Michigan High School Interscholastic Bowling Coaches Association

News article about Hall of Fame inductees

Hall of Fame Inductees 2021


Since the inception of Michigan high school bowling in 2003, the Michigan High School
Interscholastic Bowling Coaches Association annually selects the most prominent
individuals to the MHSIBCA Hall of Fame. Representatives can include coaches,
athletic directors, bowling alley proprietors, and even news writers. To be inducted into
the Hall of Fame, individuals must have been involved with high school bowling for at
least 14 years and must be nominated by a member coach of the MHSIBCA.
This year, the Coaches Association inducted two esteemed coaches into the Hall of
Fame. Both resumes reach nearly two decades of coaching along with a handful of
conference titles. The hard work of Byron Center head coach Walter Dyer and Mercy
High School coach Vicky Kowalski came to fruition and cemented them with the highest
honor a coach can earn with the MHSIBCA.
Walter Dyer- Byron Center High School
An 18-year coaching veteran, Coach Dyer’s numbers speak for themselves. In his
career, Dyer has led the way to seven conference championships and four regional
championships. In 2017 he even earned the title of Boys Dream Team Coach of the
Year. In that same season, Dyer guided an individual bowler in David Northouse to take
home a singles state championship. Over the years, Dyer traveled to eight state finals
with the boys and four state finals with the girls. His best team showing also came in
2017 with a third-place finish. Personally, Dyer has 23 perfect games along with eight
800 series.
“It’s an honor and very humbling. It was very exciting when I got the email saying that I
was elected to the hall of fame. It was something that I didn’t really think about a whole
lot throughout the years of coaching, but the last few years it was something that came
up a little bit and we were very excited to be nominated and elected.”
Coach Walter Dyer had many people to thank in his speech for helping him reach this
“I want to thank the athletic directors at Byron Center, Brady Lake, Blake Mueller, and
Marcia Schierbeek. I also want to thank Mike Marks, the proprietor at Spectrum Lanes,
and my wife and family.”
Most importantly, Dyer wanted to thank his assistant coach who he knows extremely
well- his son Derek. Derek sat alongside his father for four years while bowling in high
school, and remained by his side ever since. For the past 13 years, Derek has helped
lead Byron Center to multiple conference and regional titles. Walter labels his son Derek
as a hall of famer in his book.
Vicky Kowalski- Mercy High School
After 19 years of coaching high school bowling, Kowalski finally joined another hall of
fame. Previously, she already held membership in the Croatian Catholic Union Hall of
Fame and the Michigan Interscholastic Golf Coaches Association Hall of Fame, and
now she adds another to her resume. It’s been a long time coming for Kowalski who
joined the committee to help start high school bowling.
Kowalski spoke, “I’ve been involved since the beginning, I was on the committees with
the MHSAA to get it started, I was on the JV committee for the JV states. I ran a
regional for the first ten years of high school bowling, so I’ve been in from the ground
floor, and it’s nice to be recognized for all that hard work.”
Coach Kowalski had support from the Mercy Athletic Director, Nancy Malinowski from
the very start. Malinowski knew she came from a lone line of bowling, so she went
straight to her. Kowalski’s uncle Bill Bunetta resides in the USBC Hall of Fame. Bunetta
joined the hall in 1968 for both his bowling and coaching prowess.
Her family makes up the group of coaches at Mercy. The group includes her husband
Mike, daughter Cathleen and son-in-law Chris. The group has led Mercy High School to
ten Catholic League Championships and one regional championship. They guided the
program to three state finals, with eight bowlers heading to the individual state finals
including one runner-up finish who just happens to be Kowalksi’s daughter, Cathleen. In
2004, during the program’s initial stage, Coach Kowalski got the chance to coach her
daughter to the finals. The next year, Cathleen earned herself a spot on the Dream


By: Chase Kaufman

Lawrence Tech


Updated: June 4, 2021 — 12:50 pm

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