Deer Park’s Adam Zimmerman has been hampered by a wrist injury he suffered in December that caused him to miss about a month of bowling with his Webber International University team in Babson, Park, Florida.
But the injury didn’t prevent him from participating in the Team USA Bowling Trials, as he fought through the pain to earn a roster spot on Junior Team USA for the second straight year.
“I took some Advil each day and taped my wrist a certain way,” Zimmerman said. “My mindset was that nothing was going to stop me from at least giving me the best chance to make that dream come true.”
As happened last year, he finished fifth at the trials, which were held Jan. 3-7 at the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Zimmerman, who turned 20 in October, bowled a total of 30 games over five days and averaged 206.13.
“After bowling my wrist did hurt,” he said. “But I knew I had to keep my mind on what the overall goal was.”
The top four bowlers 20 years old and under earned an automatic spot on the team, meaning that Zimmerman would have to wait on a committee’s decision to see if he would be chosen for one of the final two berths.
“I was more nervous than confident,” said Zimmerman, a junior studying sports business management at Webber. “Just like last year, even though people told me they felt I was going to be picked, I still wasn’t sure.”
After some deliberation, the committee selected Zimmerman as a member of the team once again.
The trials consisted of 350 youth, amateur and professional bowlers split into male and female divisions. Each bowler threw six games a day on five different oil patterns.
“It is very difficult to adjust to the different lane patterns each day,” Zimmerman said. “It’s also very tiring mentally, which is why it’s hard to perform at such a high level consistently throughout the week.”
Six other bowlers previously qualified for the 12-man team based on their performance at the Junior Gold Tournament last July. Zimmerman, who was the Newsday Boys Bowler of the Year in 2015 and 2016, will join them at a week-long camp in Dallas this summer.
“The camp is kind of another tryout in a way,” he said. “You have to go through a lot of bowling drills and show what you can do. When you make the team, one of the first things they tell us is that everything matters.”