Niles bowler competes in Junior Gold Tournament

Published 4:30 pm Tuesday, July 18, 2023

INDIANAPOLIS — A local bowler aims to make a name for himself on the national scene.

Conner Weston, a two-handed Niles bowler is both honored and excited to be one of 40  teens representing Michigan in the 2023 Junior Gold Tournament, the largest youth bowling championship in the world. 

The boys and girls tournament is divided into divisions of u12, u15 and u18. Bowlers must qualify in a United States Bowling Congress-approved tournament to earn a spot in the annual event, which consists of three days of practice and four days of competition – all on different oil patterns which are unknown to the competitors. 

It is considered to be one of the hardest events to qualify for and even harder to place in. 39 states sent athletes to the Junior Gold this year, with more than 3,000 athletes walking the field representing their states in its opening ceremonies celebration.

Weston was a four-year bowler for Niels High School and finished 29th individually in the MHSAA back in the winter. Conner is in the u18 Division at Junior Gold, his first and last time to participate as he will be aging out this year. He will compete against the top 1,300 bowlers in his age group in the nation. 

Conner’s favorite part of the experience so far was the party in the park put on by bowling brands and playing cornhole with the bowling pros. He is excited to be starting competition rounds next.  Conner will be scouted by college coaches during his four rounds played consisting of four games each day.

Next year, the tournament will be held in Detroit Michigan.