When Olathe South High School’s Mackenzie Mitchell learned that she would have to wear a restrictive brace through her entire senior bowling season due to an off-season knee injury, she was not sure what to expect.
Turns out it added even more motivation for her to succeed.
Mitchell finished the season with the second-highest average in the Sunflower League and was selected Sunflower League Bowler of the Year prior to a fourth-place finish at the state meet. Overall, she finished with a 209.1 average for the season.
“I am beyond ecstatic,” said Mitchell, The Star’s All-Metro girls bowler of the year. “I was really scared that (the brace) was going to bother me and affect my bowling, but I got over it and worked with it. That was something I had to deal with, but it was awesome knowing that I was still capable of doing what I had and that I had my girls behind me.”
Mitchell also led Olathe South to a third-place finish at the state meet, which was the highest in program history.
“I don’t care if she was crippled and couldn’t walk, she would still bowl,” Olathe South coach Bill Lowe said. “She has a big desire, and it isn’t just a desire for herself. She really helped everyone this year and, even though this isn’t about her, she has really worked a lot with the other girls to help them and make them comfortable.”The Star’s All-Metro girls bowling team
Allie Brachtenbach, Olathe East, junior.
As the lone state qualifier from Olathe East, Brachtenbach came on strong at the end of the season to win the Sunflower League meet and her regional meet. She placed 13th at the Class 6A state tournament and had a 202 average for the year.
Nicole Edwards, Shawnee Mission North, junior.
The three-time state qualifier finished fifth at the Class 6A state meet this season with a 633 series. She ranked third in the Sunflower League with a 205 average.
Mackenzie Mitchell, Olathe South, senior.
She was voted the Sunflower League bowler of the year and finished with a 209.1 average this season. She placed fifth at the Class 6A state meet with a 635 series and led the Falcons to a third-place finish as a team.
Mackenzie Saulnier, Olathe Northwest, senior. Saulnier, the Class 6A defending state champion, fell to a 15th-place finish at state this season, but medaled for the third consecutive year. She led the Sunflower League with a 210 average.