Longtime Friends Cheer Each Other on During Bowl-Off


Seniors Emrel Woody and Erin Parrott.

The Singles Regional Tournament, held this year at the Super Bowl Bellewood, is one of the most important matches during the year for the Bowling Birds, as it allows them to qualify for the exclusive state match. The top four bowlers from each region would be able to progress to state.

The Birds bowled very well throughout the day with sophomore Abby Bach and seventh grader Alex Bach already qualified for state. At the end of the final match, seniors Emrel Woody and Erin Parrott ended up tied for fourth with 842 pins each, meaning they’d have a bowl-off for state.

The girls first met at Walt’s Center Lanes through a Saturday bowling league, but didn’t become good friends until they played together in 7th grade through the HHS bowling team. As a matter of fact, both girls joined the team in 7th grade and their love for the team as well as their friendship has continued to grow over the years.

Bowling has been a big factor in both girls’ lives. Woody began bowling in 2nd grade in a Saturday league at Walt’s Center Lanes. Parrott began bowling when she was nine and was part of the same league. Both girls, to this day, still bowl in the Saturday league and are even on the same team.

Woody says, “Bowling is like a home to me. I’ve been used to it for so long and I don’t ever want it to go away.  Bowling, especially on the high school team, also means family. The girls and I are just like a tight-knit family.”

When Parrott and Woody first discovered they were in the top four, they initially felt excited as they both knew they both had a chance to make it to state. However, once they realized they’d be in a bowl-off, the mood changed to scared.

Being close friends, Woody and Parrott weren’t scared for themselves necessarily, but one another, as they knew whoever lost wouldn’t be heading down to state with the other.

Woody remembers, “I looked over at the score counter and I heard the words, ‘There was a tie.’ I could just hear. Then, I heard the words, ‘bowl-off.’ My first thought was ‘noooooo’ as I knew we both couldn’t make it.”

During the bowl-off, they played a full 10-frame game, alternating who bowled and who cheered.

As the bowl-off progressed, the girls went back and forth supporting the other. Though the typical mood at a bowling match, especially during a bowl-off, is competitive, both girls were able to keep the mood positive and knew that no matter who won, they both deserved it.

Parrott said, “We both knew we wanted to go to state, but we are best friends and no matter what I wanted to support my team.”

At the end of the bowl-off, Woody ended up winning by a slim margin, as both girls bowled a tremendous, high-scoring game. However, she couldn’t have done it without the support of her team, especially Parrott.

Woody says, “Our friendship is special because I’ve always had [Parrott] by me. We’ve had lots of opportunities to get close and she’s always been there for me.”

Throughout bowling together, Woody and Parrott have created lots of memories, including sharing a hotel room at state, going to Vegas together over the summer, and being “injury twins” during sophomore year, as Woody had a broken pinkie toe and Parrott had skinned her finger.

Parrott says, “Our friendship is something I will cherish forever because she is always there for me and I am always there for her.”

Both girls currently plan on attending NKU for college and aim to bowl on the bowling team, continuing their close friendship and expanding their love for bowling.