Boys bowling: Chesterton’s Nate Sipe earns P-T bowler of the year
By Steve T. Gorches firstname.lastname@example.org March 28, 2013 11:46PM
Updated: May 1, 2013 2:00PM
Five pins is a really good improvement from one bowling season to the next, whether you’re talking about league play or high school competition.
A 10-pin jump is stellar. Fifteen pins … just phenomenal. Twenty pins … enormous.
And then there’s Nate Sipe. The Chesterton senior was a pretty good bowler in the high school ranks as a junior, averaging 197 with some nice series (526 high), but admittedly inconsistent.
One year later, he has the second-highest average in Northwest Indiana with 219 (seventh in the state) with the high series in the state (536), top region finish at state (11th) and a Post-Tribune Boys Bowler of the Year honor, too.
So what was the difference? Was it an equipment adjustment? Not really, though he’s known to have a little too many bowling balls lying around the house.
“I’ve got like 65,” Sipe said, not joking.
And no, his family doesn’t have a garage to store those 65 balls. They’re in his modest sized bedroom, taking up more space than the bed or dressers.
Nope, it wasn’t a change in equipment. It was just about fun.
“Mentally I just tried having fun and not worrying about anything,” he said. “I talked to people at meets to take my mind off bowling and any pressure.”
And it worked. Not only did Sipe have a great regular season, helping the Trojans win the conference title, but when the postseason arrived with a tougher sport shot oil condition, he was even better. The average wasn’t as high as the regular season, of course, since it’s more challenging, but Sipe still did better than anyone else.
That’s not rhetoric or hyperbole. He averaged 206.8 on the sport shot during the postseason, starting with a 695 series in the sectional.
“I slowed down my approach and arm swing a little, and it helped me get more revs (revolutions) on the ball,” Sipe said, explaining the physical side of his massive improvement from the previous season.
The individual sectional was just the start for Sipe. He helped Chesterton win the team sectional, then he kept rolling in singles with all the way to the state finals where he placed 11th— best of any Northwest Indiana boy.
Sipe also attributed team success to his individual success.
“Our chemistry was pretty good,” he said. “In tournaments we did well when I pumped everyone up.”
That emotional boost was part of Sipe’s new attitude that helped raise his average 22 pins.
“I really think the mental aspect helped more than the physical part, because I was more relaxed,” he said.