Baltimore, MD - One week after earning the highest national ranking in program history, the SHU women's bowling team posted a 7-4 match play record at the James Brown Invitational hosted by Morgan State. Jackie Carbonetto (Blauvelt, NY) finished 11th in the field by averaging 211 in individual games on the second day of the tournament. The Pioneers dropped back-to-back heartbreakers in bracket play, falling 4-3 in a pair of best of seven baker matches to round out the tournament in eighth place.
Sacred Heart (58-23) did not come out of the gates quickly but was able to grind out a 702-674 victory over Howard to start the tournament in day one's four game baker format. SHU found its stride in game two and rolled its way to the most impressive win of the weekend, a 793-743 decision over #6 Central Missouri. The Pioneers then ran into a red-hot #8 Nebraska, who went undefeated in the first two days of competition, as the Cornhuskers hung an 891-815 loss on the red and white. Sacred Heart had a bye in game four and finished the first day of the tournament with a 3-1 record after a triumph over Coppin State.
The Pioneers got a 222 from Nicole Trudell (Coventry, RI) in the opening game of the second day but #7 Vanderbilt fired on all cylinders to knock off SHU, 1131-955. Sacred Heart started to roll from there and eclipsed the 1,000 plateau in each of the next two contests, cruising to victories over Howard and Cheyney. The Pioneers faced a stiff test from Fayetteville State, who received votes in the latest national poll, in game four. Jacqueline Willy (Clarence, NY) supplied her highest score of the afternoon with a 209 as SHU earned the 20 pin victory, 948-928. Carbonetto saved her best for last as the junior ripped off a 269 in the final game and the Pioneers would need every mark in a tight 1022-1005 win over #13 Delaware State.
Sacred Heart raced out to a 3-0 comeback in its first match of bracket play versus #12 New Jersey City, taking each game by at least 30 pins. However, the Gothic Knights were able to mount a comeback and grabbed the momentum with scores of 244 and 214. New Jersey City edged the Pioneers in the last two tilts upend SHU in the seven game series. Sacred Heart claimed back-to-back verdicts to earn a 3-2 edge in a see-saw battle with #12 Delaware State in the final clash of the James Brown Invitational. However, the Hornets came out on top to hand SHU another tough 4-3 loss and send the Pioneers to an eighth place finish overall.
The SHU women's bowling team remains in prime position to make a trip to the NCAA Tournament and will continue its push in two weeks at the third Northeast Conferece Meet of the 2011-12 season.