Teams representing Fort Leonard Wood military units gathered Jan. 28 on the lanes at Daugherty Bowling Center as the 2019 intramural bowling season got underway.
“Right now, locked in, we have 11 teams, which is pretty close to what we had last year,” said Bryan Kaolowi, Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Sports assistant.
Each week during the regular season, teams will bowl against each other to see who can win the best of three games.
Kaolowi said one change from last year’s format is that teams no longer have a fifth player as an alternate.
“They have four players on each team instead of the five like last year. So, it’s a little different,” he said. “Everything else, as far as the rules are concerned, is pretty much the same.”
Teams will bowl at 6 p.m. Mondays for the next 10 weeks. Those who complete the season will be eligible to compete in the annual two-day Commander’s Cup Bowling Tournament.
Among this year’s teams, one key difference is the makeup of the defending champions. The 2nd Battalion, 48th Infantry Regiment, which went undefeated and claimed the Commander’s Cup Tournament in 2018, returns with none of the members of that championship roster.
When asked if he felt any pressure to live up to last year’s performance, current 2-48th Inf. Bn. team member Justin Sherman replied, “None at all.”
“Last year’s team was at a whole different level,” Sherman said. “We lost a lot of people because they PCS’d. Most of the (team members from last year) were Reservists, while most of the people coming in are active duty.”
One unit already eyeing a return to the tournament is the 14th Military Police Brigade, which had the highest point total on the tournament’s second round after falling behind in the first round last year.
“We definitely want to make sure that none of our teammates are TDY during the Commander’s Cup. That’s what hurt us,” said Curt Schroeder, 14th MP Bde. team member. He said this year, his team will focus on “more consistency.”
Schroeder added, overall, having the opportunity to bowl helps build teamwork while having fun.
“It’s about camaraderie and doing something outside of work,” Schroeder said. “We spend so much time together at work training the future Army, so it’s great to come out, whether it’s bowling, softball, basketball or whatever sort of sport, and increase that level of camaraderie within the unit.”
After the first week of competition:
— The 554th Engineer Battalion led all teams in total pin count, knocking down 2,371 pins for as many points. They played unopposed with their opponents receiving a bye;
— The 14th MP Bde. defeated the 31st Engineer Battalion Spartans 2,276 to 2,010 points;
— The 43rd Adjutant General Battalion defeated the Medical Department Activity, 2,033 to 1,619;
— The 3rd Chemical Brigade, 102nd Division, defeated the 2nd Battalion, 48th Infantry Regiment, 1,853 to 1,368;
— Combat Training Company defeated the 252nd Military Police Detachment, 1,699 to 1,584 points;
— The 58th Transportation Battalion scored 1,962 points. They were also unopposed.