After going undefeated at the MEAC Southern Division tournament last weekend, the ladies of the FAMU Bowling team prove they are capable of winning.
In the two-day tournament in North Carolina, the ladies won all 10 games against North Carolina A&T, South Carolina State University, Winston Salem State University, Bethune-Cookman University and Norfolk State University.
Coach Novella Franklin said she has an excellent team and is very pleased with her players’ performance.
“I am very satisfied,” Franklin said. “I have dedicated athletes. I am very impressed and very happy. They are students first and are dedicated to their schooling. They are athletes second, and I tell them that they must juggle.”
Franklin, who has been coaching the sport since 2000, said the team practices four to five days a week. Franklin said she wants to see the team perform to the best of its ability in competition and in class.
“I want the team to win a MEAC (championship),” Franklin said. “What I would like is for the team to compete and win the NCAA. I also want the bowlers to have high APR scores, and I would like to have my athletes graduate with honors.”
The Rattlers squad has seven bowlers: sophomore Arleasia Carter and freshman bowlers Jazzmin Bingham, Ashley Melson, Marisa Moffett, Lynnetta Russell, Kellie Jones and Gina Davis.
Davis is optimistic about the season ahead of her. She said she has seen a change for the better.
“In the beginning of the season it was hard,” said Davis, 18, a Virginia native. “I was thinking it wasn’t going to turn out to be a good season, but we have learned to practice harder and longer and as a result, we improved. I have seen a major improvement. We are going to have a great semester.”
Bingham, a Michigan native, shares the same enthusiasm for the season as her teammate.
“I’m really excited,” said Bingham, 18. “We are going to pull together to win this. I think that as a team we are starting to gel. We are making a sisterhood instead of just rolling a ball down the floor. Our goal is to bring home the championship.”
Franklin said her bowlers are now on a different playing field. She also said with hard work and dedication, her bowling team can be unconquerable.
“The team is on a different level now,” she said. “As a coach, I try to make sure that my girls are consistent. I tell them which arrow to hit and I keep trying to ensure that they are consistent. This semester we are definitely working on consistency.”
The women’s bowling team has a home game on Feb. 8.
“In the past we didn’t receive a lot of support,” Franklin said. “However, that has now changed. We are now getting a lot of support and we’re challenging everyone to just come out and support us. It should be a real treat.”