Sandpoint Monarchs impress in Special Olympics bowling tournament

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(Photo courtesy of CHRIS PAINTER) Eliyah Allen holds up his second place ribbon.

SANDPOINT — Over 100 athletes competed in the North Idaho Special Olympics bowling tournament on Saturday, Nov. 16 at Huckleberry Lanes.

Bowlers from the Silver Valley, Coeur d’Alene, Sandpoint, Priest River and Bonners Ferry all took part in the event.

The Sandpoint Monarchs team had a strong showing as three of its athletes claimed first in their respective divisions. Those bowlers were Eli Jennings, Beverly Hudson and Shaine Parson.

Jennings and Hudson are the two youngest athletes on the Monarchs team but they weren’t intimidated while battling bowlers twice their age.

Parson was also the highest scoring bowler at the tournament.

Kevin Collins, Michelle Couldry, Mallory Gilchrist, Roy Burrow, Eliyah Allen, John Painter, Lee Hudson and Andrew Rogers all earned runner-up finishes in their divisions.

Third place results were awarded to Kathy Strandy, Tom Hornby, Mathew Fresh, Jacob Tifft and Jeff Chambers. Hayley Thompson, Brandon Beck, Caitlin Bayles and Thomas Dorenkamp all grabbed fourth place finishes while Bob Leichtman, Chelsea Dennis, Missy Laker, Austin Welker, Jackson Barth and Sahl Underwood each grabbed fifth. Bradey Scrimsher also claimed sixth.

Monarchs Special Olympics bowling coach Chris Painter said he was proud of everyone that competed.

“My hero, Bob Leichtman, who has to use three times the effort to bowl as his opponents, finished both his games with his smile and good humor never faltering,” Painter wrote in an email. “Tom Hornby was mistakenly placed in a division that averages 40 points, and more, above his and was able to place third. Bradey Scrimsher bowled both his games without outside help ... everyone did a fantastic job, athletes and volunteers.”

Special Olympics places athletes in competition based on gender, skill level and age.

“I would like to give a huge cheer and thank you to the Huckleberry Lanes staff,” Painter wrote. “They were awesome handling everything that came up quickly and efficiently and with good spirits. Also thank you to volunteers who helped monitor lanes, take scores and hand out ribbons: Julie Perchynski, David Barth, Tammy Shivel and Patrick Beck. Also thank you to LPC Marie Bayles and volunteer Val Olson for all your help.”

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