MADISON TWP. — Coming out of his sophomore season, Madison bowler Collin Hickman felt like he had learned a lot.
He had started out as the Trojans’ anchor bowler, but chose to move up to the number 4 position.
Before the season started, his grandfather, Ken Beevers, died and Hickman dedicated this season to him at the funeral. This season he feels he has achieved that goal.
“We’re doing well this season. Personally I’m fine, I’ve had my good days and I’ve had my bad days like all of us,” said Hickman. “I think he would be proud of me for how I bowled today and how I kept my team in the game.”
Hickman started it off with a blast, at the Onsted Wildcat Blast-Off at Ten Pin Alley Invitational at Ten Pin Alley in Tecumseh. He fired a day-best 256 in the qualifying rounds en route to a sixth series, knocking out a pair of Adrian bowlers, Kyle Neuman and Landon Zick, in the quarter-finals and semi-finals to reach the final.
In the final against Clinton’s highest-placed bowler Joe Bohnett, Hickman broke the lead in the fifth frame and led 24 after seven frames. Bohnett made a comeback in the 10th, but Hickman closed the door in a tie before being hugged by his mother during the post-game ceremonies.
“(Hickman is) a guy I trust the most and he’s a guy everyone on the team looks up to,” said Madison Boys coach Rene Ramirez. “I am proud to have him on the team. With the passing of his grandfather, it really gave him some motivation to get up and make his grandfather proud, and I believe he really did through the Blast To win off, go to another tournament where we came in second, and then here today at our own tournament.”
He kept up the momentum, helping the team to fourth place in qualifying with 1,842 pins on Saturday morning at his team’s annual Baker Bash tournament at Lenawee Recreation.
Hickman helped the Trojans team make a comeback against top-seeded Sturgis, coming back from 26 pins behind in the first game of the two-game semi-finals to win by 17 pins (350-333) and himself in the place in the final against Adrian.
They wore it to the final and took a lead after the first game, but in the end couldn’t hold it against the Maples and one of Hickman’s friends in Zick, who happens to be Adrian’s anchor bowler. Still, the performance was impressive for the team and Hickman, who suffered a bit of a hurt leg prior to the game.
“I’m really good friends with Landon and he and I have a little bit of rivalry,” said Hickman. “Before the game I told him not to lose because he told me that during the Blast-Off tournament. We all had good shots and bad breaks, it could have been a better game, but it is what it is. the pins today.”
The potential that Hickman and the Trojans have has got him and Ramirez excited, as Hickman has the goal of a state run for himself and his team.
“I know I have a good team behind me and I personally have everything I need to make it,” Hickman said. “I shouldn’t let my mental game get to me.”