As a senior at Oswego High School, Marty Resner was a member of the Panthers’ inaugural bowling team and was the first individual medal winner in school history.
The 2009 Oswego graduate carried a 210 average and helped the Panthers to an undefeated regular season and a seventh-place finish in the IHSA state tournament.
Now, Resner is about to make history once again after being selected as Augustana College’s first women’s bowling head coach.
The Vikings announced in April the addition of women’s bowling and men’s volleyball for the 2017-18 school year, and Resner was officially tabbed on June 10.
“Last summer, I contacted Mike Zapolski, the athletic director at Augustana, and mentioned that I’ve really enjoyed coaching bowling and wondering if it would be possible to get a club team started at Auggie. I wanted to spread the sport around,” Resner said. “He thought it was a good idea and said we could talk about it. Once I heard it might be added as a sport, I got excited. I got my resume updated, and when they officially announced it, two hours later I turned in my application.”
Resner is an Augustana alum and three-year football letterwinner for the Vikings, but is looking forward to transitioning back to the sport he first picked up at the age of 5.
After graduating from Augustana in 2013, he has spent the past three years as a math teacher and coach at Bettendorf High School in Iowa. He was an assistant coach for the boys and girls bowling teams, assistant football coach at the varsity and freshman levels and coached the sprinters in track and field.
“My dad [Mike] coaches at Oswego, my brother [Mickey] coaches at Minooka High School and my oldest sister [Sandy] bowled at the University of Illinois; I come from a bowling family,” Resner said. “I don’t have a lot of bowling experience, but I have a good background and a lot of connections in the [Chicago] suburbs and around eastern Iowa to recruit from, and I think that helps too.”
Resner recently resigned from Bettendorf and will cross back over into Illinois to teach math at Sherrard High School, located just south of Moline in Rock Island County.
“Sherrard is maybe 20 minutes from Augustana, so I’ll be able to do both,” Resner said. “We have this whole year to set up and recruit, so that helps. We’d like to get some competitive bowlers in there, and upperclassmen who are already at Auggie to help out the newer people we’ll be bringing in.”
Resner, who currently resides in Iowa, is also planning a June 2017 wedding with his fiancée, Larissa Wilden, in addition to planning for his inaugural season with the Augustana women’s bowling team.
He is also pursuing his master’s in sports management through Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.
“Marty’s longtime association with the sport of bowling and his strong connections to Augustana and the Quad Cities will be important assets as we launch this new program,” Zapolski said in a press release. “Bowling is a growing high school sport in a number of colleges’ critical recruiting areas, and our goal is to leverage Augustana’s academic and athletic reputation to quickly build a highly competitive program.”