MADISON, Wis. --- The Tusculum University women's bowling team won both of its championship bracket matches on Sunday to finish fifth at the Warhawk Classic.
The fifth place showing continues to show the development of the TU bowling program, improving each week. Tusculum finished 13th in its inaugural event and followed with a 10th place showing before posting its first top-five performance ever.
The Pioneers defeated Lewis University 4-2 in a Baker Best-of-7 format and clinched fifth place honors with a 4-1 victory over Valparaiso University.
In the Lewis match, the Flyers won the opening game 177-158, but the Pioneers roared back with wins in the next three games scoring over 200 pins in each. Lewis won the fifth game by a single pin, 175-174, but the Pioneers closed out the victory with a 202-161 decision in the sixth games.
Tusculum jumped out of the gate against Valparaiso winning the first three games in convincing fashion, 182-149, 199-169, 211-181. Valpo won the fourth game 234-188, but the Pioneers sealed the win 214-171 to improve TU's record in Baker Playoff matches to an impressive 6-2 this season.
The Pioneers finished the weekend with an 8-5 mark to even TU's overall record at 19-19.
Tusculum opened Sunday with a tough match against 12th-ranked Central Missouri as the Jennies came away with a hard fought 946-929 decision. In that match, TU rookie Abbygale Hunt bowled a 212 to up her average in the tournament to 194.83 which was the seventh best of the 84 bowlers competing.
Raycine Mortensen finished with a 184.33 average which was 17th-best in the tournament, while Alexa Tieto (173.83) and Tacey Ballen (173.00) finished 25th and 26th, respectively. Erin Burkhart finished with 906 total pins including a team-best 222 against Central Missouri on Sunday.
Maryville (Mo.) won the championship by defeating runner-up Central Missouri 4-0 in the finals match. No. 13 Lincoln Memorial finished third while host Wisconsin-Whitewater placed fourth. Tusculum was fifth, followed by Valparaiso, Upper Iowa, Lewis, Aurora, Dominican (Ill.), Marian (Wis.) and North Central (Ill.).
Tusculum will close out the fall portion of its 2019-2020 schedule next weekend (Nov. 15-17) at the Stallings Invitational in Greensboro, North Carolina.