ARLINGTON – A special facility, a special field. That is what awaits the Sam Houston bowlers as they get set to compete in the Prairie View A&M Invitational this weekend.
The Bearkats will join a field of 12 teams, all ranked in the top 25, including eight of the top 10 teams in the country. They will all compete at the International Training and Research Center in Arlington. The ITRC is also the home of the National Bowling Hall of Fame.
“Prairie View has always done a good job with this event and it’s even better this year with every team ranked, which might be a first for us,” said head coach Brad Hagen. “It is a unique experience, because Saturday they will have a dinner for the teams and then everyone will get a chance to tour the Hall of Fame.”
Joining the fifth-ranked Bearkats will be No. 1 Nebraska, No. 2 McKendree, No. 3 Arkansas State, No. 4 Vanderbilt, No. 7 SFA, No. 8 Maryland Eastern Shore, No. 10 Fairleigh Dickenson, No. 12 Sacred Heart, No. 17 North Carolina A&T, No. 19 Louisiana Tech and the 25th ranked hosts.
Seven of the teams have combined to win the last 14 NCAA championships.
“It’s rare to find a group of teams in one tournament like this with so much history in the sport,” Hagen said. “This will be a test for us for sure and will give us a good feel for what we can expect if we are lucky enough to make it back to another NCAA championship.”
Action will begin on Friday at 12:15 with five sets of five-game baker matches. Saturday will feature five traditional team games with one more on Sunday morning. At 9:50 Sunday the best of 7 baker game bracket play will begin.