People are always asking us: What does #TeamFish mean? How did it start? How can I join #TeamFish? Our Journey has been a fun and interesting one, and it’s just getting started! We’re here to answer those questions, and to share our Journey with you!
Where it all started
In 2013, at the 4th edition of the World Series of Bowling, a few friends were rooming together and having a chat after a long day of bad bowling. As Craig Nidiffer was giving a nice recap of how Connor Pickford and Kyle Troup had bowled during the day (none of whom received any pieces of paper with monetary value during the week), he compared us to poker inexperienced players he has played with before that he likes to call “Fish”.
Craig claimed that Kyle and Connor had bowled like “Fish”, then looks Connor in the eyes, smirks, then says: “Fishford“. We all share a laugh and shortly after looks at Kyle and says, “And your new name is Trout.”
Laughing uncontrollably, we start going around the room eventually coming up with names for all of our friends, like “Arcarpo” and “NidiFish“.
The few people that were present that night hanging out received oFISHal names without even knowing it. In those moments, the team was created.
The inside jokes kept going and eventually turned into a routine hashtag on Facebook when any of us are travelling together, and thus the #TeamFish ritual began.
#TeamFish hits the National Stage
Fast-forward 1 year. Connor Pickford makes his television debut in December of 2014 at the World Series of Bowling, qualifying as the number 1 seed for the Viper Championship. While he eventually ended up losing to Mika Koivuniemi 224-214, he made a splash as one of the youngest bowlers to ever appear on a nationally televised bowling event. Astute viewers would notice that on the back collar of Connor’s shirt, he proudly displayed his nickname, “Fishford“, for the world to see.
Not long after that, Kyle Troup made his television debut at the 2015 Summer Swing in Oklahoma, qualifying as the number 3 seed of the Wolf Open presented by CBS Sports Network where he ran the step ladder to capture his 1st national PBA Tour Title. During the show, Craig Nidiffer, Anthony Simonsen, and Connor Pickford, were cheering him on behind the bowlers area for the entirety of the telecast. The guys had made a couple signs to hold up, one of which read “Fear The Fro, #AfroFish“, and one that read “#TeamFish“. With Kyle’s huge win, interest began to spark for #TeamFish.
Further #TeamFish representation on more TV shows that aired across networks like CBS Sports Network and ESPN, as well as the PBA Tour’s own XtraFrame, fueled the rise of even more curiosity. We created a Facebook page that gained over 3000 followers in less than 24 hours! As the oFISHal team continues to grow, consisting of members in all ranks of the sport ranging from National touring Pros, amateurs, and some of the top youth bowlers in the country, we believe we can be the start of something new.