Young bowler wins state title in unsanctioned sport


Tyler Seeley recently won a state championship but hardly anybody noticed.

Seeley, a junior who attends Legend High School, is a bowler who captured the boys Colorado High School Bowling Federation state championship on Feb. 16-17 at AMF Belleview Lanes in Englewood.

You won’t find Seeley’s name in the Colorado High School Activities Association’s record book or a story about him on CHSAANow.com since bowling is not a CHSAA-sanctioned sport.

“A lot of people don’t know or care for that matter about bowling,” said Seeley. “But it’s my passion so I am really excited.”

In 13 games during the individual competition, Seeley advanced through cut-downs into bracket play. He averaged 213.9 for 13 tournament games. In the head-to-head finals when a bowler can’t afford to miss a spare, he averaged 212.4 a game

“I bowled pretty well,” said Seeley, who took home a trophy and scholarship money which went into his account. “I won so I bowled well enough. I had to bowl real well because I had some tough competition.”

He is starting to draw interest from colleges that have men’s varsity bowling teams.

Seeley bowled on the East Denver co-op team and his coach was David Kling. Tyler’s victory was special for Kling, which is another twist to this story. Kling’s son, Trevor, was an avid bowler. Even after he was diagnosed with cancer, he bowled competitively. He passed away in October 2017 at the age of 12.

“He’s (David Kling) a good friend of ours and we do a lot outside of bowling with him,” said Seeley. “He really helped me and gave me a lot of good advice in coaching. It was real special to me to win as well. He (Kling) volunteered his time for all of this.”

Youth coaching is a way for Kling to repay the bowling committee.

“When my son was sick and passed away, the bowling community helped me and my family a lot, financially, mentally and the whole nine yards,” said Kling.

“They were there for me. Some of my son’s best friends were bowlers. Some of my best friends are bowlers and I’m a bowler, so it was natural for me to pay back and keep coaching the kids,” Kling continued. “Tyler’s win was rewarding. What I went through with my son, he never actually won any tournaments.

“He took second a lot. One thing I wanted to see him do was win, and being able to coach someone to a high level and win, in the back of my mind that was extra special because of my son.”

David Kling has organized three Trevor Kling Memorial tournaments and the first one is for juniors on March 16 at AMF Monaco in Denver. All the prize money goes back into scholarship funds for the bowlers.

New Littleton football coach

Zeric Martinez has accepted the challenge of rebuilding the Littleton football program as athletic director Chris Enzminger announced that Martinez is the school’s new head football coach.

Martinez, who was head coach at Sheridan for two seasons, was an assistant at Valor Christian and Mountain Vista before taking the job at Littleton. He is also president of the Highlands Ranch Mountain Lions Pop Warner Football Organization.

He takes over a Class 3A Lions program whose last winning season was in 2009. Littleton has gone 19-70 over the past nine seasons and that includes a 5-5 campaign in 2014. The Lions have won just two games over the past three seasons.

Jim Benton is a sports writer for Colorado Community Media. He has been covering sports in the Denver area since 1968. He can be reached at jbenton@coloradocommunitymedia.com or at 303-566-4083.

Jim Benton


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