State Stories


2016 Boys Bowling

Bookmark and Share

A bevy of individual and team talent returns to the 2016 IHSA Boys Bowling State Finals at St. Clair Bowl in O'Fallon on Friday and Saturday, January 29-30.

That talent starts with Harlem High School junior Jacob Nimtz, who rewrote the state final record book last year en route to a record-breaking individual performance. Nimtz used two perfect 300 games in his 12-game series to tally a tournament pinfall of 3,011, not only setting a new record, but also becoming the first player in IHSA state final history to eclipse a 3,000 pinfall.

Nimtz’s amazing performance helped Harlem (12,641) place second as a team, as Hononegah (12,909) used its depth to rally past Harlem en route to the first team title in school history. The Indians now have their sights set on becoming the second program in state history to win two state titles (Andrew, 2005 & 2006) and have a great base with their top five scorers from last year returning. That group counts a trio of Top 20 finishers from 2015 among it, including junior Brandon Mooney, who placed third in the state last year (2,715), and senior Clay Coogan (11th, 2,643). Head coach Brad Sommer’s son, sophomore Nick, has also enjoyed a record-breaking regular-season.

Last year’s third-place team finisher, St. Charles East, earned a Sectional team crown this season, as the 2016 edition of the Fighting Saints are led by senior Cole Cartee (1,420 Sectional) and junior Dean Mudlong (1,344).

The three highest team Sectional scores in the state all came out of one Sectional this season, as Collinsville (6,795) edged O’Fallon (6,761) and Belleville East (6,726) for the crown at the Cahokia Sectional. Collinsville was led by junior Clayton Hartman, who was the individual medalist at the Sectional with a score of 1,540. O’Fallon teams senior Bradley Soloman, a Top 30 state finisher in 2014, with fellow junior Andrew Orf, who was the top scorer in the Panthers’ Regional (1,497) two weeks ago. Led by individual Sectional champ Cameron Crowe (1,433 Sectional score), Sandburg claimed the fourth and final Sectional team title, while Minooka hopes for another Top 10 finish (7th in 2015) after a strong Sectional showing (6,525) paced by junior Jon Studer (1,407).

Looking at the Top 10 individual finishers from last year’s state tourney, only three names return in 2016, and they just so happen to be the state champ (Nimtz), runner-up (Niles Notre Dame senior Tom Ochal) and third-place finisher (Mooney).

Whether it is a three-horse race in 2016 depends on if Nimtz returns to his record-setting form, but there are plenty of others eager to make a run at the individual state title, including LaSalle-Peru junior Nate Stubler (1,482), who was one in a handful of players who topped the defending state champ in Sectional action last week en route to the individual title at the Rockford East Sectional.

The final individual Sectional crown in 2016 resides in Chicago after Taft High School junior Thomas Green bowled a 1,465 to lead his team to state for the second straight season. Lockport senior Mike Pruchnik (13th, 2,623), Stevenson junior Richy Zenner (14th, 2,606) and Andrew High School senior Scott Taller (22nd, 2,589) all have state final experience after Top 25 finishes a year ago and will be names to watch on the leaderboard as well.

Speaking of the leaderboard, the IHSA’s Athletes With Disabilities division has had the same name atop it in each of the division’s first three years of existence. As the lone competitor in 2016, Mascoutah’s Fletcher Hopkins will make it a perfect four-for-four (click here to Fletcher in action).

14th year of State Series
14th year at St. Clair Bowl
4th year of Wheelchair Division


St. Clair Bowl (O'Fallon)
Host: O'Fallon High School


Friday, January 29
9:15 AM - Opening Ceremonies
9:45 AM - Start Round 1
1:00 PM - Start Round 2

Saturday, January 30
9:15 AM - Introductions
9:45 AM - Start Round 3 & Wheelchair Class
1:00 PM - Start Round 4
4:00 PM - Awards

Qualifiers & Lane Assignments

Live Leaderboard  -  Mobile

Friday Prelim Results

Saturday Finals Results

Day Pass-$10

Play Smart. Play Hard.

Take the PSPH pledge...

Twitter - @IHSAstate

Instagram - @IHSA_IL

Classic IHSA YouTube Video

Gear from Minerva

Photos from VIP

Souvenir Program

2016 State Series Results

Record Book & Past Champions