The first girls team to play 5-on-5

The 1978-79 Bowie girl’s basketball team was the first team in school history to switch from six-on-six to traditional five-on-five.

During the rest of 2022, The Bowie News will be celebrating its 100th anniversary. There will be many activities throughout the year.
Sports Rewind will offer up a few sports headlines from the past 100 years of Bowie News coverage including its predecessor The Bowie Booster.
This week’s column has stories that reference two seismic changes with high school basketball. One came in 1978 with girl’s basketball transitioning from six-on-six to traditional five-on-five play.
The other was in 1987 with the addition of the 3-point line.

November 26, 1978, The Bowie News
Headline: Girls have tough road ahead Bridgwater tells rotarians

Bowie High School girls basketball coach, Jean Bridgwater, was the speaker for the noon luncheon of the Rotary Club for this week.
Coach Bridgwater told the Rotarians that the Jackrabbit gals have a tough road to follow this basketball season as this will be the first year that 5-man basketball has come upon the scene.
It is extremely difficult for girls that have played totally defense the past two or three years to make the transition to a player that is both offensively and defensively minded. This applies also to the girl who has been only an offensive player.
This fact, coupled with the toughness of the 10-AA district as a whole points out that a tough challenge lies ahead for the ‘Rabbits. However, Coach Bridgwater emphasized that goals and obstacles are created for attainment and that the six seniors and six juniors are dedicated to the fact that a district championship is attainable. She pointed out that athletics not only teaches youngsters certain skills but also teaches them values as a basis for success in life.
Coach Bridgwater said, “There is no other place other than in athletics that a youngster gets in the one-on-one relationship with the adult educator.”
President Probst told the Rotarians that the second meeting in December would be the day on which Rotarians would elect three new directors to replace outgoing directors John Bennett, Bob Duvall and Jack Word.

November 5, 1987, The Bowie News
Headline: Bowie plays well against Olney Cubs

Basketball at it’s finest, maybe not, but the Bowie Jackrabbit basketball team pulled off a victory in their first scrimmage of the 1987- 88 basketball year.
Bowie’s proud Jackrabbits knocked off the Olney Cubs 39-28 at home during Tuesday night’s exhibition game.
The ‘Rabbits wasted little time showing their opponent what their intentions were and after the first eight minutes of play it was Bowie 13, Olney 6.
Scott Dosch was responsible for more than half of the points in the period for Bowie with eight, followed by Mike Roland with three, and Chris Cornelison two.
Olney, however, narrowed the gap significantly in the following period by racking up 16 points to Bowie’s 10 making the score 23-22.
A three-point shot, the first of the season, since the new rule was adopted this year, by Joel Cantwell, helped lift Bowie’s spirit and their advantage to 30-24 in the second half’s third period. Cornelison, the 6’3” freshman, was also good for four points going into the final period.
Dosch put the icing on the cake in the last minutes of the game by totaling up six additional point followed by teammates Cornelison with two and Cantwell one, for the win.
Bowie’s leading scorer was Scott Dosch with 16 points for the evening.
The Lady Rabbits will also scrimmage this Thurs day at the Jackrabbit gym.
The girls will meet Azle in what should be good round ball action.

If anyone involved with either of the teams would like to talk about the experience for a story, shoot the sports desk an email at