by darren reese
SMYRNA - Greeneville High School senior Garrett Nunn finds himself in familiar territory following the opening day of the TSSAA state individual bowling championships.
Nunn made it through the first two rounds of the tournament at the Smyrna Bowling Center Thursday afternoon, and for the second consecutive year was one of six finalist to advance to today's championship round.
Nunn was the No. 6 seed in last year's finals and ended up finishing fourth in the state. He was the six highest qualifier again yesterday.
"Exactly the same position," Greeneville head coach Johnny Painter noted. "Garrett faces an uphill battle, but having been in this situation before, he feels good about it."
"It was an exciting day for him. He was excited, then he was worried when it was so close. Once he realized he got in, I think he was relieved more than anything."
Nunn turned in a four-game score of 933 in the opening round, which featured the top 72 individual bowlers from across the state. The Greeneville standout was in sixth after that round as well, and the top 24 moved on to the afternoon session.
Another Greeneville senior, Tyler Logenbach just missed out on advancing, finishing in 26th with an 813 total.
Nunn bowled a 184 in his first game, but answered with 245, 246 and 258.
The scores dropped dramatically across the board in the afternoon as the lanes were prepared with a different oil pattern.
Nunn's scores were 175, 133, 195 and 156 in the second session, but that was still good enough to keep him in sixth.
He had a 1592 pinfall count through the two rounds. Kamron Doyle, a freshman from Brentwood, leads the way with a 1787.
"They used what they call a 'Scorpion' pattern in the afternoon, and it was much tougher," Painter explained. "It features a lot of oil, and doesn't allow the ball to get a lot of traction."
"Bowlers who throw a great big hook with a lot of curve, it won't let it do that as much."
Today's round will have each finalist bowl one head-to-head game against each of the other five.
The pin totals from yesterday are carried over, and the results from each of today's matchups will be added to that. Bowlers are awarded a 15-pin bonus for winning an individual match.
After today's individual competition is done, the team portion of the state championships will get underway.
The Greeneville boys will be competing in that after winning the Region 1 championship last week.
Painter hopes the experience Nunn and Logenbach gained in the individual tournament will translate into success for the entire team.
"I think Tyler and Garrett learned a lot from the individual portion today," Painter said. "The pattern that they bowled on this morning is the same one the team competition will use."
"Hopefully what they learned will spill over to the younger kids."