Special Olympics bowlers are sending their best.
The lanes were a little quieter last night in league play as their teammates Scott Malmo, Shane Legros and Meghan Wheatstone are in Prince Edward Island representing team Ontario at the National 5-pin Competition this week.
Gary Socholotuk, a coordinator for Kenora’s Special Olympics says nationals is not unfamiliar territory for the league.
“This is the second time in a row that we’ve sent athletes to the Nationals. The Olympics happen every four years, so this is great,” he says.
The athletes qualified after regionals in Thunder Bay and then provincials, and Sokolotuk adds that the community has been a huge part in sending the athletes to P.E.I.
“In order for the athletes to go, we needed to raise funds. The community was incredible in helping us in a short period of time. The S.O organization chipped in, we had local clubs and foundations donate, and the Polar Plunge helped out, too! We’re thankful for the community for pitching in and helping us make it to nationals,” he says.
Vicki Hawkins is also a Special Olympics coordinator and she highlights the team.
“I think their enthusiasm is so positive. We have a wonderful group of Special Olympians. They all care for each other and they root each other on. So I think that’s very special, too,” she says.
In last night’s play, Brian Fournier led men with the high score of the week at 219, which was followed by his younger brother Kevin at 187. Cory Landseidel followed closely at third with 178.
Diane Vivian led the women with 136, closely followed by Jody Derouard at 134 and Brittany Malmo with 124.
Bowlers in Kenora also have a special message for their teammates.
“Hi Meghan, Scott and Shane from your Monday night bowling fans. All of your supporters are wishing you great success.....Go Show Them! Enjoy your adventure!”, they say.
The National Bowling Competition runs until May 20 in Charlottetown, Summerside and Tyne Valley, P.E.I.
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