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Alberta Special Olympics bowler preparing for stiff competition

Lori Cornwell is ready to throw down. The Team Alberta 5-pin bowling athlete practices once a week, preparing for what could be a highlight in her sporting career.

“My nerves are coming because I have not been sleeping very good,” said Cornwell.

With pin-splitting professionals descending on her hometown, she knows a fraction of an inch can win games.

And after 10 years in the sport, she’s happy to pass on tips and tricks to teammates and competitors.

“I’m so excited to go on this journey with my teammates and my amazing coaches … to go up and welcome all of the teams coming from Canada as well as my other teammates from Alberta,” said Cornwell.

Click to play video: 'Calgary-area Special Olympians defend national championship: ‘It’s just going to be crazy!’'

Calgary-area Special Olympians defend national championship: ‘It’s just going to be crazy!’

It’s an attitude her coach, also a parent of a special Olympian, has fostered.

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“Meeting people is very important and having fun is very important and if you come home with a medal, that’s amazing,” said Corinna Cayer.

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And camaraderie is a skill Cornwell is ready to put into practice.

“You may have made a mistake, but guess what? Try again,” coached Cornwell. “Let’s do this. We can do this. We got this far.”

The balls start rolling Wednesday through Friday for finals. Medal ceremonies are scheduled for Saturday.

Corwell is ready to share her passion for sport and her winning attitude.

“If you get out there and you don’t succeed, you got out there and tried your best. And that’s all that counts. If you come home with no medal, deep down you’re a champion by heart and dedication.”

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