Tonawanda News — Hannah Mussell does two things: bowl and work.
“When I’m not at work, I’m trying to bowl, trying to get better, trying to figure out different ways of approaching it,” she said. “Just helping myself be a better bowler.”
The senior and co-captain on the Tonawanda girl’s bowling team has been a huge part of the Warriors undefeated season, averaging 176 pins a game and acting as a major leader away from the lanes.
Warriors coach Gina Maduri called Mussell a great captain and praised her maturity.
“I think she’s really consistent,” Maduri said. “Since I started doing this three years ago, she has bowled the same. She’s never had a huge slump where she’s unfixable or in a huge rut — she’s been pretty steady the entire time I’ve been here.”
Mussell started bowling with her family when she was a little girl and has stuck with it. She said she never really got into any other sport, and she always loved bowling.
Maduri says because Mussell has been around the game for so long she sees things the other girls don’t, and she tries to convey her knowledge to her teammates. Maduri also said Mussell is always willing to help her teammates out, whether it’s a bowling tip or something else to help lift their spirits when the team is going through tough times.
This season, there haven’t been many tough times for the Warriors. They’re 9-0 and Mussell has her eyes set on sectionals and an appearance at states.
She is putting a lot of weight on the end of this season, not just because it’s her last as a high schooler but also because she doesn’t plan on bowling in the fall.
When she’s not bowling, Mussell works at McAuley’s Residence Nursing Home in Kenmore as a kitchen aid. She helps prepare food and serve it to residents as well as washing the dishes. Eventually, Mussell wants to become a nurse, and McAuleys will be paying for her schooling at Erie Community College in the fall as long as she maintains a 3.0 GPA.
With those pressures on her, Mussell has decided not to bowl in college because of the rigorous travel schedule.
While she plans to bowl in leagues, she will miss representing her school when she bowls because of the team element. She is focused on ending the season strong and putting on a strong showing at sectionals and a possible appearance at states.
“States would be like the icing on the cake,” Mussell said. “That would definitely make not bowling for a college a little less of a hard blow.”
Maduri has come to rely on Mussell away from the lanes as well. Maduri says she is her eyes for things she doesn’t notice around the team, something Mussell confirmed.
“I try to keep everything in order but not control everything,” Mussell said. “I try to keep everyone organized and together. If everyone starts having trouble I try to pick everyone up and help them out or give some good advice.”
Bowling has been part of Mussell’s life for most of her 17 years. She has bowled with her family and even met her boyfriend through the bowling team. With the end of her high school career in sight, Mussell is focused on getting the most she can from herself and her teammates before the end of her scholastic bowling career.Follow @tonanewssports on Twitter for complete high school sports coverage.