 at AMF All-Star Lanes in Kenner.