Devils fire up play in the alleys, rinks

Hinsdale Central bowling programs and hockey club look to keep making progress


Last updated 11/21/2023 at 3:47pm | View PDF

Winter sports have blown in like snow off Lake Michigan, and the competition is heating up as we deliver part one of our Hinsdale Central season preview.

The boys and girls bowling teams are looking to get off to good starts, while the hockey club is skating into the second half of its schedule. Here are the coaches' thoughts on their respective 2023-24 squads.

Boys bowling

First match: Nov. 6 @ Fenton (V lost 2,069-2,213)

Last year: 4-10, 8th place in regional

Head coach: Alex Hipskind

Seasons as head coach: 22

Number of varsity members: 12

Team strengths: All of the boys are a really nice group of young men. They are enjoyable to work with and help each other out. Most are in the same boat in terms of their experience, so they help each other a lot.

Areas for growth: We lack a lot of experience, so I am hopeful that all of them will improve. I'd like to see all of them, especially the younger guys, improve overall by the end of the season. Every bowler could improve on all aspects of their game, no one is ever perfect. The great part about these guys is that they are willing to listen and improve.

Key players: Seniors William Berger, Benjamin Dynis, Joseph Gianatasio, Peter Hester, Freddy Horton, Grady Hyland and Liam Kowalkowski.

Season outlook: I hope to see individual improvement. It would be great to advance out of regionals and sectionals as a team, but that will be a challenge. But if each guy can improve that would be something really rewarding for us.

Girls bowling

First match: Nov. 27 vs. Downers North

Last year: 1-8, 8th place in regional

Head coach: Paul Parpet

Seasons as head coach: 9

Number of varsity members: 7

Team strengths: Our girls are very detail-oriented and they're always working on their skills. They pay attention to the details. It's like anything else, it takes repetition.

Areas for growth: Our (roster) numbers are down a little bit, and we bowl against other teams with players that bowl much more in the off-season than we do. We have what I call "seasonal bowlers," so we really have a to close a big gap to close in readiness. We try to emphasize focusing on the process and controlling your aim and your follow through, because you can't always control the outcome. You should never say it was a "bad" shot. Instead just that you wanted it to be better.

Key players: Senior April Wu was a sectional qualifier last year. She'll be one of the top bowlers in the conference and really has a good opportunity to qualify for state this year. Seniors Xi Xi Liu and Adele Groom will also be important to our success this season.

Season outlook: We expect to be competitive. The West Suburban is a very good bowling conference. We're not going to win the conference with strong teams like York and Addison Trail. We'll be middle of the pack.


First match: Sept. 29 @ Neuqua Valley (V lost 1-7)

Last year: 26-10-3, lost in round 3 of state championship

Head coach: Spencer Anderson

Seasons as head coach: 2

Number of varsity members: 20

Team strengths: I've liked the way our senior leadership has taken it upon themselves to lead, not only on the ice, but in the locker room as well. The younger guys are getting some experience playing with teammates who understand a little bit more about the game at this level. It shows in the way that they play on the ice.

Areas for growth: We have eight sophomores on the varsity roster, and you can definitely see the size discrepancy in some games.

But they're holding their own against those bigger teams. We've had some injuries and I've had to make subtle

weaks to the lines.

Key players: Seniors Nate Anderson and Will Read have stepped up their scoring and creating more offense for us. Junior Will Romberger is leading the charge with his offense and ability as well as his defensive prowess. I've converted junior Jack Crabb from defense to forward and he is leading our team in points. We have a young core with sophomores Derek Daze, Zach Kunitz and Eddie Yu - players to watch as they get a little older and stronger.

Season outlook: There's a lot of parity in the league this year. My hope is that we finish at the top by the end of the regular season and that our kids are ready for playoffs. We're learning from our mistakes to become a more well-rounded team. This is a young team with a good group of leaders. They're close-knit, and close-knit teams can do special things.

Author Bio

Ken Knutson is associate editor of The Hinsdalean


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