COKATO – The Dassel-Cokato adapted bowling team begins its sixth season this year, under the tutelage of founder and head coach Vinne Pokornowski.
Pokornowski reports that the team has 11 bowlers this season, with two senior captains, three juniors, three sophomores, and one bowler each in 7-9th grades.
Below is the adapted bowling team roster:
• Dennis Swenson, 12, captain
• David Harper, 12, captain
• Robin Cates, 11
• Joel Harju, 11
• Ben Orton, 11
• Jeffry Hendrickson, 10
• Mari Lindberg, 10
• Zada Hanson, 10
• Annika Wanha, 9
• Josie Utecht, 8
• Emma Jo Tessman, 7
Pokornowski has high expectations for his two senior captains. Harper, in his first year, has had great results early on, while “Swenson throws the ball so hard we hope he doesn’t shatter all the pins!” said Pokornowski.
Cates, Harju, and Orton complete a very solid junior class for DC. Cates and Harju have been on the team the longest of any students, since 2014.
Orton has been the Chargers’ most electrifying bowler the last couple seasons, holding the school record highest raw score of 190.
Harju, meanwhile, holds the school record for the highest average (99), and most pins in a season (2180).
Pokornowski said he and his staff expect continued improvement from the sophomore class of Hendrickson, Lindberg, and Hanson, as each bowler has improved every year on the team.
The most improved bowler on the team, said Pokornowski, is freshman Annika Wanha. Two years ago, her average was 29 for the season; so far this year, her average is 52.
The team is rounded out with two new bowlers: 8th-grader Josie Utecht, and 7th-grader Emma Jo Tessman. Both have been doing great so far in the season, and everyone enjoys having them on the team, said Pokornowski.
“Our team is very competitive, which helps them push each other to become better,” said Pokornowski. “It’s nice that they are able to compete with each other, while still encouraging each other and building friendships. It will be exciting to see how each of these bowlers does this year!”