Dennen Cuthbertson, Assistant Director for Athletics Media Relations
DALLAS, Texas – The top-seeded Arkansas State women’s bowling team swept fourth-seeded Stephen F. Austin 2-0 in the 2018 Southland Bowling League Championship match and earned the league’s automatic bid to the 2018 NCAA Tournament Sunday at USA Bowl in Dallas, Texas.
The win means A-State (87-34) will make its 11th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament as one of 10 teams in the expanded field. The 2018 NCAA Women’s Bowling Championship will be held at Tropicana Lanes in St. Louis, Mo., April 12-14.
“I’m very glad to get the automatic bid and this tournament gives us great experience because we used the new NCAA Tournament format,” A-State head women’s bowling coach Justin Kostick said. “We were down in several of the matches and you can’t simulate that type of pressure except in a tournament like this.”
The Red Wolves began the match with a 962-944 win in the traditional match with Leah Glazer bowling a 220, while Jadee Scott-Jones and Jordan Richard chipped in with a 208 each. The team then went on to post a 923-900 victory in the five-game Baker match to sweep the Ladyjacks.
Richard was named the Most Valuable Bowler for the tournament, while Glazer made the All-Tournament team, which was her second of the campaign. This is Richard’s sixth all-tournament award of the season and her first MVP honor. A native of Tecumseh, Mich., Richard now has a school-record 19 all-tournament honors, while the MVP award is the seventh of her career, also a school record. She has been named the Most Valuable Bowler at two Southland Bowling League Tournaments and was named to the All-Tournament squad in the other she competed in.
“I am very pleased with the way we performed, especially after having to spend 13 hours in the bowling center yesterday,” Kostick continued. “SFA is a very quality team as well so it was great to be able to get another chance at them after they beat us earlier in the event.”
The NCAA Women’s Bowling Committee will select a field of 10 teams – six automatic qualifying teams, which A-State is now one of, and four at-large teams. Teams will be ranked, based on available selection criteria, with the top six being placed in the championship bracket. The remaining four teams will play in opening round matches to determine the final two teams that will compete in the championship.
Selections for the 2018 National Collegiate Women’s Bowling Championship will be announced on Wednesday, March 28, 2018 via web stream on NCAA.com.
Fans can keep up with the Arkansas State women’s bowling team by following the squad on Twitter (@AStateBowling) and by liking the Arkansas State Women’s Bowling page on Facebook.