The Ellison High School boys and girls bowling teams each finished the 2014 season with success in San Antonio on March 30 at the Texas State Tournament.

Both teams advanced to the Elite Eight.

“Basically, we knew what was at stake,” said senior Jordan Garza, the Eagles top bowler.

“That made us work together as a team in San Antonio. We helped each other out. We kept each other calm.”

Besides Garza, competing for the Eagles were Christian Trinidad, Justin Pusateri, Jeffrey Stamp, Hunter Vann, Cameron Thomas and Derrick King.

“Some of us were pretty nervous about the whole event,” Garza said.

“But we just kept working our butts off and it paid off.”

Garza also competed in San Antonio as an individual. He bowled a 225, 216 and 234 to advance from the round of 64 into the Sweet 16.

In 2013, Garza missed the round of 16 by just four spots.

“I used my memory from what happened last year as a big motivator this time,” Garza said. “I was motivated to bowl more consistent.”

In the Sweet 16, Garza was a No. 15 seed competing against the No. 2 seed.

In the best-of-three series, Garza won the first two games by rolling a 254 and 227.

“Overall, I think I did pretty good in this tournament,” Garza said. “I’m satisfied.”

Of the Lady Eagles performance, Garza said, “They worked as a team really well and they kept picking up their spares. They did a great job.”

The Lady Eagles were led by sophomore Samantha Kriner.

“It felt good to finish in the top eight,” she said. “It was our second year in a row to make it to the final eight, but this year was better than last year because our effort was better.”

Kriner’s Lady Eagle teammates were Hayley Brooks, Donna Skinner, Ceasia Saxon, Marjerie Castro, Brianna Walker and Brigette Ayers.

“We supported each other real well in San Antonio,” Kriner said. “We came together as a bowling family.

“And next year, we’ll do even better.”

Contact Allan Mandell at or 254-501-7566​ and read his blog at

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