Gering bowler awarded scholarship
     2016-01-29      By Allie Mekolon    editor@geringcitizen.com
Allie Mekelon/Gering Citizen Gering senior Chris Bartow concentrates on taking down the pins at practice on Monday with the Cat-Dog Bowling team. A second-year bowler on the team, Bartow earned a bowling scholarship to Hastings College. 
As people file into the bowling alley, the team players begin to focus more on the game they’re about to play. The adrenaline kicks in, the lanes turn on, and it’s time to bowl.

The feeling is familiar to Gering senior Chris Bartow, a member of the Scottsbluff/Gering High School bowling team who recently earned a scholarship to attend Hastings College.

“It’s like nothing else. With practice, you start to walk with some moxie and get confident. You’re pumped. The lanes turn on and it’s go time,” Bartow said.

Bartow claims he has been bowling pretty much since he’s been walking.

“I’ve been bowling since I was 1, and this is my second year on the Cat-Dog bowling team. I’ve bowled on leagues for as long as I can remember and competed in some very competitive tournaments,” Bartow said.

Of course, this comes as no surprise as Bartow’s family owns the local Bowl Arena in Gering where Bartow regularly takes practice. This works to his benefit, providing extra practice time, a pro shop when he needs one, and moral support.

“I don’t think I would have as great of a drive for the sport,” Bartow said.

Bartow’s family also plays a big role in his bowling career, as he is a fourth-generation bowler.

“Bowling has always been in my family. Having that support and family members who have attended national tournaments able to give me advice helps a lot. They would never let me quit,” Bartow said.

Outside of his family, Bartow said coach Logan Lund has been a big influence.

“He said I had what it took so I trusted him and tried out,” said Bartow.

Bartow also has been involved in football and soccer; however, the two do not compare to bowling.

“You can be good at soccer and good at football, but in bowling, it’s 90 percent luck and 10 percent skill. You can only control what happens from the approach to the foul line. Everything after that is luck,” Bartow said.

Bartow has many accomplishments throughout his time bowling, from scoring his first 279 at the age of nine, to placing eighth at the state tournament his junior year of high school.

Bartow also finished a 7-4 regular season with the rest of the Cat-Dog team, and will bowl at the district competition on Saturday, Jan. 31 in Columbus.

Coach Lund recognizes all the hard work Bartow puts in.

“He’s worked hard for the two years I’ve had him. He’s one of the most coachable kids I’ve come across, and he deserves what he has,” Lund said.

Bartow’s most recent accomplishment is receiving the highest athletic scholarship the Hastings College bowling team has to offer. He plans to study a major in the field of criminal justice in the fall.

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