LAUREL, Md.- The North Carolina A&T women's bowling team posted a 3-2 record in Day 2 of the Frederick Underwood Lady Bulldogs Classic at the AMF Laurel Lanes on Saturday afternoon, for fourth place with 8,259 pins and an 8-2 record for the tournament.
A&T head coach James Williams said the team's performance puts them in a strong position for the tournament final on Sunday.
"I'm excited about tomorrow. Sitting in forth definitely gives us an opportunity to finish in first place, through the brackets," he said. "It's not going to be easy."
The Aggies must defeat the University of Alabama at Birmingham, earn a victory over the loser of the Sam Houston State/Bethune-Cookman match before then trying to defeat the winner of the same matchup.
"It's doable," said Williams.
In team head-to-head action, the Aggies (24-14, 10-6 MEAC) dropped their first two matches before sweeping the rest of the competition in the afternoon.
"I still see signs of rust from the month layoff, but the team continues to grow and learn together," Williams said. "I'm just waiting for all of it to click at one time."
Freshman Emily Strombeck had a strong day for the Aggies, posting a 204.4 average for sixth overall in the tournament. It's the best tournament average she has posted this season. Junior Courtney Crook, senior Amber Brown and freshman Najah Owens also ranked among the Top 25 bowlers after Saturday's action.
A&T lost a close 889-873 match against UAB to open the day as Strombeck bowled a 208 to help lead the team. The Aggies then took on National Tenpin Coaches Association No. 19 Bethune-Cookman and lost 1106-968. Against the Wildcats, Owens bowled a season-best 202.
A&T then dominated Chowan 921-632, bested Virginia Union 931-773 and defeated Coppin State 872-728. Strombeck bowled a season-best 225 against Virginia Union, and ended the day with a 213 game against the Eagles. Freshman Najah Owens also has a pair of 200-plus games, as did junior transfer Courtney Crook.
The Aggies will cap off the tournament with bracket matches on Sunday.
"I'm hoping that the team can catch fire during the baker matches tomorrow, like they did at the end of day one," Williams said.