Cambridge-Isanti’s adapted bowling team had two individuals honored by the state. Junior Bryce Tinnel won the boys singles title, while senior Hunter Carpenter won the Russ Bakko Most Outstanding Bowler award for his leadership on and off the lanes. From left is coach Steve Tischer, Tinnel and Carpenter. Photo by John Wagner

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Cambridge-Isanti High School’s adapted bowling team had a blue-ribbon day at the MSHSL state tournament, which was held virtually on May 13.

On the lanes, junior Bryce Tinnel won the boys singles title in the cognitive impaired division with a pinfall total of 464.

“It was a surprise,” Tinnel said of the title. “But I had a really good day.”

Indeed he did. Tinnel, who carried a 42 average into the event, rolled a 102 and a 78 in the competition. Combined with his 142 handicap, Tinnel finished with that 464 total that beat his nearest competitor by 23 pins.

“He bowled his two best games of the year on that day,” said Cambridge-Isanti adapted bowling coach Steve Tischer. “He bowled crazy-good.

“When he found out he had won, he was so excited, because it was so unexpected. He knew he had bowled well, but to get first in the state was a huge accomplishment. He was so excited.”

The fact that he won a state title is still sinking in for Tinnel, who is the son of Kelly Tinnel.

“I have some people who have talked to me about it, and my friends still talk to me about it,” he said.

Off the lanes, Cambridge-Isanti senior Hunter Carpenter received the Russ Bakko Most Outstanding Bowler Award from the Minnesota Adapted Athletics Association.

The award is presented annually to a senior adapted bowler who has competed at a high level, shown good sportsmanship, and shown positive leadership.

“The award Hunter won was for his behavior and actions at the bowling lanes,” Tischer said. “He tries to be a leader, and he treats people well. He’s one of the most loving, caring students I’ve ever had on the bowling team. He supports the other kids; he goes out of the way to make it a good day for the other kids.

“He helps me in my adapted developmental phy-ed class, and he helps in the lunch room. He’s always willing to help, and he tries to make everyone’s day a better day – and not just the kids, but the staff as well.”

One of the nomination letters Carpenter received echoed that sentiment, adding: “Hunter cares deeply about others feelings and what is going on in their lives. He constantly worries about his friends, teachers, and family members, and he will be the first one to put a smile on their face when they are feeling down or having a difficult day. Hunter is also known for wanting to help with students that are very physically challenged.”

The senior said has two goals for every competition.

“I try to get turkeys, but I try to cheer everyone on,” he said. “I just want to get my teammates excited, and I want them to be happy.”

Carpenter said he was surprised and excited to receive the award.

“I thought it was really cool,” he said. “Being my last year, it was a great way to end the year.”

Carpenter, who is the son of Marshall and Sarah Carpenter, is someone Tischer said is a key member of this year’s team.

“We saw the leadership that Hunter showed on the team all season long,” Tischer said. “As a senior, he’s going to be hard to replace.”

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