By Rob Kiser
Piqua Daily Call
Former Piqua bowler Travis Smith told Piqua senior Austin Jenkins two years ago that he expected him to break his school record for a two-game series.
And it should be no surprise that when Jenkins broke that record last week, it came at Capri Lanes in Dayton.
Jenkins rolled games of 254 and 252 for a 506 series in a win over Trotwood-Madison, breaking Smith’s school record of 489.
“Actually, Travis (Smith) had the record twice,” Piqua boys bowling coach Craig Miller said. “He rolled a 488 and a 489. He told Austin (Jenkins) he wanted him to break the record. I knew what the record was and I am pretty sure Austin did too, but I was not thinking about that. You can worry about records after the season. I was more worried about how the kids were bowling.”
And success at Capri Lanes is nothing new for Jenkins.
As a freshman, he rolled a 684 series at the Pirate Challenge to win the tournament.
“That is also where I rolled my 297 game (as a sophomore),” Jenkins said.
So, he had a good feeling when he got off the bus last week.
“I am not sure what it is,” he said. “I just feel really comfortable there. So, I was feeling really confident before I started.”
Miller said it is not the only place Jenkins has had success.
Jenkins has improved every year — averaging 180.2 as a freshman, 183.5 as a sophomore and 187 as a junior.
“Austin (Jenkins) is really comfortable on those synthetic lanes,” Miller said. “It is a different shot than you have here (at Brel-Aire Lanes). But, it is not the only place where Austin has bowled well. He has worked hard and I expect him to have a really big senior year.”
Miller knew it was going to be a good night.
“After his third or fourth practice ball, you could see he was lined up,” Miller said. “I told him to work on the corner pins. Typically, when he gets lined up like that, he will leave a lot of 10 pins.”
And Jenkins got off to a fast start.
“He was really on at the start,” Miller said. “I thought he was going to go even deeper (higher), but he had one ball in the seventh frame. Then he came back and finished strong.”
Jenkins was thinking even bigger in the second game.
“To be honest, I was hoping to get my 300,” Jenkins said.
He didn’t have the same start to the game.
“He started a little rough,” Miller said about the second game, but he came back and finished strong.”
And Jenkins had no complaints.
“After the game, he (Craig Miller) said ‘506, school record’. I will take it,” Jenkins said.
The Indians won the match 2,022-909. .
Nick Jess had games of 183 and 223 for a 406 series, while Shane Kerrigan had a 232 game.
Ethan Snyder added a 162 game. In the baker games Piqua rolled 165 and 160.
“It (the record) does give me confidence,” Jenkins said. “I think we are going to have a really good season.”
On Tuesday, he heads back to Capri Lanes for a match with West Carrollton, so there could be another record.
“We are bowling at Capri (Lanes) again Tuesday,” he said with a smile.
And like last week, if he is bowling well, one thing he won’t be thinking about is the record.
“To be honest, I honored it when Travis (Smith) said it to me,” he said. “But, I really hadn’t given it much thought since.”
But, as he has already proven, anything can happen when Jenkins steps on the lane at Capri.
Contact Piqua Daily Call Sports Editor Rob Kiser at (937) 451-3334 or firstname.lastname@example.org