Eric Stangle’s thumbless release overpowered the lane conditions Sunday in the Western Diner Northern Bowlers Association Hoe Bowl Holiday Open.
Most bowlers in the field of 49 had to use an extreme outside angle or a deep inside entry to the pocket to be successful on the Viper oil pattern, but Stangle remained around the 15th board all afternoon, and barely held off left-hander Jim Patricelli by four pins to capture his second career NBA title.
Stangle, a 32-year-old from Ballston Spa, finished with a five-game total of 1,154, an average of just under 231, and collected $890. Patricelli, from Troy, shot a 1,150 and earned $445, while fellow lefty Will Eastman of Oneonta was third with a 1,116 ($230).
“I was able to play in just about the same area all day,” said Stangle. “I started out spare, spare, 10-pin, 10-pin, and I made a quick switch to my Hyde ball. After that, I didn’t have to move much at all the rest of the day.”
Stangle took the early lead with a 236 opener, and he never dropped below second the rest of the tournament. Craig Schoonmaker ripped a 247 in game No. 2 to grab a 19-pin advantage over Stangle.
Patricelli, who shot a 257 in the second game, followed that up with a 232 to move into a tie for the lead with Stangle.
Stangle’s 267 in the fourth game gave him a 32-pin edge over Patricelli, but it almost wasn’t enough.
Patricelli opened the final game with a spare, but then clicked off six consecutive strikes. He converted a 3-5-9 spare in the eighth frame, but went high in the ninth for a 6-7-10 split. He marked in the 10th frame, and finished with a 231.
Stangle missed a spare late in his final game, but he struck in the 10th to hold off Patricelli.
“I knew that Patricelli was close. I knew I needed to show up in the 10th frame,” said Stangle. “It was just enough.”
Stangle now has two NBA titles and two Huck Finn “Capital Region Bowling Show” crowns on his resume to go along with 34 perfect games and 17 800 triples. He plans to defend his title in the New Year’s Day Open at Saratoga Strike Zone Thursday.
The next NBA event will be Jan. 18 at Towne Bowling Academy.
Cashers: Eric Stangle (Ballston Spa) 1,154, $890; Jim Patricelli (Troy) 1,150, $445; Will Eastman (Oneonta) 1,116, $230; Joe Mazuryk (Duanesburg) 1,109, $175; Craig Schoonmaker (Glenville) 1,077, $125; Dan White (Agawam, Mass.), 1,072, $90; Rick Bogholtz (Nassau) 1,059, $80; Mark Taylor (Albany) 1,048, $65; Russ Hunter (South Bethlehem), 1,048, $65; Jason Baker (Sharon Springs) 1,037, $50; John Hallenbeck (Hudson) 1,037, $50.
Other top bowlers: Jody Becker 1,025, Gary Bingham 1,022, RJ Martinez 1,021, Mike Drexel 1,012, Rich Strath 1,003, Dan Furman 1,001, Mike Colby 987, Craig Smith 975, Dustin Paupst 971, Jeff Keegan 971, Steve Wagoner 971, John Riozzi 968, Bob Kavanaugh 967, Gene Speenburgh 954, Mark Rathbun 944, Harold Jenkins 942, Kyle Haines 940, Jason Christiana 936, Ken Stroud 933, Ed Czyzewski 917, Jason Brown 917, Jeff Voght 914, Nunzi Manuli 911, Henry Olthoff 903, Chuck Slater 901, Nick Miseno 898, Ed Zautner 896, Warren Guernsey 893, Pete Linck 885.