For more than a thousand Special Olympics bowlers, Thursday was the day to live it up on the lanes. The bowling tournament in San Antonio ended up striking friendships among the competition.

Nathaniel Mullins was knocking down pins all day despite not being able to throw his ball down the lane.

Another competitor, Felix, said that he practiced every Friday to get ready for the South Texas Special Olympics Bowling Tournament.

His mother, Natalie, was right by his side the whole time.

“I’m his biggest fan no matter what he does,” she said. “So to help him and see his progress and see how he’s absolutely enjoying this, to see him actually participate is awesome.”

Felix hasn’t competed in the Special Olympics since childhood, so his mom knows how much it means to help her son compete.

“To see his face light up when he gets, when he hits anything, actually, so yeah it’s amazing,” she said.

Even though they really wanted to win, the pair couldn’t help but cheer on their competitors. It’s a show of unity which is what the day was really all about.

“Of course we want our own kids to do better, but you know, we have to help everybody. Cheering helps everybody,” Natalie said.

So what’s next for the Special Olympics bowling duo? A little more practice, so they’ll be ready to the next time this tournament rolls around.