Southern Lanes in Alexandria is the site on Thursday for the first full-team showdown between perennial Region 5 powers Simon Kenton and Campbell County.
The unbeaten Simon Kenton boys (3-0) wrested last season’s regional team title away from the Camels (2-1), defeating them in the final.
The Pioneers have won a pair of regional crowns, and a state championship in 2013, under coach Dave Hampton.
“You always remember who you bowl in the region,” Hampton said.
“I would expect those matches (against Campbell County) to be pretty exciting.”
The Simon Kenton girls eliminated the Camels and ended their year with a regional tournament first-round win, and finished Region 5 runner-up.
The Pioneers (1-2) already have a 4-3 victory this season over Campbell County (1-2).
Both Simon Kenton bowling teams advanced to the 2015 state tournaments.
Each Campbell County squad won the region and made back-to-back state tournament appearances in 2013-14.
The Camels’ girls won three straight regionals until last year.
The Campbell County boys have been region champs or runners-up and state qualifiers four years in a row.
Thursday boys’ and girls’ matches start at 3:30 p.m. on the Camels’ home lanes.
“I would think it’s going to be a tight and close match, but I’d like to win by more than we did the last time,” Pioneers girls’ coach Jeremy Zeigler said.
“The girls are starting to build a lot of confidence, and showing the foundation we’ve been building on in practice.”
Both Campbell County and Simon Kenton have had two weeks off since their last previous matches.
Simon Kenton fine-tuned things at Monday’s practice at Super Bowl Bellewood in Newport.
“I’m hoping our mindset Thursday is in the right area,” Zeigler said.
His veteran squad is led by Michelle Thomas, sixth at the 2015 regional singles tournament.
She has a 168 per-game scoring average with a team single-game high 183.
Fellow seniors Erica Thomas, eighth at the regional tournament, and Vanessa Cheesman, ninth at the regional, carry averages in the 140s.
Junior Savanna Corwin rounds out the top four.
Campbell County, under the direction of first-year coach Justin Mason, counters with a younger squad, including high-average roller, seventh-grader Kaylee Hitt (132), and sophomores Aleah Staggs and Alyssa Neeriemer.
The Simon Kenton boys are led by freshman Jonathan Cummins, senior Spencer Becknell and junior Andy Osterhage.
Cummins averaged 211 last season and was Region 5 singles runner-up and 17th at state, where the Pioneers reached the team quarterfinals.
Campbell County features defending boys’ regional champion, freshman Austin Hitt (206), and senior Jake Barton, seventh at the regional.
Hitt was seventh at state after beating Simon Kenton’s Cummins in the regional final.