Friday, May 27, 2016

PWBA Sacramento Open

A couple of weeks ago, we competed in the PWBA Sacramento Open at Steve Cook's Fireside Lanes.   Coming in 3rd place at this event last year, I definitely had my sights set high for a great week.

This week, we competed on a 45' pattern using fire oil.
My Scandal looked great, but it seemed that I didn't have anything to go to once that ball started to burn up. So I drilled two more Scandals - one with a similar pin placement to the original, but with a weight hole, and the other with a bigger pin distance (5" pin.) All three Scandals are layed out pin up.

During the first block of qualifying, I started with my original Scandal with 500 grit. I shot 214 and 176. I then switched to my Scandal with the weight hole and shot games of 230, 217, 209 and ended with a nice 268 game for +114. This put me in 7th place going into the final 6 games of qualifying.

After a short break, we came back for our final 6 games of qualifying. I shot 234 the first game using my original Scandal with light 500 grit. The next game I struggled shooting 180. I then switched to my Scandal with the weight hole to shoot 200 and186. I needed a little more length and decided to switch to my longest pin Scandal (above, right) and shot 212 and 215 for +141 overall, which put me in 13th place going into the casher's round.

In the casher's round, I couldn't seem to figure out a good line to stay consistent and carry. I struggled and ended up coming in 25th place in the tournament. Although I was disappointed with my finish, it was still a good week.

After the PWBA Sacramento Open, Clara Guerrero and I held our first of several clinics that we are conducting throughout the PWBA Tour Season. For more on the clinics, check out my next blog!

Until next time!

Monday, May 9, 2016

PWBA Sonoma Open

This past week, I competed in the Nationwide PWBA Sonoma Open at Double Decker Lanes in Rohnert Park, Calif.

Prior to the event, my roommates and I decided to make a pit stop and spend the night in San Francisco. I played tour guide and we saw a few sights before traveling on to Rohnert Park the next morning. We went to Pier 39 and saw the sea lions and Alcatraz. We then went to Fisherman's Wharf for an amazing seafood dinner.


The next morning, we made a couple of stops at the iconic Golden Gate Bridge before presuming our trip to wine country, the sight of the PWBA Tour stop.

This week, we bowled on a 37' flat oil pattern using Ice oil. I had a great practice session, but decided, in talking to my EBI boss Rob Gotchall, that I needed to drill another ball to have other options. So I drilled an Ebonite Warrior Elite.

During the first 6 games of qualifying, I started with my Track Paradox and then switched to my newly drilled Warrior Elite, playing outside shooting games of 201, 204, 223, 186, 205 and 173 for -8. With the scores being pretty low, that put me in 28th place.

I decided to drill another Track Paradox for the second block, to help with some carry issues I faced at the end of the first block. In the second 6-game block, I started with my Warrior Elite with 500 grit, playing far outside and shot 228 and 204. I then switched to my newly drilled Paradox and shot 200 and 210. Then hitting a bad pair, I shot 164. Being close to the cut number at that point, I needed a good last game to secure the top 32 cut. I switched to my Paradox Pearl and shot a clean 216 to make it to +14 overall, which put me in 24th place. The cut to the top 32 was -54.

The next morning, I needed to bowl really well in the 6 games of the casher's round to make the next cut to the top 12. Unfortunately, things did not go my way, and I ended up in 28th place in the tournament.

After the tournament, I did manage to do a little sightseeing and visited Korbel Champagne winery. I took a tour and got to learn how they make champagne, which was very interesting.

Congratulations to EBI staffer Jen Higgins, Kelly Kulick, Shannon O'Keefe and Hui Fen New on qualifying for the stepladder finals.

HUGE thank you to Jim Decker, Dennis, Curtis Woods and the entire staff of Double Decker Lanes for hosting an amazing event.

Stay tuned for our next event, starting this Thursday, May 12th at Steve Cook's Fireside Lanes in Citrus Heights, CA. #letsbowl

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

The Start of the PWBA Tour Season - The PWBA Las Vegas Open

This past weekend, I traveled to Las Vegas, Nev. for the start of the 2016 PWBA Tour. Prior to competition starting, I had the privilege to participate in some exciting events at the USBC Convention.

On Thursday night, I attended the USBC Hall of Fame dinner. With a room full of Bowling's elite, I watched as Kim Adler, Joan Romeo, Steve Kloempken, Harry Sullins and Mike Durbin were added to the prestigious USBC Hall of Fame.

USBC Hall of Famers

Greater L.A. Junior All Stars Alumni that were present at the Hall of Fame dinner

The next morning, I attended some of the USBC Convention activities as part of the PWBA and as an active athlete delegate. The PWBA had a special introduction during the annual meeting and afterwards we had an assembly line of autograph signing for all of the delegates. Later that afternoon we had our first official practice session of the season.

For the first week on the PWBA Tour, we bowled at Texas Station Resort and Casino and competed on a 39' pattern using Fire Oil.

Only having surgery 6 weeks prior and only being back on the lanes for 2 weeks, I was a little concerned with the amount of games, but felt ready for the tournament, as I had practiced a lot prior to having my surgery.

During the first block of qualifying, I shot 213, 246, 228, 193, 235 and 213 for +128. I used my Columbia 300 Delirium Shock to start and then switched to my Columbia 300 Oath and Ebonite Game Breaker 2 later in the block.

The 2nd block proved to be much more difficult as the lanes played a lot flatter. I grinder the entire block, shooting games of 186, 213, 191, 201, 189 and 221 for +1 on the block and +129 overall. I again used my Columbia 300 Delirium Shock to start, but then quickly had to move in and open up my angles using my Columbia 300 Oath and then slowing things down and opening up my angles even more using a Track Paradox. This put me in 16th place out of 89 participants. The cut to the top 32 was +15.

I was lucky enough to have my parents present for this first event, as well as my second Mom, USBC Hall of Famer - Virginia Norton, helping me and cheering me on during qualifying.

The next morning, we bowled 6 more games in the cashers round and the cut would then be to the top 12 people for match play.

I grinded in the beginning, striking out in the 9th and 10th frame for 212 my first game. Then doubled in the 9th and first shot in the 10th for 191 in game 2. I then switched to my paradox and slowed things down to open up the lanes and shot 221, 232 and 209 putting me at +194 going into the last game. Needing a big last game, I struck out from the 6th frame until the second shot in the 10th frame when a swisher 5 pin cost me to shot 223 and ended up making me miss the cut to the top 12, as I only missed by 3 pins.

All things considered, I am extremely pleased with my performance in the first event. My spare game was very good. I only missed two makeable spares the entire tournament - a 2,4,5,7 and a 2,5,7. My games were steady and I kept the ball in play a lot. I didn't have any really low games and struck out a majority of the 10th frames/end of games. HUGE thank you to Jerry Francomano, Marshall Heimbach and the entire staff at Texas Station for hosting a great event!


Congratulations to EBI Hammer staffer Shannon Pluhowsky for leading the event, being top seed going into the TV finals. Also, BIG congratulations to my roommate Sandra Gongora for making her first TV show as the No. 2 seed. She will face the winner of Rocio Restrepo and Liz Johnson. Be sure to tune in to the TV finals which will air on CBS Sports Network on June 7th.

Until next time... Be sure to follow along on  as we compete in the Nationwide Sonoma County Open at Double Decker Lanes in Rohnert Park.  #letsbowl