Wichita State women win 10th national title at 2021 Intercollegiate Team Championships

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WYOMING, Mich. - The Wichita State women claimed their first Helmer Cup in more than a decade after winning the 2021 Intercollegiate Team Championships in a thrilling match against North Carolina A&T.

The championship match came down to the final frame of the deciding game in the best-of-five Baker format, with Wichita State junior and National Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association Most Valuable Player Madison Janack delivering three strikes to shut out North Carolina A&T, 247-217, for the 3-2 victory.

The win was the first at the ITC for the Shockers since 2009 and served as the record-extending 10th national championship for the women's program.

The title match of the 2021 ITC aired Tuesday on CBS Sports Network.

The finals of the 2021 ITC and Intercollegiate Singles Championships were held May 8 at the Spectrum Entertainment Complex. The women's ISC telecast aired May 11, with Delaware State's Katie Robb winning the title. The men's ISC show aired May 18, with Calumet's Pete Vergos collecting the win.

The men's ITC telecast will air on June 1 at 8 p.m. Eastern and feature Wichita State against St. Ambrose.

The Wichita State and North Carolina A&T women exchanged victories through the first four games to set up the excitement in the finale (182-158, 194-202, 211-169, 178-200). In Game 5, the Shockers delivered three consecutive strikes, starting in the seventh frame, before handing the ball to Janack for the 10th.

North Carolina A&T, which was looking for its second ITC title, rolled four consecutive strikes in the middle of Game 5 and posted a strike in the ninth frame that forced Janack to get two strikes and one pin to lock up the title.

"I knew I needed to get two strikes, so I made sure to follow my process and keep my composure," Janack said. "I kept telling myself it was just me and my target. This is what we've been training for all season, and to be able to deliver to win the title is a dream come true. I've pictured this, dreamed of this and wanted it for so long. I wouldn't want it any other way, especially with this group of girls and the coaches we have. It's incredible."

The 2021 championship team for Wichita State featured Janack, Sierra Ciesiolka, Madisyn Hansen, Addie Herzberg, Sydney Hollinger, Sarah Klassen and Olivia Komorowski.

The win also was special for Wichita State head coach Holly Harris, who was leading the team in postseason play for the first time, after taking over the helm to start the 2019-2020 season. Harris competed for the Shockers from 2010-2014.

"I had been looking forward to this moment since 2010," Harris said. "I wondered when I started coaching if I would feel as much a part of it, and you definitely do. I had pictured that hug with Coach L (Wichita State Director of Bowling Mark Lewis) for years, and to see those dreams come true are really special. This team fights and doesn't stop. They stayed loose the whole week, and even when we were down during some of the matches, they were focused on finding a way to win and move on. They're really resilient and pretty tough."

Janack also was named the women's ITC Most Valuable Player. She was joined on the all-tournament team by North Carolina A&T's Cameron Strombeck, Mount Mercy's Cassidy Courey, McKendree's Hope Gramly and Louisiana Tech's Allie Leiendecker.

Teams competing at the Spectrum Entertainment Complex earned their spots at the ITC through four sectional qualifiers held throughout the country in April.

Teams had to place in the top four after 40 Baker games in their respective sectionals to advance to the ITC.

All teams competing at the ITC rolled 12 Baker games at the Spectrum Entertainment Complex to determine seeding for the double-elimination bracket. All bracket matches leading up to the finals featured a best-of-seven Baker format.

Wichita State qualified seventh overall, and North Carolina A&T was the No. 11 seed for the bracket. Both teams went undefeated in match play to earn spots in the finals.

The Shockers bested Wisconsin-Whitewater, 4-2, to earn their spot in the title match. The Aggies, who won the 2015 ITC, defeated 2017 champion McKendree to advance, 4.5-1.5.