T'nia Falbo poses with her All-Tournament Team award.

Jan. 30, 2012

READING, Pa. - In the largest NCAA women's bowling tournament in the country, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) rallied from a slow start to capture the crown and with it their first event win of the season. The Hawks used a masterful day three to beat No. 2 Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) twice to take the title.

In just her second tournament as head coach, Kristina Frahm, pushed UMES from a slow day one start where the Hawks went 3-3 and were in fourth place, to a solid day two, where they jumped the standings to finish second and set up a title run on the final day.

"I knew we could bowl better than we started," said Frahm. "We went three and three, but still had a good pinfall total. This season we are stronger in team games than Bakers so day two played to our advantage and we managed to move up the standings and got in a position to win."

After opening day one with a win over MEAC rival No. 13 Norfolk State (802-755), UMES was edged by No. 1 Valparaiso (797-790). They quickly rebounded to top No. 6 Vanderbilt (797-768) but then dropped a pair to FDU (770-721) and No. 3 Sacred Heart (843-797). They closed day one with a 773-666 win over No. 17 Saint Peter's.

Day two was when UMES got hot, picking up four wins, but more importantly the highest pinfall of the day to move into second place. They opened with a 1046-995 win over Long Island a 901-813 win over North Carolina Central. The host Golden Bears of No. 15 Kutztown would upend the Hawks in the third game, 1058-964 and the down swing would continue with UMES dropping a 1020-981 decision to No. 19 Adelphi. Despite the two losses, UMES had a solid pinfall total in both matches and would finish the day with two more wins over No. 10 New Jersey City (1020-915) and No. 16 Monmouth (949-849).

T'nia Falbo (Greensburg, Pa.) was the star of the day, amassing a 1,268 pinfall over six games and was one of just five bowlers in the 263 woman field to average over a 210. Falbo earned All-Tournament Team honors with her 211.33 average and had a 236 in the win over Long Island. She tallied five of her six games above the 200 mark.



Anggie Ramirez (Bogota, Colombia) was also solid, averaging a 203.8 over five games. Ramirez rolled a 170 in the first game and sat the second but when she reentered in the third game she was hot. Ramirez rattled off a 217, 207, 215 and 210 to pace the her Hawks.

Megan Buja (Rockford, Ill.), Victoria Jones (Baltimore, Md.), and Mariana Alvarado (Leon, Guanajuanto, Mexico) were also solid. Buja averaged a 191.5 with a 223 against Long Island, Jones averaged a 191.6 with a 212 against Adelphi, while Alvarado averaged a 185.83 and posted a 212 also against Long Island.

In total, the Hawks amassed a 5,861 total pinfall on the day and were just 198 pins out of first but comfortably in second with a 97 pin lead on third place Valparaiso.

Headed into the final day of bracket play UMES would face off with top-seeded FDU again. But this time the Hawks wasted little time, disposing of the Knights 4.5 games to 1.5 games, tying in the third game. After earning the win they got the bye match, facing the last place team, Medaille, and cruising to a 4-0 win. After FDU topped Sacred Heart 4-3, a rematch was in order. This time the Hawks flew by the Knights even quicker, defeating them 4-1 and claiming their first tournament title of the season.

"It feels great," said Frahm, it's my first one as a coach, but more importantly it's our first win as a team. We needed this, we are the defending champions and it is good to prove to teams that one year later we can still go out and win a tournament, especially the biggest one of the season."

UMES is back in action this weekend in Arlington, Texas at the Prairie View Invitational.

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