59 AWBA bowlers, 7 of which were new AWBA members, their wife’s, friends, family, and grandkids converged on Ft. Worth, Texas to partake in the55th AWBA National Championships held at Cityview Lanes. They came from Oregon to Florida, Virginia to California and all points in between to test their skills on what turned out to be challenging lane conditions. And for those that feared the hot, humid, sultry days of May in Texas, they were welcome with temperatures in the 60’s and off/on rain showers.
The competition got started with the Pfister/Ramus Team event on Tuesday with the team of Gary Poole, new member Jerry Voorheese, and Gary Ryan all winning their first National Championship. Poole carried the team finishing up with a 198 game that sealed the deal with a total of 1893. Tuesday afternoon the previous year’s winners participated in the Tournament of Champions. In the Scratch Division, George Holscher, Virginia, took home the prize and Eddy Hutchens, Colorado, in the Handicap Division, took first place.
Wednesday morning opened with the General Membership meeting and was well attended. May great questions were asked and the board will report back to the membership in Las Vegas its findings to the questions posed. Opening ceremonies were highlighted by the Lone Star PVA Chapter Color Guard as bowlers were introduced to those in attendance. The first set of Singles competition followed and it was quickly realized by the majority of the field that the shot was most challenging. In saying that, we all had the same shot and there were some great scores log during the first 2 sets of Singles. Wednesday night many bowlers and their friends traveled to Billy Bob’s where we were entertained by Byron Hayne, a noted country and western singer in the State of Texas put everyone in the “Texas Spirit”.
We all returned to Cityview on Thursday for the 3rd and 4th Singles set and the lanes stayed challenging but many endured. Thursday evening the AWBA hosted the Hall of Fame members to a wonderful dinner at Bonnell’s, a famous restaurant in the Ft. Worth area.
Friday began the Nelson/Welker Doubles competition with 25 teams competing for the top spot. In the end, new members Jerry “JT” Terry, Texas, and Rick Mahaney, Louisiana, outdueled Jimmy May, Virginia, and new member Mike Galloway, Kansas, for the National Doubles Title. Friday night and it was time for the Up/Down Event and it was once again a sell out as we had to turn away 26 people as we were out of lanes. The Ft. Worth community has been a great supporter of this event and the AWBA for the last 4 years and they show it by coming to bowl and financially supporting the event. The 50/50 this year set another record as it exceeded $2000.
Saturday brought on the 5th set of Singles competition with Scratch finishing up with Match play. Saturday night the Awards Banquet was wonderful and we extend our thanks to Gary Hulsenberg, Storm’s Director of Marketing, for serving as our guest speaker for the event. In “B” Division, Mike Brewer beat new member Mike Galloway 215-188, Brewer then got beat by Jerry Voorheese, 204-187, Jerry then was ousted by Bryan Shaner, 197-186 putting Top Qualifier Jerry Terry against Shaner. In the end, Shaner won his first National Championship beating Terry, 206-199. In “A” Division, a first for me as we had a tie for 5th spot between Gary Ryan and Terry Rock. In a 2 frame roll off, Ryan missed a 7 pin putting Terry in the 5th spot. Terry beat John Budd, 218-188, Gary Poole then defeat Rock, 198-170, Poole ousted Andy Bernt, 226-214 putting Poole against Top Qualifier Phillip Daniel. Daniel outlasted Gary for the “A” Title, 227-195 and his first National Title. In Scratch Division, Walt Roy out did Mike DeLoach, 170-154, Walt then eliminated Eddy Hutchens, 202-168, George Holscher then outlasted Walt, 214-208 putting George against Top Qualifier Mark Shepherd. Mark won the Scratch title defeating George, 210-175.
Individual winners of Awards were Jerry Voorheese, Senior Classic, Dawn Brewster, Alma Ludwig, Andy Bernt, Buddy Cole, +212, George Holscher, Bill Hart Sportsmanship, High Game Scr. George Holscher, 233, High Game Scr. A, Henry Walter, 212, High Game Scr. B., Jimmy May 190, High Series Scr. Mark Shepherd 668, High Series A, John Gould, 554, High Series B, Mike Brewer,443, High Hcp Game A Phillip Daniel, 266, High Hcp Game B, Bryan Shaner, 249. High Hcp Series A, Terry Rock 685, High Hcp Series B, Jerry Terry,708. Richard Carlson Scratch Division, George Holscher. Richard Carlson Handicap, Jerry Voorheese.
Finally, I would like to thank the Tournament Committee, Shawn Beam, Phillip Daniel, Smiley Wallace, Stephen Smith, and Candice Lee. I would also like to thank all the volunteers especially my wife, Onie, for doing an incredible job during the 6 days. And to the sponsors, what a great group of companies we have supporting the AWBA. To the Staff at Cityview, our thanks goes to all of you. And finally, you the members, for coming to Ft. Worth and supporting your tournament. It was my honor to be your Tournament Director. On to next year and another great Nationals at Cityview Lanes. See ya there.