There is something about the City League tournament that gets the North girls bowling team going.
A disappointing 2009 regular season ended with three losses, yet North finished second in the league tournament and finished second in the state tournament.
In 2008, the Redskins won the CL tournament title and won Class 6A two weeks later.
North coach Mike Long doesn't have to say much now that the City League tournament is here again — at 2 p.m. Saturday at West Acres Bowl. His girls, who won 7 of 8 duals, always know this is the time to get it going.
"We seem to have success at this time of year, we just seem to always gel at this time," Long said.
North is led by two talented and experienced senior bowlers. Nesa Hubbard and Ally Johnson finished second in 2007, first in 2008 and second in 2009.
Hubbard, who finished 10th individually last year and ninth in 2008 at the City League tournament, is the defending Class 6A champion. Johnson won Class 6A in 2008.
"They provide so much in the leadership role," Long said. "Two dynamite ladies, they really work hard to get the other girls involved."
North will have to overtake Heights, last year's City League tournament champion. Heights beat North by more than 200 pins on Jan. 21.
"The girls are much more relaxed now, not as nervous, and they know what they have to do," Long said. "Somehow, they always pull it out someway. They never give up."
For the boys, Bishop Carroll (6-2) comes in with the best record.
At the City League tournament, Carroll has finished better than fifth only once, last year's runner-up, in 10 years.
"That is attributed to the bowlers we have in Wichita," Carroll coach Jim Nance said. "We've won a regional, we've won a state title, but our boys haven't won City. Year in and year out there are great bowlers in the City."
Brice Logan and Collin Maes lead Carroll. Logan has the top average in the City and Maes averages a consistent 600 series.
"We didn't really know what to expect this year, but Brice and Collin have given great guidance and leadership," Nance said.
AV-CTL — Maize is one of the favorites in the Divisions I-II tournament at Seneca Bowl on Saturday. Maize coach Dave Walker is looking forward to the tournament.
"We've got quite a few teams that are really good and can get hot," Walker said. "We all kind of beat up on each other through the season and now it's going to come down to who has the hot hand."
The Divisions III-IV tournament is at Prairie Bowl Saturday in El Dorado.