High school senior 'strikes' a big reputation on the bowling lanes

August 31, 2017 12:06 PM

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. - School started in the Berkshires on Thursday and a senior at Monument Mountain High in Great Barrington has a lot to show from his summer vacation.

Tommy Hankey Jr. is most comfortable on the lanes. It seems the lanes can be anywhere, though. This 17-year old is soft-spoken, but when there are a ball and 10-pins, he gets loud.

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"It's just something that just comes out, cause as a person, I'm very quiet and collective. I stay within myself, but when I'm on the lanes, I just become very emotional. I just love the passion of winning," said Tommy.

The Teen Masters is his most recent trophy. He won it this month in Richmond, Va. Two years ago, he won the prestigious Junior Gold Under-15 title in Chicago. Those are just part of a collection of trophies and medals that decorate his house.

"I'm in the middle of the pack in terms of age and to be able to get through all of that talent, it just means so much," he said.

WEB EXTRA: Tommy Hankey Jr.

His parents, Sheila and Tom Hankey Sr., own Cove Lanes in Great Barrington.

"We love giving him our time and it's so worth it because all the traveling that we're doing every weekend is preparing him for the greatness he needs to be when he gets to college. It's all worth it," said Sheila.

"Not once do we have to say 'Tommy, are you going to go practice? Tommy, you need to do this or do that.' He just goes about his business and works hard at it," said Tom Sr.

Tommy’s parents say he started bowling when he was just 2 years old at Cove Lanes in Great Barrington. It was about age 13 when Tommy said 'I've got a pretty good knack for this.' He didn't think he'd have all these trophies in just four short years."

"This is not far beyond where I reached, just earlier than I thought I was going to get there," he said.

Tommy, known as "T2", is also known for his loud outfits, fireworks, patriotic and even mustard-colored pants. He has 25 perfect games and won a top regional tournament last year, one of the youngest to ever do so.

He runs junior tournaments, raising scholarship money. The scholarships he's earned will go toward Webber International in Florida, a top bowling program. He'll study business management next year.

"It's unbelievable, really at this point. Going into senior year, three national titles, starting to build a resume even more. College career's going to be absolutely wonderful. I can't wait for that," he said.


WNYT Staff

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