Jett Cosby is just preparing to enter the seventh grade at Royster Middle School, but is competing for the second time this week in a national tournament.
Jett and his On A Mission teammates are bowling at Astro Lanes, Madison Heights, Mich. in the Junior Gold Championships, which will be followed by individual competition early next week.
The team is scheduled to bowl Thursday and Friday and the individual competition begins on Monday.
The six-member 12 and under team, also including an alternate, qualified for Junior Gold with a first place finish in the USA Bowling event in Wichita. A year ago, the team based at Mission Bowl, Olathe, qualified for nationals in Dallas with a nice margin.
This time around, it came down to a last shot by the youngest bowler against the top-seeded team.
The On A Mission bowler came through for an exciting finish and a celebration for qualifying for nationals.
“Hopefully, it’s cooler than here,” Jett said of the Detroit area.
“We burned up in Dallas,” his mother, Maria Hernandez, said.
Jett started bowling in leagues at the age of four. His dad, Donnie Cosby, bowls all year-round.
Jett has been steadily improving his average from the 130s, the 140s and the 150s. He said his highest game was a 229.
Jett participates in leagues and practices at C&H Lanes.
Donnie has an impressive 194 average and once nearly rolled a perfect 300 game, settling for a 289.
“Most of the time, Mom’s a spectator, but sometimes she jumps in, too,” Jett said.
“I’m spending $200 on a bowling ball instead of a softball bat,” Maria said.
Jett noted he will take seven balls to the national event, then decide which five to use.
The youngster loves winning trophies, including one that is pictured and is almost as big as he is. “I won a trophy and it was up to here,” Jett said, motioning to his upper body. “And it was marble.”
The award was for the Chris Barnes Classic — Barnes happens to be Jett’s favorite professional. Dad Donnie announced on Twitter that Jett had won and Barnes made a video congratulating him on the victory.
Trophies, patches, etc. are not the only rewards.
Prize money that goes into a Yes Account scholarship fund comes with some event accomplishments.
“He doesn’t complain about the money he can’t see,” Jett’s mom said.