DALLAS — Vanderbilt put up consistent scores during the first day of the Lady Techsters Classic, but consistency gave way to a couple of opponent’s striking outbursts as the Commodores came away with three wins in five matches.
Vanderbilt is in first place based on total pin fall, 10 pins ahead of Sam Houston heading into Saturday’s play.
The Commodores defeated Southern, Tulane and St. Anselm, sandwiched in-between an opening loss to Sam Houston State and a closing setback to host Louisiana Tech.
The Dores recorded steady scores but never seemed to find the range despite four of its scores over 1,000 and the fifth being 981. Two of the team’s top performers – Paige Peters and Alyssa Ballard – were off their usual form early and were substituted for Amanda Naujokas and Kaylee Hitt while the other three starters, Caroline Thesier, Victoria Varano and Mabel Cummins, occasionally lacked the powerful spark that has characterized many of their recent tournaments.
“There are only eight teams here and the center has a different atmosphere with the smaller field,”Vandy head coach John Williamson said. “In our recent tournaments there was more of a motivating buzz so tomorrow we need to do a better job challenging ourselves.”
Williamson said they modified the lineup because, “we needed to do something different,” and he stayed with Naujokas and Hitt because they responded well.
The Louisiana Tech match was essentially decided when the Bulldogs went on a 245-228-255 spree in the middle of the contest.
“The La Tech lane pair was playing different and we had a tough time executing the shot that was required,” Williamson said. “We had a hard time throwing quality shots and it snowballed in the wrong way.”
The tournament will resume at 11 a.m. Saturday, 30 minutes earlier than originally announced. Play will be livestreamed for free on bowltv.com.