In the Pocket: Super Bowl Doubles draws quality field
One of the most popular events on the Huck Finn/Northeast Bowling Proprietors of New York schedule will once again be close to a full house.
The annual Super Bowl Doubles tournament, set for this weekend at Boulevard Bowl, has already closed out its 10 a.m. qualifier for Sunday morning with 60 teams.
Tournament director Jeff Segel says there are still a few openings for the Saturday qualifier at 3 p.m. at Spare Time-Latham. The finals will be held Sunday at Boulevard Bowl at 1 p.m., and the show will be taped Feb. 12 at 6 p.m. at Middleburgh Lanes.
“This is one of the earliest tournaments that we’ve ever filled up,” said Segel. “I’m hoping to fill up the qualifier on Saturday, as well, so we can have 80 teams.
“The bowlers like the doubles events, and they always seem to come out for them.”
Segel said the field is once again loaded with talent. Joe Mazuryk and regular partner Mike Drexel lead the way. Mazuryk has already won a couple of Huck Finn and Northern Bowlers Association events this season, while Drexel is also a perennial threat in both Huck Finn singles and doubles competition, as well as NBA events.
Longtime partners Sonny Dorstek and John Walther III are also teaming up, along with a few teams from western Massachusetts. Regional pro and former Donato Scratch Singles champ Mike Lichstein, who has one of the most unorthodox deliveries in the game, will bowl with Chris Rebsock, while Billy Green teams up with Billy Webb.
Broadalbin’s Steve Wagoner partners up with Danny White, while left-hander Pete Dougherty, a former doubles champ, will bowl with R.J. Martinez.
For reservations on the Saturday squad, call Segel at 439-7268.
Segel reminds area bowlers that the Mixed Doubles tournament, scheduled for Sportsman’s Bowl on Feb. 12 at 10 a.m., is also nearly filled.
“There are only seven spots available, right now, so bowlers should call me right away for reservations,” Segel said.
In other Huck Finn news, last week’s semifinalists included
Mazuryk, Brian LeClair, Gene Speenburgh and Wagoner. They will bowl on the television finals on Feb. 12 at Middleburgh Lanes as part of a double-header with the Super Bowl Doubles finalists.
The Huck Finn “Capital Region Bowling Show” amateur/handicap qualifiers will hold in-house qualifying beginning Monday and running right through the end of the month. Cost is $10 per entry. Handicap is 100 percent to 220. The top eight entries from each house will advance to the finals, to be held at the Hootz Family Fun Center in Ravena March 11 at 1 p.m. The top four then advance to the TV taping March 18 at 4 p.m. That show will be televised April 1 at 11 a.m. on FOX23.
SECTIONALS ARE HERE
The Section II tournaments begin Thursday with the girls’ event at Spare Time-Clifton Park, followed by the boys’ Class C-D event at Boulevard next Friday, the boys’ Class A tournament at Boulevard on Feb. 13 and the boys’ Class B tournament on Feb. 14.
Both the Colonie boys and the Colonie girls have won three straight sectional championships and should be in the mix once again.
The Colonie boys, coached by Dan Ahl, feature Casey Schoonmaker, Jake Rivers, Justin Covel and Cory Buckley. Mohonasen, which narrowly slides down to Class B this year, should also contend with Zach Porter, Ron Zadrozney and Jo-Jo Scaccia. Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, paced by Matt Trestick and Austin Van Buren, is also strong. In the smaller classes, watch out for Bob Lange’s Hoosick Falls Panthers, as well as the Mechanicville Red Raiders.
The Colonie girls, coached by veteran Pete Gruden, is led by Hannah Mochrie, Sarah Brooks and Tamara Champagne, but the Garnet Raiders should get plenty of challenge from the Schenectady Patriots in Class A, with Brittany Barkley and eighth-grader Lauren Piotrowski.
Mohonasen is spearheaded by Erika Bollock, Rebecca Brown and Jessica Mazzo, while Schalmont is also a contender, with standout Natasha Bidwell leading the way.
Another team to watch in the girls’ competition will be Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk, which features Melanie Schmitt, Kourtney Irwin and Amanda Persio.
Bowling fans will be able to watch two special live broadcasts next month produced by the United States Bowling Congress on BowlTV — the USBC Open Championships Kickoff Special and the USBC Collegiate Sectionals Assignments Show.
The first live broadcast, the USBC Open Championships Kickoff Special, will take place Feb. 10 at 4 p.m. from the Baton Rouge River Center in Baton Rouge, La. The USBC Collegiate Sectionals Assignment Show will be broadcast Feb. 22 at 4 p.m.
“These shows will offer important information presented in a way that has never before been available to bowling fans,” USBC managing director of media and events Pete Tredwell said in a USBC press release. “These are can’t-miss shows for competitors and fans of both the Open Championships and college bowling.”
For college bowling fans, the USBC Collegiate Sectionals Assignments Show will announce the teams that have been selected to compete in the postseason at the USBC Intercollegiate Team Championships Sectionals. In addition to finding out which teams made the post season, the show will also announce which sectional site each team has been assigned to for 2012.
Much like what has happened in pro golf, pro bowling will become a world tour with the alliance of the PBA and the World Tenpin Bowling Association. That alliance will allow international and domestic PBA members who compete in World Bowling Tour events to earn PBA Tour titles in WBT events and to bowl in PBA Tour events in the United States.
“This agreement fulfills a dream for all lifelong bowling fans,” said PBA commissioner Tom Clark in a PBA press release. “We created the PBA World Series of Bowling in 2009 to give bowlers from around the world an opportunity to come together in a unique competitive environment. Our goal was to take the next step in expanding competition around the world. To see it happen is the most significant step our sport has ever taken in creating world-wide awareness and recognition for bowling’s best players, regardless of where they live.”
The 2012 World Bowling Tour began in January with the Brunswick Ballmaster Open in Helsinki, Finland, which was won by Bill O’Neill of Southampton, Pa. The PBA-WBT agreement includes three tournaments in the United States (the Alka-Seltzer Plus Liquid Gels United States Bowling Congress Masters, won by Mike Fagan of Dallas in Las Vegas on Sunday; a new WTBA International Open currently underway in Las Vegas, and the U.S. Open Feb. 20-26 in North Brunswick, N.J.)
Other events will include stops in Japan, Kuwait, France, the Bahamas, Korea, Thailand, Austria and Australia. Players who bowl in the WBT events will earn points toward the second annual World Bowling Tour Finals presented by the PBA, which will be held during the 2012 PBA World Series of Bowling on a date to be announced.
STRIKES AND SPARES
u The New Era Senior Tournament tour, formerly the Northeast Senior Tournament tour, continues Feb. 11 at 1 p.m. at Town ’N Country Lanes. There will be four games of qualifying in the 50-59, 60-66 and 67-plus age brackets, with one in four advancing to match play. Entry fee is $50. For reservations, call Jim Burton at 209-4748.
u The annual Blizzard Bowl will begin March 10 with a 9:45 p.m. squad at Boulevard Bowl. Anyone who bowls on that squad will be eligible for a free entry into the singles/doubles event at Burnt Hills Lanes. Other dates for the team event at Boulevard Bowl are March 18, March 25, April 1 and April 15 at 11:45 a.m. and April 21 at 9:45 p.m. The singles/doubles event at Burnt Hills Lanes will be held March 24, March 31, April 14 and April 21 at 12:30 p.m. As usual, there will be a continental breakfast for the Sunday morning squads and a buffet for the Saturday night squads. Call Boulevard Bowl for more information.
u Schaghticoke left-hander Alex Weglarz won the Troy Bowling Association’s Plastic Ball Tournament by shooting a 633 triple at Hometown Lanes. Only plastic balls were used for this event, and all the equipment was checked. Bowlers couldn’t sand their equipment or change it during competition.
u Clark Adams won last week’s Sportsman’s Bowl Eliminator, and picked up $100. John Famiano ($50) and Joe O’Toole ($20) rounded out the top three, while Dick Marx and Jon Van Dyke received a free entry into next week’s qualifier. Bowlers can try to qualify each week either through their league or in special qualifiers when lanes are available at Sportsman’s Bowl. Handicap is 80 percent of 240, and all you need to qualify for the Monday night eliminators is a 665 with handicap. Cost of qualifying within your league is $10. Cost outside of league play is $15. Call Sportsman’s Bowl at 355-4330 for more information.
u The annual Redwood Lanes Tavern Tournament will be held Feb. 11 at 3 p.m. Entry fee is $125 per five-person team. One in five teams will cash. First place will be $500 guaranteed, based on 24 teams. Handicap will be 100 percent of 220. Included will be a hot buffet. Call Redwood at 869-3581 for reservations.
u Watervliet’s Joe Smith beat Corey Buckley of Albany, 173-162, to win the Capital District Youth Scholarship Tour event last weekend at Redwood Lanes.
u The second annual Iroquois Lanes Youth Challenge will be held Feb. 26 at noon and 2:30 p.m., followed by the finals. Entry fee is $20. Trophies and deposits into USBC SMART accounts will be awarded. Bowlers will be divided into two average groups: 150 and above and 149 and below. Handicap will be 100 percent of 220. All youth bowlers will bowl three games, with the top five in each group advancing to a stepladder finals within their division. All bowlers must be USBC sanctioned. Call Millard Snell (993-2965) or Ken Smith Jr. (607-264-3164) for more information.
u The Menagerie league, which bowls 6:15 p.m. Fridays at Boulevard Bowl, still has seven openings. Dues are $15 a week. Contact Boulevard Bowl if interested in joining.
u The Schenectady-Scotia Women’s Bowling Association’s 74th annual Championship Tournament will be held at Sportsman’s Bowl, with the team event set for April 30 through May 4, and the doubles/singles event scheduled for May 7-11. Entry fee is $16 per event. Entries close April 16. Contact Millie Kielmann at 390-9499 for more information.
u The Albany Bowling Association’s Trio Tournament continues at Spare Time-East Greenbush Saturday at 1 and 3 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. Entry fee is $63 per team. Call the Albany Bowling Association at 465-4878 for reservations or more information.