Track & Field Holds 'Bowling Classic' in Tempe
TEMPE, Ariz. – The inaugural LSU Track & Field Bowling Classic was not without its share of controversy as Team “Just Get It Done” captained by assistant coach Bennie Brazell posted its team score of 1,307 pins in the championship match to take team title in the event held Thursday at Tempe Lanes.
Brazell’s squad scored a dominating victory over the 1,199 pins by Team “The Reality of the Situation Is” captained by assistant coach Debbie Parris-Thymes in the championship match.
Six teams featuring 12 participants for each team competed for the inaugural LSU Track & Field Bowling Classic title as the two finalists advanced to the championship match after posting the top cumulative team scores in the qualifying round. Team “Just Get It Done” advanced with a score of 1,208 pins while Team “Alls You Gotta Do Is” followed in second place with 1,201 pins in qualifying.
After scoring 1,307 pins in the final, Team “Just Get It Done” would have lifted a championship trophy at Tempe Lanes if one was available to hand out as part of the inaugural event.
Joining Brazell for the winning squad were jumper Kyron Blaise, sprinter Jonique Day, pole vaulter Jaora Johnson, thrower Brieanna Kennedy, javelin thrower Philip LeBlanc, middle distance runner Charlene Lipsey, trainer Casey Maxwell, manager Zach Mire, distance runner Philip Primeaux, sprinter and hurdler Cassandra Tate and middle distance runner James Thurn.
“I’m proud of our team for going out there and getting the win,” Brazell said following his team’s victory. “The whole team came together as one with one heartbeat today and got the win. There’s nothing else that needs to be said. It was a great team effort and we went out and took the victory today.”
Brazell, who also served as the tournament director, found himself embroiled in controversy following his team’s win as he was accused by many in attendance of stacking the teams in his favor before the event.
And while making a trip to the lanes ahead of the teams before the start of the competition, witnesses said Brazell might was seen oiling the lanes in such a way that compromised the integrity of the tournament.
Team “Alls You Gotta Do Is” captained by head coach Dennis Shaver filed a protest that was later denied by the same tournament committee chaired by Brazell. Shaver’s team finished in dead last place out of the six teams competing Thursday after posting a cumulative score of 957 pins in the qualifying round.
“We live by our team name. We get it done no matter what it takes,” Brazell said. “They’re just upset that they were dominated today by a better team today. People can say whatever they want to say. At the end of the day, I’m proud of our guys for the way they competed today. I think everybody had a great time for our first time doing this. That is most important, other than my time pulling out the victory.”
Many of the Tigers and Lady Tigers were impressive in their bowling performance on Thursday during an exciting competition as a number of personal bests were set as part of the event.
Senior javelin thrower Aaron Moore led the way with a strong score of 168 pins in the qualifying round in leading Team “Do What You Did To Get Here.” Thurn was also impressive while firing a prelim score of 165 pins to lead Team “Just Get It Done” into the championship match. Brazell followed with his score of 152 pins for the qualifying round en route to a spot in the final.
Senior All-American pole vaulter Rachel Laurent was the top scoring Lady Tiger during Thursday’s event as she fired a score of 150 pins for Team “Alls You Gotta Do Is” during the qualifying round.