By Liz Nolan, Contributing Writer
NORTHBOROUGH – A family bowling outing five years ago struck a huge interest for Northborough teen Kieran Reeve-Patel. That interest has since grown into a competitive passion for the 16-year-old Northborough resident and sophomore at Clearway School in West Newton.
Kieran’s school is small and doesn’t have its own bowling team, so he sought out alternate ways to compete and joined a bowling league. Along the way, he has met people who have coached him and encouraged him.
“I have found what I am good at and what I enjoy,” he said.
Over the April school break, Kieran took lessons at the Kegel Training Center in Florida.
“Kieran is a young man, who loves bowling and who has a strong desire to master the sport,” said United States Bowling Congress Gold Certified Coach Rick Wiltse at Kegal Training Center in an April 23 email.
Kieran has adopted the two handed, left hand style and aspires to bowl in college and later on the professional tour. He currently bowls solo, but is willing to try pairing up with someone for a doubles competition.
He practices a lot, and credits his coaches along the way for all he has learned about the game, and his mother Ruth, who he can usually persuade to drive him to the alley for a two-hour bowling practice session. Currently, he practices and works with coaches twice a week for two hours at Wonderland in New Bedford.
Kieran said a good bowler knows which ball to choose and where to stand. Bowling lane oil patterns are also essential to learn.
“Oil patterns make the bowling balls do unpredictable things to make it difficult to strike,” he said. “You really need to work out what is going to be effective.”
The oil on every lane can be different and the bowler needs to adjust strategies based on the pattern. The bowling ball speed, spin and direction can be affected.
Kieran’s bowling games don’t always go as he hopes, but he stays positive.
“Just because one frame or one game doesn’t go well…you have to keep working at it,” he said. “You need to have confidence in yourself. I have been up against some very good players, and it is easy to think you will lose before you have played against them. I have surprised myself and won!”
He anticipates more participation in tournaments as COVID-19 travel restrictions are lifted. He will be competing this summer at the Teen Masters USA in Detroit, Michigan and Junior Gold Championships in Indianapolis, Indiana.
“I do get nervous, but excited too and have to try to focus on each shot,” he said. “When I make a good shot, strike or spare, it is really satisfying.”