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In the Pocket: McGaffin Jr. shows off power, speed

In the Pocket: McGaffin Jr. shows off power, speed

Bob Weiner's weekly bowling column
In the Pocket: McGaffin Jr. shows off power, speed
Billy McGaffin Jr.
Photographer: Photo Provided

Power, speed and a confident attitude combine to make Amsterdam’s Billy McGaffin Jr. the next dominating two-hander on the area bowling scene.

The 22-year-old Amsterdam High School graduate and SUNY Schenectady product is having another banner season delivering his favorite MOTIV-brand “rocks” that obliterate the pins.

McGaffin is currently bowling in three leagues. He’s averaging a hefty, league-leading 238 in the Amsterdam Men’s City League at Kelly’s Imperial Lanes, where last month he fired a 290 game and an 813 triple with his MOTIV Forge Fire ball. Competing with his father, Bill McGaffin Sr., the talented kegler is averaging 227 in the Vitalo Classic at Sportsman’s Bowl Saturday nights. He also competes Wednesday mornings in the Turbine Bucket Nite league at Boulevard Bowl.

“I pretty much started out as a two-hander because I was too small to throw the ball with one hand,” McGaffin said. “My grandfather was the one who originally taught me how to bowl, but I’ve also had help from my father, then from [Imperial Lanes owner] Chris Kelly, and then from Ray Ross when I bowled for SUNY Schenectady.”

McGaffin’s power game has already produced nine perfect games and 10 800 triples.

“I don’t have that many 300 games yet,” he said with a sigh. “I seem to miss one small transition frame and settle for a 279 or something like that.”

The Market 32 employee works early mornings, so he has plenty of time to pursue his favorite hobby later in the day. He bowled on the Amsterdam High School bowling team for six years, beginning in seventh grade. In junior bowling, his most memorable achievement was qualifying for the prestigious national Junior Gold Championship, where he was in seventh place after the first day of qualifying. He eventually finished 75th among roughly 2,000 competitors.

He said one of his favorite moments on the lanes was bowling in a non-sanctioned league with the entire family, including his late grandfather.

McGaffin also found success with the Capital District Youth Scholarship Tour, the region’s top monthly tournament organization. He won two CDYST events, including the CDYST Masters. 

“My game is a little different than most two-handers, because I put my thumb in the ball,” McGaffin explained. “Most of the two-handers don’t insert their thumbs when shooting for strikes. Because I do, I have a slightly different ball roll. That’s why I can use some of the stronger equipment. I have a little more forward roll on my ball. My shot is usually between the third and fourth arrows. I have a higher ball speed, 19.5 mph or higher, and I have a lot of revs on the ball.”

So far, McGaffin’s highest league average was a 239 last year in the Amsterdam Men’s City League. His two highest triples are an 841 and 835.

“My bowling goal right now is maybe try more tournament bowling,” he said. “I’d like to bowl in some NEBA [New England Bowling Association] tournaments and a PBA regional. I bowled in a NEBA a few years ago but didn’t bowl that great. As far as local tournaments are concerned, my best finish was seventh in last year’s annual New Year’s Day tournament. I’ve just got to get my schedule in order and find more time for tournaments.”

STRIKES & SPARES

Speaking of Amsterdam bowling, there will be a new format for the Amsterdam USBC City Championship at Kelly’s Imperial Lanes. The event will run on Feb. 9 and Feb. 16, with practice both nights beginning at 6 p.m. The winner gets $500. The top 32 averages in the Amsterdam USBC will be eligible. Handicap will be 80% of 225. The competitors will be seeded one through 32 in brackets, similar to the NCAA Tournament. The first two rounds will be competed on Feb. 9. The semifinals and finals will be held on Feb. 16.

Tommy Lalla rolled two 290 games en route to an 826 in the Thursday Nighters at Kelly’s Imperial Lanes.

Amy Janetsky-Smith, the assistant coach at SUNY Schenectady and a junior program coach at Boulevard Bowl, recorded a 300 game in the Scotia Junior Merchants league at Boulevard Bowl.

Pete Dougherty tossed his second career 800 triple, a 276-814, in the Daily Gazette league Tuesday at Sportsman’s Bowl.

Boulevard Bowl once again will host the Section II Bowling Championships next month. Here is the schedule: Girls (Feb. 6), Boys’ Class A (Feb. 7), Boys’ Class B (Feb. 10), Boys’ Class C (Feb. 11).

The next Amateur League Bowlers Association of New York (A.L.B.A.N.Y.) event will be a Valentine’s 9-pin no-tap tournament 9:30 a.m. Feb. 16 at Spare Time Latham. As usual, only bowlers with averages less than 215 are eligible. Entry fee is $30 if paid by Feb. 9, or $45 if received after that date. Handicap is 100% of 215, with a maximum of 75 pins per game. There will be a special 300 game jackpot for 300 games. For more information, call Jim Burton at 518-209-4748. Make checks out to Jim Burton and mail them to Jeff Segel, P.O. Box 11093, Loudonville, N.Y. 12211.

Towne Bowling Academy’s 10th annual Handicap Team Tournament wraps up this weekend with squads Saturday at 2:30 and 6 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Top prize is $4,000. Call 518-355-3606 for reservations or more information.

Upcoming Schenectady USBC tournaments include the 13th annual Youth Team Tournament Feb. 2 at 1 and 3:30 p.m. at Towne Bowling Academy and the Open Tournament Feb. 7-16 at Boulevard Bowl. Entry blanks appear on the Schenectady USBC website, www.usbc-sba.com.

The format for the Open Tournament is three-person teams, with optional singles entries for $10 per bowler.

Uncle Sam Lanes hosts its Superbowl Bakers doubles tournament Feb. 2 at 11 a.m. Entry fee is $80 per team. There will be eight games of alternate-frames baker style.

The Kingpin’s Alley Family Fun Center’s Scratch Doubles tournament is scheduled for Feb. 9 at 10 a.m. Top prize is $2,000. One in five teams advance to the single-game bracket finals. Entry fee is $180 per team.

Towne Bowling Academy hosts an Eliminator Tournament on Feb. 1 at 1:30 p.m. Top prize is $1,000, based on 60 entries. There will be three age divisions: 49-and-under, 50-59 and 60-plus. Entry fee is $70. There will be four games of qualifying, with one in five qualifying for the eliminator format. Call 315-256-7100 for more information.

MAJOR BOWLING

John Leone hammered a 268 triplicate for an 804 triple, and Jim Parker tossed a 277-750 for the individual highlights in the Sportsman’s Majors Monday night at Sportsman’s Bowl.

Tom Earl banged out a 290-785 triple, Liz Kuhlkin shot a 771, Craig Taylor ripped a 270-760 and Steve Horwedel rolled a perfect game to pace the Reis Group Kim Brown Memorial City League Monday night at Towne Bowling Academy.

Craig Taylor fired a 279-974 four-game series, Jessica Aiezza ripped a 258-964 and Cliff Ruth registered a 276-924 for the top performances in the Reis Group Kim Brown Memorial Mixed Doubles league Wednesday night at Towne Bowling Academy.

In the Amsterdam Men’s City League at Kelly’s Imperial Lanes, Billy McGaffin Jr. shot a 256-740, Tim Banta produced a 287-739, Mike Miseno fired a 279-706, Nick Natoli tossed a 257-699 and Justin Lansing had a 299-698.

Jack Scaccia Jr. had a 289-969, Brian Hart rolled a 259-962, John Mecca collected a 249-948 and Ryan Karabin had a 262-943 in the Frank DePalma Boulevard Classic.

REIS GROUP KIM BROWN MEMORIAL CITY LEAGUE
Standings
J&F Lawn Care 6-0, DeCrescente Distributing 5-1, Towne Bowling Academy 5-1, A Plus Heating 5-1, D&D Lawncare 5-1, Broadway Lanes 3-3, Bedrock Construction 3-3, Kristel Mechanic 3-3, Boulevard Bowl 3-3, Downs Roofing 2-4, Falvey Real Estate 2-4, 20 North 2-4, Rollarama 2-4, Mohawk Honda 1-5, Action Bowling Supply 1-5, Vito Sindoni & Son 0-6.
Match summaries
DeCrescente Distributing (2)
Jessica Aiezza 204-210-224 — 638, Mark Kuhlkin 246-245-247 — 738, Scott Rogers 222-184-192 — 598, Liz Kuhlkin 255-258-258 — 771. Totals: 927-897-921 — 2,745.
Falvey Real Estate (1)
Dan Auricchio 217-270-236 — 723, Jeff Young 216-269-215 — 700, Ron Unser 207-203-223 — 633, John Walther III 275-200-236 — 711. Totals: 915-942-910 — 2,767.
———
Action Bowling Supply (0)
Rit Fazzone 169-155-172 — 496, Bob Messick 168-195-180 — 543, Natasha Bidwell 214-234-203 — 651, Matt Fazzone 190-237-203 — 630. Totals: 741-821-758 — 2,320.
Broadway Lanes (3)
Mark Russ 232-215-193 — 640, Helen Waite 267-227-237 — 731, Roy Vanderbogart 216-237-278 — 731, Justin Barcomb 194-209-213 — 616. Totals: 909-888-921 — 2,718.
———
Bedrock Construction (3)
Jim Geiger 204-258-192 — 654, Kris Impellizzeri212-247-223 — 682, Jody Becker 225-201-217 — 643, Tim Hunt 225-223-191 — 639. Totals: 866-929-823 — 2,618.
Downs Roofing (0)
Chris Tinkle 246-224-203 — 673, Nick Barnes 181-196-215 — 592, Ryan Karabin 209-214-186 — 609, Billy Wigand 195-212-146 — 553. Totals: 831-846-750 — 2,427.
———
D&D Lawncare (3)
Karrie Blake 203-258-278 — 739, Laura Rotter 278-227-211 — 716, Jeremy Noble 211-215-237 — 663, Carol Crandall 192-194-215 — 601. Totals: 884-894-941 — 2,719.
Vito Sindoni & Son (0)
Scott Chastenay 226-150-199 — 575, Mike DiCerbo 197-198-187 — 582, Rich Strath 212-178-231 — 621, Joe VanDerLinden 224-176-276 — 676. Totals: 859-702-893 — 2,454.
———
J&F Lawn Care (3)
Jason Brown 221-247-202 — 670, R.J. Martinez 212-279-203 — 694, Nick Stricos 195-162-267 — 624, Steve Hallenbeck 268-216-222 — 706. Totals: 896-904-894 — 2,694.
Mohawk Honda (0)
Ed Gumm 204-178-168 — 550, John Askew 245-211-178 — 634, Ken LaBelle Jr. 191-196-190 — 577, Mark Ray 190-246-290 — 726. Totals: 830-831-826 — 2,487.
———
Boulevard Bowl (1)
P.J. Derenzo 190-242-205 — 637, Craig Smith 224-206-189 — 619, Ken Wilkins 193-187-198 — 578, Mike Scaccia 248-190-178 — 616. Totals: 855-825-770 — 2,450.
A Plus Heating (2)
Marc Fowler 239-257-258 — 754, Mike Nolan 204-205-237 — 646, Bill Nolan 212-200-180 — 592, Bob Faragon 198-228-254 — 680. Totals: 853-890-929 — 2,672.
———
20 North (1)
Craig Taylor 270-243-247 — 760, Tom Rogers 245-239-151 — 635, Joel Donato 216-186-194 — 596, Tommy Donato 253-214-215 — 682. Totals: 984-882-807 — 2,673.
Rollarama (2)
Keith Lawyer 221-170-196 — 587, Dan Rotter 144-202-194 — 540, Steve Horwedel 221-300-222 — 743, Tony Palumbo 155-235-208 — 598. Totals: 741-907-820 — 2,468.
———
Towne Bowling Academy (2)
Tom Earl 234-261-290 — 785, Tom DiBell 168-227-172 — 567, Don Herrington 174-235-214 — 623, Debbie Capullo 247-247-207 — 701. Totals: 823-970-883 — 2,676.
Kristel Mechanic (1)
Mel Kristel 236-185-212 — 633, Jeff Whitehouse 225-197-172 — 594, Ed White 226-226-208 — 660, Bryan Kelley 170-201-164 — 535. Totals: 857-809-756 — 2,422.

SPORTSMAN’S BOWL
Standings
Metroland Photo 16-0, Muny Grille 15-1, Next Level Detailing 12-4, The River Road House 11-5, The Appliance Specialist 9-7, Universal Auto Parts 8-8, Mike’s Hot Dogs 8-8, Bob’s Pro Shop 8-8, Team No. 10 6-10, Klonowski’s Pro Shop 2-14, Madison Grille 1-15, I.D.I.D. 0-16.
Match summaries
I.D.I.D. (0)
Tony Fernandez 193-160-226 — 579, Flash Gordon 158-184-182 — 524, Jim Valentino 198-175-162 — 535, A.J. Perone 227-186-215 — 628. Totals: 776-705-785 — 2,266.
Muny Grille (4)
Jay Diamond 269-237-226 — 732, Dave Bingham 243-237-233 — 713, John Musto Jr. 240-233-259 — 732, Jamie Diamond 243-257-241 — 741. Totals: 995-964-959 — 2,918.
———
Universal Auto Parts (0)
Andy Smith 214-238-192 — 644, Bill Heaphy III 223-204-190 — 617, Chris Fedden 265-188-191 — 644, Joe DeVillas 196-188-279 — 663. Totals: 898-818-852 — 2,568.
Bob’s Pro Shop (4)
Fred McMahon 257-204-241 — 702, Ron Williams 276-198-225 — 699, Bob Tedesco Jr. 190-256-205 — 651, Mike Smith 238-237-225 — 700. Totals: 961-895-896 — 2,752.
———
Madison Grille (0)
Nick Kallner 143-159-171 — 473, Eric Hilton 185-194-258 — 637, B.J. Rucinski Jr. 236-216-192 — 644, Chris Mazzone 186-226-245 — 657. Totals: 750-795-866 –2,411.
Metroland Photo (4)
Lee Quivey 173-182-235 — 590, Steve Renzi 199-204-229 — 632, Mike Gallitelli 245-246-211 — 702, B.J. Smith Jr. 267-255-204 — 726. Totals: 884-887-879 — 2,650.
———
Next Level Detailing (2)
Mike Guidarelli 210-202-215 — 627, Jim Bassotti 237-208-204 — 649, Jim Parker 245-228-277 — 750, Matt Swiatocha 215-227-277 — 719. Totals: 907-865-973 — 2,745.
The River Road House (2)
Christian Chiarito 228-224-203 — 655, Bill Carl 205-226-203 — 634, Kalynn Carl 218-193-191 — 602, John Leone 268-268-268 — 804. Totals: 919-911-865 — 2,695.
———
Mike’s Hot Dogs (0)
Doug Semerad 207-205-190 — 602, Tammy Sader 215-186-217 — 618, Mike Giaquinto 191-214-209 — 614, Mike Piotrowski 249-202-205 — 656, Totals: 862-807-821 — 2,490.
Team No. 10 (4)
Noah Burke 218-227-205 — 650, Rob Mengel 193-191-252 — 636, Cory Buckley 201-204-200 — 605, Tyler Mochrie 268-234-190 — 692. Totals: 880-856-847 — 2,583.
———
The Appliance Specialist (3)
Dan Whelan 156-224-226 — 606, Mike Liberatore 193-244-257 — 694, Zach Gravell 236-213-244 — 693, Kendra Klimek 158-171-169 — 498. Totals: 743-852-896 — 2,491.
Klonowski’s Pro Shop (1)
Doug Bywater 195-210-203 — 608, Ted Klonowski Jr. 215-190-211 — 616, Vince Simoni 241-210-203 — 654, Jim Petronis 202-175-180 — 557. Totals: 853-785-797 — 2,435.

REIS GROUP KIM BROWN MEMORIAL MIXED DOUBLES
Standings
GPC Solar Control 47-13, Boulevard Bowl 44-16, A Touch of Country Florist 40-20, Towne Bowling Academy 38.5-21.5, DeCrescente Distributing 37-23, Sportsman’s Bowl 36-24, Never Enough Performance 34-26, Sindoni Sausage 33-27, Next Level Detailing 33-27, Capital District Mobile Vet 29-31, Pete’s Auto Parts 29-31, Solid Surface 27-33, Loyal Nutrition 26-34, 518 Auto 26-34, Revolutions Prop Shop 25-35, 15 Church 25-35, A Plus Heating & Cooling 21-39, Strike & Spare Pro Shop 20-40, Bellevue Builder 15-45, Jackie Goodell Keller Williams 14.5-45.5.
Match summaries
Towne Bowling Academy (16.5)
Natasha Bidwell 186-207-223-204 — 820, Matt Fazzone 236-263-225-201 — 925. Totals: 457-505-583-440 — 1,885.
Jackie Goodell Keller Williams (3.5)
Nicole D’Amario 158-147-233-171 — 709, Tom Rogers 234-217-194-216 — 861. Totals: 445-417-480-440 — 1,782.
———
Loyal Nutrition (11)
Amber Dominic 227-225-203-185 — 840, Vinny Struffolino 248-246-201-214 — 909. Totals: 530-526-459-454 — 1,969.
A Touch of Country Florist (9)
Janelle Irwin 247-268-219-177 — 911, Steve Irwin 279-147-208-189 — 823. Totals: 561-450-462-401 — 1,874.
———
518 Auto (5)
Kaitlyn Goodermote 177-203-215-192 — 787, Nick Barnes 249-225-215-211 — 900. Totals: 475-477-479-452 — 1,883.
DeCrescente Distributing (15)
Jessica Aiezza 224-234-258-248 — 964, Scott Rogers 247-193-234-238 — 912. Totals: 484-440-505-499 — 1,928.
———
Pete’s Auto Parts (14)
Jenn Schissler 214-221-206-192 — 833, Chuckie Schissler 212-212-189-234 — 847. Totals: 470-477-439-470 — 1,856.
15 Church (6)
Aliyah Liberatore 181-227-172-180 — 760, Ben Empie 162-224-173-182 — 741. Totals: 421-529-423-440 — 1,813.
———
Sportsman’s Bowl (5)
Erika Poje 178-206-257-167 — 920, Joe Wolf 209-176-164-204 — 753. Totals: 433-428-467-417 — 1,745.
GPC Solar Control (15)
Elizabeth Criscuolo 175-165-147-174 — 661, Gabe Criscuolo 239-235-213-209 — 896. Totals: 492-478-438-461 — 1,869.
———
Revolutions Pro Shop (16)
Lindsey McPhail 203-203-257-222 — 885, Don Herrington 222-170-248-214 — 854. Totals: 446-394-526-457 — 1,823.
Capital District Mobile Vet (4)
Chris Allen-Valenzuela 203-226-180-213 — 822, John Askew 206-149-203-214 — 772. Totals: 430-396-404-448 — 1,678.
———
Next Level Detailing (16)
Kim Swiatocha (absent) 201-201-201-201 — 804, Tom Earl 200-279-258-205 — 942. Totals: 424-503-482-429 — 1,838.
A Plus Heating & Cooling (4)
Michelle Largeteau 122-134-179-156 — 591, Tony Pasquerella 138-158-193-114 — 603. Totals: 372-404-484-382 — 1,642.
———
Bellevue Builder (7)
Ursula Pasquerella 216-190-163-215 — 784, Lee Quivey 192-226-256-183 — 857. Totals: 451-459-462-441 — 1,813.
Sindoni Sausage (13)
Laura Rotter 206-228-205-191 — 830, Craig Taylor 279-259-221-215 — 974. Totals: 501-503-442-422 — 1,868.
———
Strike & Spare Pro Shop (7)
Jackie Malone (absent) 205-205-205-205 — 820, Craig Schoonmaker 206-201-228-257 — 892. Totals: 444-439-466-495 — 1,844.
Solid Surface (13)
Cheyanne McPhail 206-235-245-143 — 829, Austin Zullo 189-255-225-198 — 867. Totals: 442-537-517-388 — 1,696.
———
Never Enough Performance (5)
Kate Clark 267-194-175-180 — 816, Dave McLear 209-236-171-214 — 830. Totals: 510-464-380-428 — 1,782.
Boulevard Bowl (15)
Lisa Rathbun-Read 229-195-187-214 — 925, Cliff Ruth 171-222-276-255 — 924. Totals: 448-465-511-517 — 1,941.

FRANK DEPALMA BOULEVARD CLASSIC
Standings
Boulevard Bowl 8-2, Derenzo’s Tax Service 8-2, Town & Country Lanes 5-5, Down’s Roofing 4-6, D.A. Parisi & Co. 4-6, Ledies 4-6, Kalpro 4-6, Masons Automotive 3-7.
Match Summaries
Downs Roofing (1)
Zach Strachan 219-181-206-200 — 806, Ryan Karabin 262-213-235-233 — 943, Tony Bianchi 170-163-244-194 — 771. Totals: 651-557-685-627 — 2,520.
D.A. Parisi $ Co. (4)
John Mecca 235-249-207-257 — 948, Jeff Williams 173-201-239-197 — 810, Ken Wilkins 233-181-241-224 — 879. Totals: 641-631-687-678 — 2,637.
———
Derenzo’s Tax Service (3)
Bob Tuttle 236-255-247-163 — 901, Spark Derenzo 194-187-211-264 — 856, P.J. Derenzo 195-198-250-223 — 866. Totals: 625-640-708-650 — 2,623.
Ledies (2)
Kathy Byrk 188-205-265-173 — 831, Mark Hansen 249-280-217-193 — 939, Dan Byrk 195-257-194-203 — 849. Totals: 632-742-676-569 — 2,619.
———
Town & Country Lanes (4)
Terry Ray 246-165-247-202 — 860, Phil James 173-201-237-213 — 824, Jack Scaccia Jr. 246-289-210-224 — 969. Totals: 665-655-694-639 — 2,653.
Kalpro (1)
Keith Lawyer 187-268-214-195 — 864, Kyle Wilkins 211-234-182-192 — 819, Joe Carusone 204-263-180-212 — 859. Totals: 602-765-576-599 — 2,542.
———
Masons Automotive (1)
Ron Williams 245-233-215-223 — 916, Robin Frederburg 188 single, Lee Quivey 179-185-238 — 602, Zachary Gravell 215-195-183-208 — 801. Totals: 648-607-583-669 — 2,507.
Boulevard Bowl (4)
Michael Scaccia 238-200-264-159 — 861, Brian Hart 247-259-249-207 — 962, Steve Horwedel 268-254-198-175 — 895. Totals: 753-713-711-541 — 2,718.

Reach Bob Weiner at [email protected] or @BobWeiner58 on Twitter.

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