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January 6, 2018 - 6:10pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

Attention Genesee Region USBC league secretaries:

If you would like your league's weekly high scores to be published on The Batavian, send an email to [email protected]. Men's scores of 220 (game) and 600 (series) or better and women's scores of 190 (game) and 540 (series) will be posted. Photos of honor score bowlers or those with newsworthy accomplishments will be posted as long as they are emailed to the same email address.

Through Jan. 6

Monday Morning Ladies
High Series

Mary Ann Stone 205-223--588
High Games
Kathy Pacino 222
Georgene Della Penna 193
J.E. Currier/Rebel Liners
Wednesday Night Ladies
High Series

Darleen Balduf 235--549
High Games
Dawn O'Neill 213
Wednesday Night Misfits
High Games

Gary MacDonald 222
Toyota of Batavia Thursday 5-Man
High Series

Rich Wagner 290-258-246--794
Steve Krna 268-235-246--749
Mike Lambert 259-238-245--742
Geoff Harloff 277-248--734
Tom Baker 278--696
Jason Gallo 289--692
Marshall Merle 233-267--677
Rob Stefani 234-235--674
Nate Cordes 226-268--667
Gary Kuchler 246--643
Jeremy Vallance 226-221--635
James Townsend 245--633
Matt Balduf 632
Josh Elliott 621
Vin Pontillo 226--618
Jason Quilliam 617
Nick LaFarnara 237--617
Roger Stone 224--616
Rick Underhill 612
Brian Green 226--611
Denny Rogers 220--610
Chuck Bobo 225--609
High Games
Jennifer Johnston 191
Wednesday Men’s Handicap
High Series

Rodney Jopson 245--678
Joseph Scott 234--657
Jeff Parton 267--653
Laurie Morgante 257--651
Jason Heimlich 235--636
Frank Stumpf 223--616
Charles Gelsomino 266--614
Brandon Fisher 610
High Games
Dillon Giboo 240
Thursday Owls
High Series

Frank Jarkiewicz 277--725
Tom Sardou 235--674
John Hertz 615
Frank Stumpf 223--600
Laurie Morgante 216--595
High Games
Gary MacDonald 257
High Series

Kevin Wezeli 276--756
Frank Jarkiewicz 259--706
Colleen Pimm 213--561
High Games
Robert Cassidy 223
County Line Stone
High Series

Dean Cadieux Jr. 246-299--751
Frank Jarkiewicz 258-247--706
Bruce Kraus 300--687
Paul Spiotta 223-249--674
Scott Gibson 258--659
Aaron Chamberlain 227-224--655
Tom Fluker 244-224--642
Roger Stone 246--631
Chauncey Vanice 222--616
Rick Saunders 223--615
Mike Lyons 230--607
High Games
Dean Cadieux Sr. 236
Charlie Pangrazio 227

High Games


January 4, 2018 - 8:16am
posted by Mike Pettinella in sports, Bowling.

belmo_1.jpgPutting the finishing touches on one of the most exciting PBA Tour television finals in the organization’s 60-year history, Australia’s Jason Belmonte defeated Jesper Svensson of Sweden, 238-225, for the PBA World Championship title.

The finals of the tournament, which took place in November during the World Series of Bowling IX in Reno, Nev., were telecast last Sunday on ESPN.

The victory marked Belmonte’s third major championship in 2017, setting a PBA Tour record, and was his ninth career major crown.  It also virtually locked up another PBA Player of the Year title (voting will take place later this month) for the 34-year-old two-hander and added another $60,000 to his bank account.

Furthermore, Belmonte moved into third place on the PBA’s list of all-time major champions behind PBA legends Earl Anthony and Pete Weber, who both won 10 majors.

As far as the show itself, two matches were decided in sudden-death roll-offs – the opening match between Matt Sanders of Evansville, Ind., and Kyle Troup of Taylorsville, S.C., and the semifinal match between Belmonte and Cheektowaga’s Ryan Ciminelli.

In the first match, Sanders and Troup finished in a 248-248 tie, before Troup struck in the extra frame to edge Sanders, who left a 7-pin.  Ciminelli then topped Troup, 193-180, before battling Belmonte to a 257-257 tie.

Unfortunately for the Western New Yorker, he left the 2-5-6 on his first shot in OT after Belmonte had left a 7-pin.

Then in the title match against left-side two-hander Svensson, Belmonte got a break when he struck in the fifth frame despite the finger grip coming out of the ball. The match was close throughout, but Belmonte came through in the 10th frame with a pair of strikes to seal the deal.

Svensson earned $30,000, Ciminelli $25,000, Troup $20,000 and Sanders $15,000.

ESPN’s coverage continues at 1 p.m. this Sunday with the World Bowling Tour Women’s and Men’s Finals. Competitors are Malaysia’s Shalin Zulkifli, Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, N.Y., and Diana Zavjalova of Latvia, and Marshall Kent of Yakima, Wash.; Svensson and Belmonte.


The local bowlers on the Beat the Champ TV show at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia ran into a “buzzsaw,” and were unable to unseat "the champ," Dana Voytovich of Cheektowaga. The show was taped on Nov. 29 and televised on Dec. 23-24 on WBBZ-TV (MeTV).

Voytovich concluded a perfect month – running his winning streak to eight matches – by knocking off Batavian Rich Wagner, 268-213; Brockport’s Chris Bardol, 245-237, and Batavian Rob Stefani, 255-185.

The victories enabled Voytovich to enter this month’s competition at Rapids Bowling Center in Niagara Falls as the champ. Those shows will be televised on Jan. 6, 13, 20 (repeated on Jan. 7, 14, 21).

The fourth show from Batavia featured eight youth bowlers form the Turnbull Heating Junior League at Mancuso’s, bowling as boy-girl doubles teams.

Emma Miller and James Townsend emerged victorious by defeating Corinne Saluste and Sam Miller in the final match. Miller/Saluste had advanced with wins over Samantha Balbi and Benjamin Sputore, and Tara Clattenburg and Skylar Laesser.

All in all, the Batavia-area bowlers competed at a high level, and put on a good show for the viewers.


Genesee Region USBC men and women bowlers have a chance to see how they measure up against the best in the association this weekend by entering the 64th GRUSBC Scratch Memorial Tournament at Letchworth Pines in Portageville.

Qualifying squad (four games) times are noon and 3 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. on Sunday. One in five from each squad will advance to four-game semifinals and, from there, the five bowlers with the highest eight-game total pinfall will advance to the stepladder finals.

Two different oil patterns will be used -- the 39-foot Kegel “Middle Road” during qualifying and the 45-foot Kegel “Route 66” during the semifinals and finals. First place, based on 80 entries, is $1,000; the entry fee is $55 and re-entry is allowed. To enter, call 585-861-0404 or send an email to [email protected].

Other tournaments this weekend include the Scott Whittier Memorial three-person, no-tap on Saturday at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion (squads are at 1, 3, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.) and the 60-and-over Tour at noon Sunday at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

While one hopes that all tournaments are successful, having two other events the same weekend as a major GRUSBC tournament forces bowlers to choose – and that’s not a good thing.

Since the GRUSBC schedule is out before the season begins, it shouldn’t be difficult for promoters of other tournaments to avoid any conflicts. It’s simply a matter of common sense and working together – and that’s something to remember when setting up tournaments for 2018-19.


-- Kevin Gray Jr. of Warsaw captured the $700 first prize at the Domm’s Christmas Eve Sweeper at Domm’s Bowling Center in Rochester, rolling a 300 game during the qualifying round and surviving through three eliminator rounds. Other GRUSBC bowlers cashing were Tom Rohl of Le Roy, Rob Husted of Spencerport and Scott Gray of Warsaw.

-- Lefty Bob Santini opened the New Year with a bang by rolling a perfect game – his second of the season – in the Monday Night Merchants League at his (he’s the proprietor) Mount Morris Lanes. Santini now has 11 USBC-certified 300 games.

And on Tuesday night, Dave Emler of Rochester rolled a 300 game and 759 series in the G&W Vending League at Rose Garden Bowl.

-- Matt Slocum of Perry and Curtis Foss of Medina cashed at the Mike & Ruth Rose New Year’s Day scratch tournament at Bowl-A-Roll Lanes in Rochester, with both bowing out in the early rounds of the finals. PBA standout Brad Angelo of Lockport pocketed the $1,500 top prize, rolling a 299 game in the title match.

-- GRUSBC directors welcomed Steve Krna of Alexander to the local association board at their meeting last Saturday. An avid league bowler, Krna is president of Genesee Patrons insurance Cooperative Insurance Co. in Batavia.

The board voted to bring back the GRUSBC Invitational tournament, a 64-bowler “by invitation only” handicap singles event, and tentatively scheduled it for Sept. 29 at Mancuso Bowling Center.

Also, the board is accepting nominees for the GRUSBC Hall of Fame through Feb. 1. Nomination forms can be found at www.bowlgr.com.

-- Following a successful first half of its first season, the Sunday Roll-Offs league at Medina Lanes is gearing up for its second half, starting this Sunday at 10 a.m.

The format of the USBC-sanctioned handicap singles league is three games of qualifying with bowlers divided into groups by their averages. Winners from each group then bowl one more game to determine the weekly champion.

Additionally, points are awarded each week, which are worth prize money at the end of the season. The weekly fee is $20. For more information, call Medina Lanes at 585-318-4474.

-- The Genesee Region Youth Travel League reached its halfway point last Sunday at Mancuso Bowling Center and the Rose Garden I team from Bergen continues to hold a 12.5-point lead over second place Batavia Strike Force.

Weekly leaders were Josiah Yantz of Scopano’s Lanes with a 234 game and 660 series, James Townsend of Batavia Strike Force, 222—638; Ben Lennox of Oak Orchard I, 233—617; Paige Snook of Oak Orchard I, 192—554; Corinne Saluste of Strike Force, 205—554, and Logan Cadieux of Scopano’s, 177—476.

The league bowls again on Jan. 21 at Rose Garden Bowl.

-- The GRUSBC Adult-Junior Doubles Tournament is set for Jan. 12-14 at Mancuso Bowling Center, with squad times at 7 p.m. on Jan. 12, and noon and 3 p.m. on Jan. 13 and Jan. 14. Competition will be in two handicap divisions -- based on youth bowlers ages: 12 & under and 13 & over. The entry fee is $40 per team. To enter, contact Tom Fluker at [email protected]

December 21, 2017 - 8:11am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.


If you happen to care about the future of the sport of bowling, you will be thrilled to read about the accomplishments of youth bowlers in our area and across the state.

Starting close to home, 18-year-old Naomi Hyde of Le Roy (she’ll be 19 on Dec. 30) recorded the highest USBC-certified three-game series in the history of Legion Lanes in Le Roy on Dec. 11 when she rolled a 730 set while substituting in the Monday Ladies Jackpot League.

The right-hander’s games were 258-273-199. The three-game total eclipses the 709 registered by longtime LeRoyan Chris Vescovi in 2002.

Naomi (in photo above) wasn’t sure of the sequence of strikes, but said she got a bit nervous in the second game “because I was hoping to bowl a 280 game.”

She came close with the 273 – which topped her previous high game of 269.

“I lost the line a bit in the third game,” she said, “as I had to adjust as the lanes weren’t as oily.”

After a slow start to the game, she regrouped at the end to post the 199, earning well-deserved applause from her father, Mickey, an avid bowler who came to the lanes to watch.

Naomi said that Vescovi, who bowls in the league, and the other ladies were quick to congratulate her.

She was bowling on a team with Charlene Price and Betty Sue Pelton. She said she is averaging 161 in a Sunday mixed league -- bowling with her dad -- and 195 for 12 games on the Monday league.

Naomi said she bowled in the Legion Lanes youth program since she was 5 years old. After graduating from high school, she is working a couple part-time jobs and said she will be attending Monroe Community College next month.

Her sister, Samantha, continues to bowl in the Le Roy youth league as well as the Genesee Region Youth Travel League.

Hilton Girl Sets Record with 831 Series

While Naomi was making headlines in the Genesee Region, Hilton freshman Elena Carr is in the national spotlight after a high school-record setting 831 series – also on Dec. 11 – in a Monroe County League match against Penfield at AMF Terrace Garden Lanes in Rochester.

Elena, 14, rolled 265-300-266, breaking the previous mark set of 826 by Kristina Frahm of Illinois in January 2007. She has been bowling for 10 years and has been on the Hilton varsity team since seventh grade and also bowls on a travel team on weekends.

By the way, her brother Brad, 16, who also is on the Hilton bowling team, rolled his first 300 game in a sanctioned morning league in September.

Continuing with the young high rollers theme, 14-year-old freshman Zachary Bogholtz of Nassau (Albany USBC) posted his fourth 300 game and first 800 series recently.

The freshman member of the Columbia High School bowling team recently registered his third perfect game of the year and first 800 series – 300-279-234—813.

It sure is encouraging to see that young people are embracing the sport and excelling at it as well. Hopefully, more adult bowlers – parents and coaches – will make it a priority to volunteer their time to helping these kids improve and to give back to a sport that has given them so much over the years.


The Rose Garden I team of Bergen rolled past Batavia Fire & Ice, 18.5 to .5, last Sunday at Legion Lanes in Le Roy to expand its lead over Batavia Strike Force to 7.5 points after six of 14 sessions of the Genesee Region Youth Travel League.

Devon Zinter, Madelynn Pimm and Michael Sardou all bowled over their averages, with Zinter (141 average) shooting 501, Pimm (124 average) rolling 461 and Sardou (126 average) posting 398.

High scores for the week:

Boys – Matt Hurlburt 223—651, Skylar Laesser 232—597, James Townsend 587, Ben Lennox 221.

Girls – Paige Snook 185—517, Samantha Hyde 179—486, Logan Cadieux 168—480.

The league bowls again on Dec. 31 at Mancuso Bowling Center.


The Beat the Champ show from Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia featuring Batavians Rich Wagner and Rob Stefani and Brockport’s Chris Bardol is up next on WBBZ-TV (MeTV), airing this Saturday at 4 p.m. and repeated on Sunday at 11 p.m.

The reigning "champ," two-hander Dana Voytovich of Cheektowaga, puts his five-match winning streak on the line, facing left-hander Wagner in the first match. The winner will take on Bardol in the second match, with the winner advancing to meet Stefani in the show’s final match.

Mike Pettinella, bowling writer for The Batavian, joins hosts Paul Peck and Sue Nawojski for commentary on this weekend's show.

On Dec. 30-31, eight members of the Turnbull Heating Junior League at Mancuso Bowling Center will be featured on the show.

The competition was taped on Nov. 29.


Cousins Paul Spiotta and Fred Gravanda of Batavia manufactured a couple “firsts” last Sunday in the 60-and-Over Tour tournament at Bowl-A-Roll Lanes in Rochester.

Spiotta, bowling in his second event since turning 60, rolled the Tour’s first 800 series in the qualifying round – 279-267-256—802 – and Gravanda, a regular member of the Tour, captured his first victory by defeating John Feola of Rochester and Ken Ball of Avon in the finals.

After his big series, Spiotta posted a 207 game in the 12-man semifinals, but it wasn’t quite good enough to advance (as half the field moves on).

Gravanda, however, who qualified with a 664 series for having the best score in the 65-69 age group, went on to bowl 268 and 246 to reach the three-man final round.

In the finals, Gravanda posted 211, edging Feola by seven pins and defeating Ball by 33 pins. Prior to Sunday’s tournament, Gravanda had several runner-up finishes.

Bob Hodgson of Medina (791) and Joe Trigilio of Attica (705) also qualified for the semifinals but lost in the first and second round, respectively, with Trigilio officially placing fourth.


Defending champion Scott Culp of Lima is in fine form as the 64th Genesee Region USBC Scratch Memorial Tournament nears. The singles event is set for Jan. 6-7 at Letchworth Pines in Portageville.

Culp, who won last year’s tournament at Medina Lanes, is averaging better than 240 in the Wednesday Night JCI League at Livingston Lanes in Geneseo, with a 300 game and a pair of 800 series (805 and 837) to his credit.

The Scratch Memorial offers a $1,000 top prize, based on 80 entries, and the entry fee is $55. Qualifying squads are noon and 3 p.m. on Jan. 6 and 10 a.m. on Jan. 7, with one in five bowlers from each squad advancing to the semifinals.

The tournament features two oil patterns – the 39-foot Kegel “Middle Road” during qualifying and the 45-foot Kegel “Route 66” during the semifinals and finals.

To enter, call Mike Pettinella at 585-861-0404 or send an email to [email protected].


To all my Pin Points readers and to all in the Genesee Region, have a blessed and Merry Christmas and Happy Kwanzaa -- and a Happy New Year. And to all my Jewish readers, I hope you had a wonderful Hanukkah (which ended on Wednesday).

The next column will be posted on Jan. 4.


COKE VS. PEPSI: Members of the StrikeForce Academy team in the North Pole League at Mancuso Bowling Center had some fun with team captain Tom Fluker, center, who also is a longtime Pepsi employee. Members of the team, which rolled a 1,201 scratch game recently in the league, are, from left, Tom Baker, Nate Wright, Fluker, Jerry Harding and Eric Kraus.

December 7, 2017 - 8:32am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.


Just like the North wind that has brought about some wintery weather in our area, the BBA North team cooled off the BBA South to post yet another victory in the annual Karl Marth Cup competition.

The team of Medina and Albion area bowlers stormed back from an early deficit by dominating the Singles event and went on to defeat the team of Batavia-area bowlers, 64 ½-58 ½, on Saturday at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield.

The win avenges a 10-point loss to the South at Medina Lanes last year and makes it six victories in the past seven years for the North, which now leads the series, 14-10.

The competition is dedicated to the memory of the late Karl Marth, a standout tournament bowler in the old Batavia Bowling Association.

Led by Jim Foss’ 514 score for two games, the North shook off a 17-7 deficit in Doubles and an even 12-12 split in Baker Doubles to take 32 ½ out of a possible 48 points in the Singles event.

As a result, the North took a seven-point lead into the final event – Baker Team -- which was won by the South by a 14-13 score.

Foss earned the Scott Wright Memorial Outstanding Bowler Award for averaging 242 for his four individual games.

Also posting Singles’ wins for the North team were Mike Allis (417 for two games), Roger Allis (484), Rob Sease (413), Scott Gibson (434), Rich Culver (467), Jason Mahnke (418) and Hayden Allis (406).

Four South bowlers won their Singles matches – Paul Spiotta (416), Todd Mortellaro (416), Geoff Harloff (451) and Mickey Hyde (432).

Other members of the winning team were Scott Allis, Aaron Verheyn, Mike Lavender, Scott Shields and captain Tom Allis.

Scott Allis and Mahnke combined for a 968 score for two games in Doubles.

For the South, Dean Cadieux Jr. led the way with a 236 average, followed by Hyde’s 227. Other members were Brett Van Duser, captain Ed Doody, Jim Pursel, Steve O’Dell, Mike Pettinella, Gregg Wolff and Rick Saunders.

Photo at top -- BBA North team, winner of this year's Karl Marth Cup. Front from left, Jim Foss, Jason Mahnke, Mike Allis, Rob Sease, Scott Allis, Roger Allis; back, Rich Culver, Scott Gibson, Tom Allis, Hayden Allis, Aaron Verheyn, Mike Lavender.


The first of four Beat the Champ bowling shows from Mancuso Bowling Center will be televised this weekend on WBBZ-TV (MeTV). Telecasts are scheduled for 4 p.m. Saturday and repeated at 11 p.m. Sunday.

This weekend’s show features champion John Danielewicz of Sanborn and challengers Josh Vogt of West Seneca, Dana Voytovich of Cheektowaga and Jeremy Zimmerman of Ransomville.

The second show (Dec. 16-17) will feature the champion from this weekend’s show against Dan Richbart of Clarence, Chuck Jagodzinski of Lancaster and Joseph Pohlman of East Amherst.

Batavians Rich Wagner and Rob Stefani, along with Brockport’s Chris Bardol, will be competing on the Dec. 23-24 telecast, and that will be followed by a youth doubles event featuring members of the Turnbull Heating Junior League on Dec. 30-31.


Sunday afternoon professional bowling returns to ESPN this Sunday (1 p.m.) with the USA vs. The World team competition -- an event that took place during last month’s PBA World Series of Bowling IX in Reno, Nev.

Representing the USA are Kyle Troup, Bill O’Neill, Ryan Ciminelli (of Cheektowaga), Tom Smallwood and Matt McNeil. PBA Hall of Famer Marshall Holman is the captain.

The World team, captained by England’s Stuart Williams, is comprised of Jason Belmonte of Australia, Jesper Svennson of Sweden, Dom Barrett of England, Thomas Larsen of Denmark and Rafiq Ismail of Malaysia.

Subsequent telecasts are the Chameleon and Shark Championships on Sunday, Dec. 17 beginning at 1 p.m.; the Cheetah and Scorpion Championships on Dec. 24 at 1 p.m.; PBA World Championship on Dec. 31 at 1 p.m. and the World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s Finals on Jan. 7 at 1 p.m.


The Rose Garden Bowl I team of Devon Zinter, Madelynn Pimm, Brooke Jarkiewicz and Michael Sardou holds a 2 ½ point lead over Batavia Strike Force after four sessions of the GR Youth Travel League.

The 13-team league resumes competition at 12:30 p.m. this Sunday at Mancuso Bowling Center.

Rose Garden I defeated Mount Morris, 15-4, in recent action at its home center, while Batavia Strike Force took 16 of 19 points against Rose Garden II.

Individually, Skylar Laesser of Batavia Strike Force led the boys with a 244 game and 685 series while Matt Hurlburt of Perry posted 267—683 and Josiah Yantz of Scopano’s Lanes had 279—624.

Paige Snook of Oak Orchard Bowl I led the girls with a 506 series, followed by Samantha Hyde of Le Roy Legion Lanes with 500 and Haylee Thornley of Batavia X Factor with 496.


Left-hander Dan Vick, arguably the top bowler in Rochester, captured his second career Rochester NY USBC Masters title on Sunday with a 279-191 win over Sam Capizzi Jr. at AMF Empire Lanes.

Vick defeated four bowlers in the step-ladder finals, including USBC Open Championships titlist Mike Rose Jr.

In a 60-and-Over Tour event on Nov. 26 at Pleasure Lanes in Hilton, four Genesee Region USBC bowlers cashed – Paul Spiotta and Fred Gravanda of Batavia, Al Vlietstra of Geneseo and Bob Hodgson of Medina.

Rick Jewell of Rochester won his second straight 60-and-Over Tour event.

The Genesee Region USBC has announced that the 64th GRUSBC Scratch Memorial Tournament will take place on Jan. 6-7 at Letchworth Pines in Portageville.

Qualifying squads are set for noon and 3 p.m. on Jan. 6 and 10 a.m. on Jan. 4. Semifinals and finals will follow the 10 a.m. squad. The entry fee is $55 and first place, based on 80 entries, is $1,000.

To enter, send an email to [email protected] or call 585-861-0404.

For a list of other local tournaments in December and January, scroll down to the Nov. 24 Pin Points column.

November 30, 2017 - 8:55am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling, Beat The Champ.


The Beat the Champ TV show cast and production crew rolled into Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia on Wednesday to tape four shows that will run in December, two of which featured local adult and youth standouts.

Family, friends, longtime bowlers, fans of the WBBZ-TV (MeTV) telecast and interested observers turned out to watch the competition on lanes 19-20.

Batavians Rich Wagner and Rob Stefani – who registered a 300 game in league play earlier this week – along with Brockport’s Chris Bardol (owner of The North Pole Restaurant in Batavia) competed on the third show and eight youth bowlers from the Turnbull Heating Junior League at Mancuso’s participated in a Doubles event on the fourth show (see photo below).

The Wagner-Bardol-Stefani show will be telecast at 4 p.m. Dec. 23 (repeated at 11 p.m. Dec. 24) and the youth special will be telecast at the same times on Dec. 30 and Dec. 31.

All of the seven other bowlers in the regular shows were from the Buffalo area – reigning champ John Danielwicz, and qualifiers Josh Vogt, Dana Voytovich, Jeremy Zimmerman, Dan Richbart, Chuck Jagodzinski and Joseph Pohlman.

The first two shows will air on Dec. 9-10 and Dec. 16-17.

(Note: The Batavian will report the results of the matches after each show is televised).

The size of the audience grew as the show with the local bowlers neared its starting time, around 2 p.m.

For Tim Shanks of Elba, a former league bowler, seeing all the TV lights, cameras and set was an eye-opener.

“This is much more than I figured,” said Shanks, who said he watches the show regularly. “I’m happy the show is on again; it brings back memories of the old Beat the Champ. And I’m just glad that it’s so close to home.”

Beat the Champ airs from 12 different bowling centers, mostly in the Buffalo area, throughout the year, with four shows each month from a particular center.

Stars of the show are commentator Paul Peck, analyst Sue Nawojski and scorekeeper/host Janelle Sabin. Mike Pettinella, New York State USBC association manager and bowling writer for The Batavian, joined Peck and Nawojski as a commentator on the Wagner-Stefani-Bardol show.

Qualifiers for the show took place on Nov. 11-12, with the top nine bowlers making the TV show – bowlers 1-3 on the first show, 4-6 on the second show and 7-9 on the third show. Coincidentally, Wagner, Bardol and Stefani finished in seventh through ninth place, and as a result, were grouped on the same telecast.

This was the second straight appearance for Wagner, who earned $250 last year, and Bardol, who competed in a coed doubles special event.

Photo at top -- Rich Wagner, left, talks with Chris Bardol as Rob Stefani poses for some still photos prior to their Beat the Champ TV show at Mancuso Bowling Center on Wednesday afternoon.







Photos under the story -- The crowd included Rich Wagner's father, Rich, in the front row, and family and friends; Bardol is interviewed for post-production purposes by Sue Nawojski; longtime Batavian Tom Stokes (in red sweater and wearing an autographed French Connection Sabres hat) posed for a photo with Nawojski, Paul Peck and Janelle Sabin; local competitors Rich Wagner, Chris Bardol and Rob Stefani; youth participants James Townsend, Corinne Saluste, Emma Miller, Samantha Balbi, Benjamin Sputore, Tara Clattenburg, Skylar Laesser and Sam Miller; the on-air cast opening the youth special show. Photos by Mike Pettinella.

November 24, 2017 - 7:53am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

Three Genesee Region USBC members, including Batavian Rich Wagner for a second straight year, have qualified to appear on the Beat the Champ TV show, a regular Saturday afternoon feature on WBBZ-TV (MeTV).

Wagner, who made $250 on the show in 2016, will be joined by fellow Batavian Rob Stefani and Rochester resident Chris Bardol (owner of the North Pole Restaurant in Batavia) on the third of four shows being taped on Wednesday, Nov. 29 at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

The public is invited to watch the taping, which starts around 10 a.m., free of charge.

Ironically, Wagner, Stefani and Bardol qualified in the seventh through ninth positions this year, and all will appear on the same show – along with the reigning champion, who will be determined from the first two shows.  The Wagner-Stefani-Bardol show will be televised at 4 p.m. Dec. 23 (repeated at 11 p.m. Dec. 24).

The first two shows feature Buffalo-area competitors – Josh Vogt, Dana Voytovich and Jeremy Zimmerman and the champion (to be aired on Dec. 9-10) and Dan Richbart, Chuck Jagodzinski and Joseph Pohlman and the champion (to be aired on Dec. 16-17).

Youth bowlers from the Turnbull Heating Junior League at Mancuso's will compete in a doubles event on the fourth show, which also will be the last show taped on Nov. 29. Selected to participate are Emma Miller, James Townsend, Tara Clattenburg, Skylar Laesser, Corinne Saluste, Sam Miller, Samantha Balbi and Benjamin Sputore.

While the show provides a certain amount of publicity for Mancuso Bowling Center, center management can’t be happy about the number of bowlers who competed in the eight qualifying squads. There were only 63 entries this year, 40 less than last year.

The way it is set up, the bowling center receives only $8 per $30 entry, the rest going for the $1,400 in prize money paid out on the shows. For this year, Mancuso’s fell short of that $1,400 mark by $14.

And that doesn’t take into consideration the $6,000 that is put up by the participating bowling centers for production costs.

I applaud the proprietor, Rick Mancuso, for taking part but unless WBBZ-TV implements some changes that benefit the bowling centers, I wouldn’t blame him for opting out next year.



They call him “Mr. 900” and “Johnny Pins” for his remarkable achievement – a USBC-certified 900 series in 2012 – and now they can call him “champion” of the 10th annual Triple O Mechanical Handicap Singles Tournament at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

John Martorella Sr. of Rochester, proprietor of Domm Brothers bowling center, defeated Frank Jarkiewicz of Byron, 222-207, in the title match to take the $400 first prize on Nov. 12.

(Photo -- Tom Sardou, left, Rose Garden Bowl proprietor; Martorella and Jarkiewicz).

Martorella qualified 13th with a 695 series – the top 16 out of 41 entries advanced to the eliminator-style finals – and followed that with games of 244, 246 and 257 to reach the championship match.

Jarkiewicz was the ninth-best qualifier with 715, and then rolled 221, 249 and 261 (receiving four pins handicap each game) to reach the final match.  He earned $200 for his efforts.

Other cashers were John Merriweather of Rochester and Brian Hall of Macedon, $100 each; Kevin Gray Sr. of Honeoye Falls, Kai Clark of Rochester, Jeff Dewar of Rochester and Laurie Morgante of Bergen, $60 apiece; and Harris Busmire of Bergen, Pat Brick of Buffalo, Rob Stefani of Batavia, and Rochester residents Scott Prince, Don Perrault, Peter Pilaroscia, Caycee Landers and Scott Dingman, $45 each.



Former Cheektowaga resident Liz Johnson, arguably the greatest professional women bowler ever, has become the second woman to win a Professional Bowlers Association Tour title.

The 43-year-old right-hander defeated Anthony Pepe of Elmhurst, N.Y., 220-206, last Saturday at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev., to win the PBA Chameleon Championship – one of the several tournaments conducted as part of the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX.

The finals will be broadcast at 1 p.m. Dec. 17 on ESPN.

Johnson, who now resides in Illinois, joins Kelly Kulick of Union, N.J., who won the 2010 PBA Tournament of Champions, as the only women to capture titles on the PBA Tour.

Her reaction, as reported by a PBA publicist, was one of jubilation.

 “It feels absolutely amazing,” said Johnson, who also finished 14th in the PBA World Championship this week in Reno. “It’s officially one of the best bowling days of my life and probably the icing on the cake as far as my career goes. I’ve been very lucky to have the career that I’ve had. I never thought having the chance to win a PBA title would come when it did. It’s been an awesome journey.”

With the victory and its $20,000 first prize, Johnson added to her remarkable 2017. This year, she has three PWBA titles (two majors), including her sixth U.S. Women’s Open and the Go Bowling PWBA Players Championship, a third consecutive PWBA Player of the Year award and the 2017 PBA Chameleon Championship.

Here are the finalists of the other WSOB tournaments (all of which have been completed but won’t be televised until later):

PBA Shark Championship, 2 p.m., Dec. 17 – Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash.; Tom Daugherty, Riverview, Fla.; Richie Teece, England; Charlie Brown Jr., Grandville, Mich.

PBA Cheetah Championship, 1 p.m. Dec. 24 – Sam Cooley, Australia; Thomas Larsen, Denmark; Jesper Svensson, Sweden; Jason Belmonte, Australia.

Pepsi PBA Scorpion Championship, 2 p.m. Dec. 24 – Jason Belmonte, Australia; EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind.; Shawn Maldonado, Houston; Brandon Novak, Chillicothe, Ohio.

PBA World Championship, 1 p.m. Dec. 31 – 1, Jesper Svensson, Sweden; 2, Jason Belmonte, Australia;  Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y.; 4, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C.; 5, Matt Sanders, Evansville, Ind.

World Bowling Tour Finals, 1 p.m. Jan. 7 – Men, Svensson, Belmonte, Kent; Women, Diana Zavjalova of Latvia, Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, N.Y., and Malaysia’s Shalin Zulki.


The 24th installment of the Karl Marth Cup series pitting bowlers from the north and south parts of the old Batavia Bowling Association takes place at 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2 at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield.

Last year, the South team won, ending a five-year winning streak for the North, which leads the series, 13-10. Competition takes place in Doubles, Singles, Baker-style Doubles and Baker-style Team.

The public is invited to watch.

Team rosters are as follows:

North -- Scott Allis, Roger Allis, Aaron Verheyn, Scott Shields, Scott Gibson, Mike Lavender, Rob Sease, Jim Foss, Richard Culver, Jason Mahnke, Hayden Allis, Mike Allis and non-playing captain Tom Allis.

South – Dean Cadieux Jr., captain Ed Doody, Geoff Harloff, Mickey Hyde, Todd Mortellaro, Steve O’Dell, Mike Pettinella, Jim Pursel, Rick Saunders, Paul Spiotta, Brett Van Duser and Gregg Wolff.


Tournaments over the next several weeks:

-- Sunday, Nov. 26: 60-and-Over Tour, Pleasure Lanes, Hilton. Open to bowlers 60 and over, the scratch tournament gets under way at noon. The entry fee is $40 and walk-ins are permitted.

-- Saturday, Dec. 9 – Scratch Doubles, Legion Lanes, Le Roy. Squad times are at 11:45 a.m., 1:15 p.m. and 2:45 p.m. with two-game qualifiers followed by the top eight teams advancing to head-to-head match play. First place is $800, based on 36 entries, and the entry fee is $70. Call 716-474-7960 to enter.

-- Saturday, Dec. 16: “Blind Draw” Doubles, Medina Lanes. Participants will draw for their partners; bowling one squad starting at 4 p.m. Handicap is based on 90 percent of 220. The top teams (number depending upon entries) will advance to match play. Call 585-318-4474 to sign up.

-- Saturday, Jan. 6: 6th annual Scott Whittier Memorial, Oak Orchard Bowl, Albion. Squads are at 1, 3, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. for this three-person, handicap no-tap tournament conducted to benefit the Scott Whittier Scholarship Foundation. First place is $600; entry fee is $60 per team. Call 585-589-6900 to sign up.

November 22, 2017 - 2:18pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling.


Batavian Paul Spiotta became only the second bowler to win a GRUSBC Masters and Senior Masters title when he captured the 12th annual Genesee Region USBC Senior Masters tournament on Nov. 11 at Medina Lanes.

The 60-year-old right-hander defeated 50-year-old lefty Mike Johnson, also of Batavia, in an exciting final match, winning a ninth and 10th frame roll-off, 59-40, after both bowlers put up scores of 246.


Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column will appear on Friday this week.


Spiotta strung four strikes before leaving one pin on his final ball, forcing Johnson to get three strikes to win. Johnson got the first two -- the second one on the cross -- before leaving a solid 7 pin, setting up the roll-off.

In "overtime," after Johnson spared, Spiotta delivered three straight strikes to come away victorious.

Spiotta said he was “very focused” throughout the tournament, and noted that his carry got better after the qualifying round.

“I had a nice line to the pocket but I was also tripping a few 4-pins when needed plus I had a crossover strike and a cave-in strike that really helped,” he said.

After he and Johnson tied, all Spiotta thought about was coming up with strikes in the roll-off.

“All I knew was that if I could keep striking, I’d win and that’s what happened,” he said. “Hats off to Mike Johnson in his first Senior Masters, he really bowled very well down the stretch.”

The victory was worth $260 for Spiotta, a former GRUSBC association president, who averaged 226 for his seven games -- qualifying 10th with 630 before posting 485 for two games in the second round and 223 for his one game in the third round.

He also won a free entry into the GRUSBC Masters in February and a plaque from Joe’s Awards & Trophies. The event drew 41 entrants.

Johnson earned $150 for placing second while Jim Foss of Medina won $100 for placing third. Johnson defeated Foss, 267-192, in the first game of the three-bowler stepladder finals to earn the right to face top-seeded Spiotta.

Jim Pursel of Batavia, Rick Saunders of Batavia and Phil Schepis of Medina finished in the fourth through sixth spots, winning $70 each, while Bill Logan of Albion, Fred Gravanda of Batavia, Bob Hodgson of Medina, Scott Shields of Batavia, John Wolff of Batavia and Joe Trigilio of Attica also cashed.

Spiotta joins Gravanda, his cousin, as the only Masters and Senior Masters champions.

For complete tournament statistics, go to www.bowlgr.com.

Photo at top - Paul Spiotta and Mike Johnson.

November 9, 2017 - 7:04am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling, PBA Tour.

Now in its ninth year, the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling has reached a new level of participation as a record 26 countries are being represented at the 12-day event that got under way on Tuesday at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev.

Officials of the Go Bowling! PBA Tour (it has a new primary sponsor this season) increased the field from 185 to 195 bowlers – American and international standouts who will be competing in four “animal pattern” tournaments as well as the PBA World Championship, USA vs. the World Team Championship and World Bowling Tour Finals.

The final rounds of all seven of those events take place on Nov. 17-19. ESPN will televise all seven finals starting on Dec. 10 and running through Jan. 7.

Here is the WSOB taping (Pacific time) and ESPN telecast (Eastern time) schedule:

Nov. 17, 6 p.m. – USA vs. The World team competition (ESPN air date Dec. 10, 1 p.m.)

Nov. 18, noon – PBA Chameleon Championship presented by Reno Tahoe USA (ESPN air date, Dec. 17, 1 p.m.)

Nov. 18, 2:30 p.m. – PBA Shark Championship presented by Xtra Frame (ESPN air date Dec. 17, 2 p.m. ET)

Nov. 18, 4:15 p.m. – PBA Cheetah Championship presented by PBA Bowling Challenge Mobile Game (ESPN air date Dec. 24, 1 p.m.)

Nov. 18, 6 p.m. – Pepsi PBA Scorpion Championship presented by GoBowling.com (ESPN air date Dec. 24, 2 p.m.)

Nov. 19, noon – PBA World Championship (ESPN air date Dec. 31, 1 p.m.)

Nov. 19, 3:30 p.m. – World Bowling Tour Finals presented by PBA (ESPN air date Jan. 7, 1 p.m. ET)

For those who like watching bowling on their computer or mobile devices, Xtra Frame, the PBA’s online streaming service, will provide around 100 hours of live coverage during the qualifying and match play rounds. For more information about Xtra Frame, go to www.xtraframe.tv.

Some interesting notes about this year’s WSOB:

-- EJ Tackett of Huntington, Ind.; Jason Belmonte of Australia, and Rhino Page of Orlando, Fla., will have a chance to add another major title in 2017. Tackett is the defending champion in the PBA World Championship, while Belmonte won the PBA Players Championship and USBC Masters, and Page recently captured the U.S. Open at Flamingo Bowl in Liverpool (near Syracuse) on Nov. 1.

-- Tackett and Belmonte each have three tour victories this year and are the favorites for Player of the Year honors heading into the WSOB IX.  But, with multiple events on the schedule, someone else could vault into contention.

-- Five PBA Hall of Famers are among the 195 participants. They are household names Parker Bohn III, Norm Duke, Amleto Monacelli, Pete Weber, Walter Ray Williams Jr. and the newly-elected Chris Barnes.

All but Barnes (he’s only 47) are active on the PBA50 Tour, which features around 13 tournaments in the spring and summer months.  It’s too bad that the PBA50 Tour can’t latch on to a TV contract as I’m sure that longtime bowling fans, such as myself, would love to see these players in action.

CLICK HERE for the schedule of ESPN telecasts of the PBA Tour.


Local bowlers have an opportunity to show their talents on TV by entering the “Beat the Champ” qualifiers this weekend at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

Seven qualifying squads are scheduled – Friday at 5 and 7 p.m.; Saturday at noon, 2 and 4 p.m., and Sunday at 2 and 4 p.m. The top 24 will advance to a roll-off at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, with the top nine from their advancing to the TV show.

Producers from WBBZ-TV (MeTv) have rescheduled the taping of four shows (which will air in December) to Nov. 29 (not Dec. 2 as previously announced).

The first three shows will feature the adult qualifiers vying for prize money; the fourth show will showcase some of the best youth bowlers from the Turnbull Junior League at Mancuso’s.

Entry fee for each qualifying round is $30. To enter, call Mancuso Bowling Center at 343-1319.


Medina Lanes will host the 12th annual Genesee Region USBC Senior Masters Tournament this Saturday, with qualifying times at 12:30 and 2 p.m. The top 12, including one out of four 60-and-over bowlers, will advance to the finals at 3:30 p.m.

First place, based on 48 entries, is $300 and a free entry into the GRUSBC Masters on Feb. 10-11 at Livingston Lanes in Geneseo.

Open to men and women 50 and over, the scratch singles tournament has an entry fee of $30. To enter, contact Paul Spiotta at 585-202-6458.

Speaking of senior bowling, Joe Trigilio of Attica earned $225 last Saturday by placing in the top 12 at the first NYS Senior Masters Championship at Lakeview Lanes in Fulton.

Trigilio qualified ninth out of 94 entries with 856 for four games, and won his first match in the finals before being eliminated.

Jim Pursel of Batavia cashed for $100, just missing the cut to advance to the finals by one pin.

Ray Textor of the Jamestown area defeated PBA50 competitor Sam Ventura of Norwich for the title and $1,400 first prize. Ventura had advanced with a victory over PBA Hall of Famer Doug Kent.

In senior women’s tournament play last week, bowlers from Albion, Batavia, Pavilion, Mount Morris, Churchville and Silver Springs captured age group titles at the 33rd Gladys Ford Memorial Tournament at Rose Garden Bowl.

Winners were Gail Ward, Albion, Class AA, 75-and-over, 644; Georgene Della Penna, Batavia, Class A, 70-74, 654; Donna Davis, Pavilion, Class B, 65-69, 634; Roselena Smith, Mount Morris, Class C, 60-64, 663; Jackie Gallup, Churchville, Class D, 55-59, 609, and Lisa Granger, Silver Springs, Class E, 50-54, 554.


The 10th annual Triple O Mechanical Singles Handicap Tournament is scheduled for this Sunday at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

Qualifying squads (three games) are at 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. – with the eliminator-style finals to follow. In the finals, the top two scores from each pair will advance to the next round until a champion is determined.

The event, which carries a $30 entry fee, features incentives for women, seniors (55-and-over) and super seniors (65-and-over).

Each squad will have a maximum of 24 bowlers. To reserve a spot in advance, call 585-861-0404 to sign up.


The third annual PAWS Triples No-Tap Tournament to beneif the Albion PAWS Animal Shelter is scheduled for this Saturday, with qualifying squads at 1, 3, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.

The entry fee is $75 per team and handicap is based on 80 percent of 220. Basket raffles, prize drawings and other fundraisers will help support the animal shelter.

To reserve a spot, call 585-590-0804 or 585-589-6900.


Medina right-hander Curtis Foss and Mount Morris lefty Bob Santini posted 300 games in league play in recent days.

Both top scratch bowlers, Foss posted 300—762 on Nov. 3 in the Friday Mixers League at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion and Santini spun a perfect game en route to a 733 series on Nov. 1 in the Wednesday Classic League at his home center.

Other high rollers last week:

-- Gregg Wolff, Batavia, 298 game and 729 series and Steve O’Dell, Oakfield, 759 series in the County Line Stone League at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield.

-- Jason Nickerson, Albion, 297 game and 738 series in the Sneezy’s Monday Night League at Oak Orchard Bowl.

-- Michele Larson, Batavia, 267 game and 732 series in the Synergistic Online Solutions MNF League at Mancuso Bowling Center.

October 26, 2017 - 7:34am
posted by Mike Pettinella in sports, Bowling.

A pair of Mikes – right-handers Mike Dillon of Albion and Mike DeVay Jr. of Batavia – found perfection for the first time on the bowling lanes last Thursday at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion and Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia, respectively.

Dillon, competing in the Thursday Night Triples League at Oak Orchard Bowl, finished with a 300 for a 715 series on lanes 5-6.

A bowler as a kid, Dillon said he took up the sport about 15 years ago when he retired from the U.S. Army. Since then, he’s been league bowling a couple nights a week at Oak Orchard, averaging better than 200.

On this night, he started with 201 and 214 before finding the groove with his Hammer Phobia bowling ball. He said all of the balls were in the pocket, but it took a bit longer for the 10-pin to fall on the final delivery.

“The 6-pin popped out of the gutter and took out the 10,” said Dillon, adding that he was “chit-chatting” most of the game and didn’t realize he had a perfect game going until the final frame.

Dillon, 53, bowls on a team that includes his brother, Daryl, who rolled his high game (299) in summer league action this year.

DeVay, a member of the North Pole League at Mancuso’s, strung 12 consecutive strikes in the middle game on lanes 19-20, turning an otherwise so-so night into an evening to remember.

A 192 average bowler last season, he finished with a 625 series.

Attempts to reach him by phone on Wednesday were unsuccessful.

The Sneezy’s Monday Night League at Oak Orchard Bowl produced three more honor scores over the past two weeks – Reid Cole’s 300-814 on Oct. 16 and Robbie Hanks’ 277-265-277—819 on Oct. 23.

Cole now has five 300 games and three 800 series, while Hanks registered his third 800 set. Both scores came on lanes 9-10.

Other recent high scores around the Genesee Region:

-- Caycee Landers, 268—753 in the G&W Vending League at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

Landers is the girlfriend of Chris Bardol, a top scratch bowler in the area and owner of The North Pole Restaurant in Batavia. She moved to this area from Los Angeles.

-- Rachel Van Duser, 720, and Diane Hurlburt, 704, in the Monday Night League at Perry Bowling Center.

-- Michele Larson, 285, in the Monday Night NFL League at Mancuso’s.

-- Skylar Laesser, 248-214-267—729, in the Turnbull Heating Junior League at Mancuso’s.


The 2017 U.S. Open got under way at Flamingo Bowl in Liverpool on Wednesday night with a pre-tournament qualifier where bowlers who were not invited to compete had their chance to win spots in the 144-bowler field.

The participants in the limited field earned their spots primarily through invitations based on their on-lane performances throughout 2016.

An additional 19 spots were earned through the PTQ – with three of those berths going to Rochester bowlers Dan Vick, Mike Rose Jr. and Bill Hasiotis.

The major tournament features most of the best professional bowlers in the world and offers a $30,000 first prize. The stepladder finals will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 1.

Canada’s Francois Lavoie is the defending champion. The 24-year-old right-hander rolled a 300 game on TV en route to the title at South Point Bowling Plaza in Las Vegas. He became only the second foreign-born player to win the tournament, joining Mika Koivuniemi of Finland (2001).

Other notable PBA and PWBA stars competing include Chris Barnes (who was inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame last week), Jason Belmonte, Parker Bohn III, Ryan Ciminelli of Cheektowaga, Brad Angelo of Lockport, Norm Duke, Liz Johnson (formerly of Cheektowaga), Sean Rash, E.J. Tackett, Pete Weber and Walter Ray Williams.

The full field will begin qualifying at 8 a.m. Friday. Qualifying will consist of three eight-game blocks over three days.

After 24 games, the field will be cut to the top fourth (36 players) for Monday’s cashers’ round, which will consist of an additional eight games to determine the top 24 players for round-robin match play.

Match play will begin Monday at 6 p.m. Eastern with the first of three eight-game rounds. Match play resumes at 10 a.m. Tuesday with the final two blocks of qualifying, including a position round. The five finalists will be determined by total pinfall, including bonus pins, for 56 games.

Starting Friday, each round of the 2017 U.S. Open leading up to the stepladder finals will be broadcast live on Xtra Frame, the exclusive online bowling channel for the PBA.

Flamingo Bowl is located off Thruway Exit 38, about 105 miles east of Batavia.


Monday’s mail included an envelope from the United States Bowling Congress and in it was my 2017-18 membership card obtained through my participation in the Geracerealty.com/No Finer Diner doubles league at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

A letter signed by USBC President Frank Wilkinson thanked me for supporting USBC in its role as the National Governing Body and for helping to provide A Future for the Sport (USBC’s slogan the past few years).

The envelope also included two small inserts – one touting BenefitHub, an online site that offers discounts from major businesses as well as local deals and offers on car rentals, hotels, restaurants, etc., and the other promoting a $1,000 shopping spree.

These promotions can be found by going to bowl.com/memberrewards and bowl.com/adultsweepstakes.

When I clicked on the first one, and entered my location, I found discounts from The North Pole, Sunny’s and Center Street Smokehouse in Batavia, Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen, Wolves Den in Basom as well as Batavia Downs Gaming. And there are plenty more discounts in the Buffalo and Rochester areas.

I then checked out the sweepstakes and, since my granddaughter is a USBC member, I was able to enter by answering five simple questions. So, if you are a USBC member with a child or grandchild in a USBC program, here’s your chance to win a thousand bucks.


Al Vlietstra of Geneseo, a three-time NYS tournament champion, advanced to the finals of the 60-and-over bowlers’ club event on Oct. 15 at AMF Dewey Gardens in Rochester.

Vlietstra, 69, a regular sponsor of the Pin Points column through his masonry business, was the third-high qualifier with a 707 series, and went on to advance to the top three with games of 206 and 232. In the title match, his 187 game placed second to the 204 posted by Rick Jewell of Rochester.

Joe Trigilio of Attica and Fred Gravanda of Batavia also cashed. The next 60-and-over tournament is set for Nov. 26 at Pleasure Lanes in Hilton.

Vlietstra is one of several Genesee Region bowlers signed up to compete in the first NYS Senior Masters scratch singles tournament scheduled for Nov. 4 at Lakeview Lanes in Fulton.

Other local bowlers entered are Paul Spiotta, Jim Pursel and Scott Shields, all of Batavia; Kevin Gray Sr. of Honeoye Falls, and Ken Ball of Avon.

The NYS Senior Masters features a $1,200 first prize (based on 80 entries). Squad times are 9 a.m. and 11:30 a.m., with the top 16 advancing to the match play finals. Entry fee is $65.

Entry forms can be downloaded from the NYS USBC website – www.bowlny.com.


There’s nothing like home cooking, just ask the Oak Orchard I team in the Genesee Region Youth Travel League.

Bowling on their home lanes in Albion, team members Matt Baker, Ben Lennox and Paige Snook and Bailee Snook defeated Batavia X Factor, 17-2, to move into first place after two weeks – 2.5 points ahead of Rose Garden I (Bergen).

Baker rolled a 627 series, Lennox had 613 and Paige Snook posted a 247 game and 577 series.

Skylar Laesser of Batavia Strike Force took top honors for the week with 246—676 while teammate Corinne Saluste recorded a 573 series. Samantha Hyde of Le Roy Legion rolled a 541 series.

The league resumes on Nov. 5 at Mount Morris Lanes.


For the second straight year, Mancuso Bowling Center will host the “Beat the Champ” television show – with qualifiers and roll-off on Nov. 10-12, followed by the taping for broadcast on WBBZ-TV (MeTV) on Dec. 2.

Bowlers will have a chance to compete on TV through qualifiers set for 5 and 7 p.m. Nov. 10; noon, 2 and 4 p.m. Nov. 11, and noon, 2 and 4 p.m. Nov. 12.  The top 24 will advance to the roll-off at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 12, with the top nine advancing to the TV show.

Four shows from Mancuso’s will air on Dec. 9, 16, 23 and 30.

Last year, Batavians Rich Wagner and Fred Gravanda made it to the TV finals, with each winning a couple matches.

For more information, call Mancuso Bowling Center at 343-1319.  The fee to enter each qualifying round is $30, and bowlers can enter more than once.

To see the local tournament schedule over the coming weeks, scroll down to the Oct. 12 Pin Points column.

October 12, 2017 - 8:38am
posted by Mike Pettinella in sports, Bowling.

Drawing on the success of the Wednesday Senior Shootout, a weekly match-play format league at Transit Lanes in Buffalo, management at Medina Lanes is starting its 20-week Sunday Morning Rolloffs this Sunday (Oct. 15).

“We’ve got 20 people signed up and we will take more,” said Jim Foss, lanes employee, who explained that participants – it’s open to men and women -- will be divided into three groups based on their highest league average and will bowl against only those in their age group until the final game.

The format is as follows:

-- Qualifying: Three games, with those advancing determined by high scores in each of three age groups.
-- Rolloffs: Two games, with the top two advancing from the first game, and the top one advancing from the second game.
-- Finals: The winners from each group bowl one game, with the high score taking the top cash prize.

The finalists will receive cash awards each week – the amounts determined by the number of bowlers. The weekly fee is $20.

Foss said the season will feature two 10-week sessions, the first one from Oct. 15 through Dec. 17 and the second one from Jan. 14 through March 18. Participants can bowl in either or both sessions, but are obligated for a minimum of 10 weeks. The league will be certified by the United States Bowling Congress.

For more information or to sign up, contact Medina Lanes at 585-318-4474.


An eight-game tournament featuring a throwback oil machine drew a "who's who" list of Western New York scratch bowlers to Miller Lanes in Honeoye Falls last month, and their skills were put to the test.

Miller Lanes manager Mike Kime reported that bowlers competed on an oil pattern used in the 1990's for the former American Bowling Congress Championships, applied with an old pad-style oil machine on the center's wood lanes.

"There was nothing easy about it," Kime said. "Of the 46 entrants, only six averaged better than 200 and six DNF'd (did not finish)."

In what proved to be a matter of survival, Jim Zimmerman of Syracuse finished with a score of 1,680 to win the $800 top prize.

He was followed by Brian Hall of Canandaigua, 1,624, $400; Chris Lamb of Rochester, 1,620, $250; Jacob Kent (Doug Kent's son) of Newark, 1,617, $200; Chris Bardol of Rochester, 1,609, $180; Kevin Donovan of Painted Post, 1,606, $160; Tom Sorce of Blasdell, 1,591, $140; Dan Vick of Rochester, 1,563, $120, and Dana Voytovich of Cheektowaga, 1,553, $100.


The 60-and-Over Tour, coordinated by Rochester and New York State Hall of Famer Tommy Kress, is expanding its schedule this season.

Kress announced that the Sunday scratch singles circuit, which has produced several champions from the Genesee Region, will feature at least 10 tournaments in 2017-18, including events at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia, Medina Lanes and Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion.

The entry fee has been increased from $30 to $40 this season, Kress said, explaining that he wants to add some additional prize money for seventh to 12th place.

The schedule of events follows. Check-in time is 11 a.m. with starting time at noon.

-- Oct. 15, AMF Dewey Garden Lanes, Rochester.
-- Nov. 5, TBA.
-- Nov. 26, Pleasure Lanes, Hilton.
-- Dec. 17, Bowl-A-Roll Lanes, Rochester.
-- Jan. 7, Mancuso Bowling Center, Batavia.
-- Jan. 28, Parkview Bowl, Rochester.
-- Feb. 18, TBA.
-- March 18, Brockport Bowl.
-- April 8, Oak Orchard Bowl, Albion.
-- April 29, Medina Lanes.
-- Year-end event in May, TBA.


The Genesee Region Youth Travel League started last Sunday at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia with 13 four-person teams, including five from the youth program in Batavia.

Team rosters are as follows:

Batavia Strike Force – Corinne Saluste, Emma Miller, James Townsend, Skylar Laesser and Sam Miller.

Batavia X-Factor – Tara Clattenburg, Nate Goras, Zach Wester, Tony Sprague, Haylee Thornley.

Batavia Fire & Ice – Samantha Balbi, Jack Pickard, Noah Pickard, Ben Sputore.

Batavia Thunder – Josh Sprague, Gavynn Trippany, Ryan Bigsby, Brock Bigsby.

Batavia Bombers – Jonah Martin, Lily Martin, Michael Geck, Noah Martin.

Mount Morris Lanes – Trenten Willis, Brad June, Kline Laney, Cameron Laney.

Le Roy Legion Lanes – Trey Prevost, Felicity Wieseltier, Aaron Leone, Samantha Leone.

Scopano’s Lanes – Roster TBD.

Rose Garden Bowl I – Devon Zinter, Madelynn Pimm, Brooke Jarkiewicz, TBD.

Rose Garden Bowl II – Megan Jarkiewicz, Sawyer Zinter, Brendan Pimm, Katelyn Ball.

Oak Orchard Lanes I – Bailee Snook, Paige Snook, Matt Baker, TBD.

Oak Orchard Lanes II – Jesse Keller, Dallas Ecker, Cameron Ecker, TBD.

Perry Bowling Center – Hayden Abbott, Brooke Jurek, Matt Hurlburt, Dennis Van Duser.

Individually, Hurlburt had the high game (208) and series (574) for the boys and Emma Miller had the high game (234) and series (582) for the girls.

The league bowls again at 12:30 p.m. Oct. 22 at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion.


Several local tournaments are scheduled over the next month, including two Genesee Region USBC competitions for seniors in Bergen and Medina and the 10th annual Triple O Mechanical handicap singles event in Bergen.

SAT., OCT. 28
GRUSBC Youth Eliminator
Perry Bowling Center

GRUSBC boys and girls are eligible to compete for scholarships in the tournament, which features one qualifying squad (12:30 p.m.) and a four-game handicap format. Entry fee is $25. Contact GRUSBC President Tom Fluker at 585-284-2637 or by email at [email protected].

Brian Morasco Memorial 3-Person No-Tap
Mancuso Bowling Center

First place is $750, based on 48 entries, in this second annual tournament, which is dedicated to the late Brian Morasco, a lifelong Batavian well known in the bowling community. Squads are at noon, 2 and 4 p.m. Entry fee is $75 per team. Part of the proceeds will go Genesee Cancer Assistance and the Arthritis Foundation. Contact Mark Brown at 716-474-7960 or call Mancuso’s at 585-343-1319.

Early Bird Season 3-Person No-Tap
Medina Lanes

Squad times this Saturday are 2, 4 and 6 p.m. with a guaranteed $600 awaiting the first-place team. Open to men, women and mixed teams, the tournament features a 90 percent of 220 handicap format. Entry fee is $75 per team. Call 318-4474 to enter.

SAT., NOV. 4-SUN., NOV. 5
GRUSBC Gladys Ford Memorial Women’s Senior Singles
Rose Garden Bowl, Bergen

Senior (age 50 and over) women members of the GRUSBC are eligible to bowl in the handicap, age-division event, which is in its 33rd year. Squad times (three games) are 2:30 p.m. on Saturday or 1:30 p.m. on Sunday. Bowlers compete only against those in their age classification. Entry fee is $27 and entries close on Oct. 28. Contact Jan King at 585-335-3309.

SAT., NOV. 11
GRUSBC Senior Masters
Medina Lanes

A $300 top prize, based on 48 entries, awaits the winner of the 12th annual tournament, a scratch singles event for GRUSBC men and women age 50 and over. Squad times (three games) are 12:30 and 2 p.m. – re-entry is allowed – with the top 12 advancing to the finals at 3:30 p.m. Entry fee is $30. Contact Paul Spiotta at 585-202-6458 or [email protected].

SUN., NOV. 12
Triple O Mechanical Singles Handicap
Rose Garden Bowl, Bergen

The entry fee stays at just $30 for this event, which includes incentives for woman, seniors (55-and-over) and super seniors (65-and-over). First place, based on 48 entries, is $500. Squad times are 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m., with eliminator-style finals (top two advance from each pair of lanes) to follow. Each squad has a maximum of 24 bowlers. Contact Mike Pettinella at 343-3736 or at [email protected]

September 27, 2017 - 8:31pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

Batavian Mary Ann Stone is among six division winners of the 37th NYS Women’s Senior Singles Championships who have earned the opportunity to compete in the USBC Senior Championships next August in Reno, Nev.

Stone placed first in the 60-64 age classification at the state tournament last month at East Greenbush Bowling Center near Albany, posting 1,405 with handicap for six games.

The right-hander rolled 1,063 scratch – much better than her 153 average – to outdistance second-place Keesa Bess of Binghamton by 53 pins.  Stone won $160.

Her effort gives her the right to represent New York State at the national tournament, which is scheduled for Aug. 7-9, 2018, at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno.

Stone is part of a bowling family that includes husband, Roger; brother, local Hall of Famer Fred Gravanda, and cousin, Paul Spiotta, also a Hall of Famer.

The New York State USBC pays the entry fee and provides some expense money for those who bowl at the national level.

Around 550 women participated in the state tournament in six age groups – 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74 and 75 and over.

For more about the Women's Senior Singles Tournament and the NYS Open Senior Championships in Liverpool next month, go to www.bowlny.com.


As it commemorates its 60th anniversary, the GoBowling! Professional Bowlers Association is set to unveil 16 different oil patterns – including the new (and difficult) 45-foot Dragon and the new (and easy) Chris Paul “house shot.”

It’s a good idea, especially in light of the ever-changing technology that is dominating the sport.

According to a PBA news release, some of the revised patterns will be used during the season-opening GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX in Reno from Nov. 7-19.

Each of the patterns vary in length, oil volume and shape, and will be used exclusively during the GoBowling! PBA Tour, PBA50 Tour and PBA Regional program’s 2018 seasons. Each will include a number in its name to indicate the length of the pattern.

Some of the PBA tournaments and their patterns are as follows:

-- Cheetah 33, Chameleon 39, Scorpion 42, Shark 45 and Earl Anthony 42 patterns, World Series of Bowling IX, Nov. 7-19.
-- Don Johnson 40 pattern at the PBA Tournament of Champions in Akron, Feb. 5-11.
-- Dick Weber 45 at the Go Bowling! PBA 60th Anniversary Classic in Indianapolis, Feb. 13-18.
-- Carmen Salvino 44 at the Barbasol PBA Players Championship in Columbus, Ohio, Feb. 19-25.
-- Mark Roth 42 will be used for the Roth/Holman PBA Doubles Championship in Columbus, Ohio, Feb, 19-25, and for the PBA League competition in Portland, Maine, April 16-22.

The oil pattern library also will include the Dragon 45, Wolf 33, Viper 36, Bear 39 and Johnny Petraglia 36.


Perry Bowling Center is hosting the 6th annual Genesee Region USBC Youth Eliminator Tournament, featuring scholarships for the top eight bowlers (based on at least 24 entries), on Saturday, Oct. 28.

The tourney is open to Genesee Region USBC youth members only (boys and girls). The entry fee is $25 with each participant guaranteed at least four games.

The handicap event lists one squad – 12:30 p.m.

To enter, contact GRUSBC President Tom Fluker at 585-284-2637 or by email at [email protected].

Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia is hosting the 2nd annual Brian Morasco Memorial 3-Person Handicap No-Tap Tournament on Nov. 4, with squads at noon, 2 and 4 p.m.

First place, based on 48 entries, is $750.  Proceeds from the tournament and a basket raffle will go to Genesee Cancer Assistance and the Arthritis Foundation.

To enter, contact Mark Brown at 716-474-7960 or call Mancuso’s at 585-343-1319.


-- Carrie Monachino is returning for a second year as coordinator of the Paradise Youth Junior League at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield and she reports the program will begin on Oct. 14 and run for 20 weeks through Feb. 24, 2018.

Sign-ups for the league are this weekend – from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday and noon to 2 p.m. Sunday at the 12-lane center on South Pearl Street.  The registration fee is $20.

Entrants (it’s open to boys and girls) must be at least 4 years old as of Aug. 1, 2017 or enrolled in either a UPK or Kindergarten for the 2017-18 school year. All squads will be comprised of mixed age groups to allow families to bowl at the same time.

The league also will be conducting a pulled pork BBQ fundraiser at Caryville Inn in Oakfield from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 5.

For more information, contact Carrie at 585-356-8307.

-- Medina Lanes produced a couple of honor scores on Sept. 21 as Curtis Foss rolled 299 and Joe Brower 290 in the Thursday Firefighters League. Rob Dennis picked the 4-6-7-10 (also known as the Double Pinochle or Big 4) on that night.

The league still has openings for teams and individuals.

Jim Foss, employee at Medina Lanes, said he is hoping to floor a Sunday morning coed handicap doubles league, with a target starting date of Oct. 15.  If you’re interested, call Medina Lanes at 585-318-4474.

-- At Perry Bowling Center, Chris Huntz strung 11 strikes before leaving the 2-4-5 in the Monday Night League on Sept. 18.

-- Fluker indicated that the Genesee Region Youth Travel League is expected to have at least 15 teams this season, including five from Mancuso Bowling Center.

Fluker said the league’s opening session is set for 12:30 p.m. Oct. 8 at Mancuso’s. Other teams will be from Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion (three), Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen (two) and Perry, Mount Morris, Medina, Scopano’s and Legion Lanes in Le Roy.

-- The County Line Stone League at Scopano’s has bowled two weeks thus far, but can use a few more bowlers to fill teams. If you’re interested in bowling on a four-person team, contact Bruce Kraus, league secretary, at 716-695-5041.


Bill Hayes, president of Turnbull Heating & Air, poses with three members of the Turnbull Junior League at Mancuso Bowling Center that he will be sponsoring this season, from left, Ashlynn Shisler, Bailey Quilliam and Jack Pickard. Hayes has sponsored the league for about 20 years.

September 13, 2017 - 1:33pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in sports, Bowling.

Another bowling season is upon us – and it didn’t take long for Chris Bardol to find his way onto the Pin Points column once again.

The Rochester resident and owner of North Pole Restaurant in Batavia started the G&W Vending League season at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen on a high note Tuesday night by posting a 300 game and 760 series.

Over the past few seasons, Bardol, a 29-year-old right-hander, has registered numerous 300 games and 800 series in Genesee Region USBC league play.

Bardol also made a big splash four months ago at the 2017 United States Bowling Congress Open Championships in Reno, Nev.

On the afternoon of May 20, Bardol rolled a 300 game on the extremely difficult USBC Open oil pattern en route to a 721 series in the Doubles event.

His big series propelled him and Doubles partner Tim Pfeifer of Oakdale, Pa., to a 1,417 total, which was good for seventh place (and a prize of $1,150).

Bardol bowled on the Rose Bowl Lanes team captained by USBC Hall of Famer Doug Kent. The team finished in 18th place in the tournament that attracted around 10,000 teams in three divisions. Bardol also placed 20th in All-Events with a 2,065 score (229 average).

By the way, Kent and his son, Jacob, placed fifth in Doubles with 1,425.

Mike Rose Jr. of Rochester claimed two more “Eagles” as part of Team NABR, which posted 3,266 for the $4,000 top prize in Regular Team and 9,957 for first place in Regular Team All-Events (Team, Doubles and Singles combined).

Brad Angelo of Lockport captured the Regular All-Events crown with 2,176.


Right-handers Bob Hodgson of Medina and Mark Comstock of Warsaw showed no signs of rust as they posted 300 games on Sept. 6, the opening night of the Wednesday Community League at Medina Lanes and the Wednesday Night 7 P.M. League at Livingston Lanes in Geneseo.

Hodgson, 69, picked up where he left off last season when he recorded a pair of 800 series and won one of Tommy Kress’ 60-and-Over tournaments.

Comstock, 57, rolled his first perfect game since a 300—805 effort at Livingston Lanes in November 2012.


While nothing has been finalized, John “Jonesey” Scopano is hoping that a New Jersey couple will purchase his family’s bowling center (Paradise Lanes) and adjoining Oakfield Hotel in the near future.

“A husband and wife are interested – they’ve looked at it a couple times,” Scopano said earlier this week. “They plan on coming back here later this month to check out the area.”

Previously, the family hired Russ Bly of Warsaw as the facilities manager, with duties including pinsetter and lane maintenance.


The Syracuse area will be a popular bowling destination during the 2017-18 season as it hosts a New York State USBC tournament and two USBC national tournaments.

Flamingo Bowl in the Syracuse suburb of Liverpool is the site of the NYS Open Senior Championships on Oct. 14-15, 21-22, and the U.S. Open from Oct. 25 through Nov. 1.

And next spring, the 2018 USBC Open Championships will take place at the Oncenter Convention Center in downtown Syracuse.

-- The NYS Open Senior Championships feature competition in Doubles and Singles for NYS USBC members (men and women) 50 years of age and up.

Squad times are 12:30 and 3 p.m. each day and entry forms can be found at www.bowlny.com.

-- The U.S. Open is a scratch singles event that welcomes the best bowlers in the U.S. and overseas.

Several changes are being made this year, most notably limiting the field to 144 bowlers who have been invited based on their performance in 2016.

Competitors again will bowl 24 qualifying games over three days, using only 24 of the center’s 40 lanes. This ensures that all bowlers will compete on the same lanes and see them the same amount of times during qualifying, with each experiencing the three phases of the oil pattern -- fresh, burn and double-burn.

If spots are open after all invitees have confirmed participation, other bowlers may be able to qualify for the U.S. Open through a special tournament to be held on Oct. 25 at Flamingo Bowl. More information about the U.S. Open can be found at www.bowl.com.

-- The 2018 USBC Open Championships will be contested on specially-built lanes at the Oncenter from March 24 through July 7. The last time the tournament was in Syracuse was 1999.

There are three divisions based on skill level: The Regular Division, for those who average 210 and above; the Standard Division, for those with averages from 181-209, and the Classified Division, for bowlers who average 180 or below. 

Again, for more info go to www.bowl.com.


-- Kevin Sass, proprietor of Letchworth Pines in Portageville, reports that he is hoping to build a youth program on Saturday mornings.

Boys and girls from the ages of 4-18 are invited to sign up from 10 a.m. to noon on Sept. 23 and enjoy free bowling during that time. Sass said he is planning a 16-week season for 2017-18.

-- Genesee Region USBC directors will meet at 12:30 p.m. Sunday at T.F. Brown’s in Batavia. Among the agenda items are finalizing the association’s tournament schedule.

-- Perry Bowling Center is looking for a couple teams to fill its Tuesday Doubles League, which is open to men and women. Call 237-6358 for more information.


Condolences to the families of these Batavia-area bowlers who passed away recently:

-- Roger Wood, Aug. 8
-- Carl Aquino, Aug. 28
-- Steve Rynkowski, Sept. 2
-- Patricia (Pat) Sewert, Sept. 13

August 22, 2017 - 10:08am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling, Genesee Region USBC.

Informational meetings for secretaries of leagues in the Genesee Region United States Bowling Congress association are scheduled for 6:30 tonight at T.F. Brown's in Batavia and 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Mount Morris Lanes.

Supply kits will be distributed at the meetings, which also will feature complementary pizza, wings and refreshments courtesy of the GRUSBC. All Genesee Region USBC league secretaries or their representatives are required to attend one of the two meetings.

"These meetings are extremely important as they set the stage for a successful 2017-18 season," said GRUSBC President Tom Fluker. "Not only will we be handing out the league supplies, but we also will be sharing pertinent information about dues structure, the certification process, our extensive awards program and our association tournaments."

Fluker noted that two meetings are scheduled in different parts of the association in an effort to accommodate secretaries of leagues throughout the GLOW region. Supply kits for all leagues will be available at both sessions.

The Genesee Region USBC has jurisdiction over all USBC-certified leagues at 11 centers -- Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia, Scopano's Lanes in Oakfield, Legion Lanes in Le Roy, Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen, Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion, Medina Lanes, Bennington Lanes, Perry Bowling Center, Letchworth Pines, Mount Morris Lanes and Livingston Lanes in Geneseo.

May 15, 2017 - 8:50am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling.


TOURNEY CHAMPIONS: The McClurg Five team out of Perry captured the GRUSBC Association Tournament Open Division title this season. From left are Wes McClurg, Dave Kaczmarek, Bethann Cook-Kaczmarek, Tracy Werner and Steve Werner.


SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENT: Collin Scheiber of Oakfield, congratulated by GRUSBC President Tom Fluker, was the recipient of a $750 scholarship.

MAY 15, 2017 -- The Genesee Region USBC inducted Robert J. "Bob" Foss Jr into its Hall of Fame Saturday night, honored tournament champions and league leaders, and awarded its $1,500 grand prize package to a Warsaw resident at the annual Association Banquet & Hall of Fame Dinner at Batavia Downs Gaming.

Foss, who passed away last October at the age of 55, was enshrined following a heartfelt speech by his son, Curtis, a standout GR bowler who was introduced to the sport by his father and grew up counting his dad as "my best friend."

The elder Foss won and cashed in numerous tournaments, starting as a youth bowler in his hometown of Medina, as a member of the Professional Bowlers Association and in the GRUSBC. He won the GR Masters in 2012 and the GR Memorial Scratch Eliminator in 2013.

"My father loved bowling; it was a passion that kept him going," Curtis said, with his sister, Cassidy, and uncle, Jim, standing behind him, and several family members attending. " ... And I understood his passion, and he passed it down to me in life. We shared it pretty much from the day I was born."

In 2013, Bob and Curtis teamed for an association-record 1,520 scratch doubles score at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion, with Bob rolling a 770 series and Curtis adding 750.

"I'm so proud of my dad, so proud of everything he accomplished, and so proud that he has been inducted into the Hall of Fame in the region he grew up in bowling."

Other honorees included:

-- Collin Scheiber of Oakfield, recipient of the association's $750 scholarship to a graduating senior. Collin will be attending Daemen College in the fall.

-- All adult and youth tournament champions.

-- League bowling achievers, includilng Scott Culp of Lima, 242 average; Diana Hurlburt of Perry and Jenn Bardol of Rochester, 202 average; Chris Bardol of Rochester, 846 series; Jenn Bardol, 760 series; Jordan Fluker of Batavia, 300 game (youth); Morgan Allis of Medina, 277 game (youth); Alex Allis of Medina, 205 average (youth); Julia Menzie of Bergen, 177 average and 620 series (youth); Ian Wagner of Medina, 748 series (youth).

The $1,500 grand prize drawing was won by Kevin Gray Jr. of Warsaw, who gets to select from a variety of packages, including gift cards from Tops, Wegmans, Best Buy, Amazon.com, Home Depot or Lowe's; a $1,500 lottery basket; Batavia Downs Gaming weekend; dinner and a movie for a year; golf or bowling packages, or cookout at his home.

In other action, delegates approved two amendments that eliminate term limits for GRUSBC directors and officers, and elected Frank Jarkiewicz of Byron as vice president, and Bea Young of Medina, John Cipolla of Mount Morris and Gary Kuchler of Batavia as directors to three-year terms commencing Aug. 1.

April 27, 2017 - 8:53am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

With the major tournament season upon us, bowlers are traveling far and wide in an attempt to capture a slice of the hundreds of thousands of dollars up for grabs.

Nationally, the United States Bowling Congress Open Championships run through July 15 at South Point Bowling Plaza in Las Vegas, and the USBC Women’s Championships continue through July 9 at Raising Cane’s River Center in Baton Rouge, La.

(The 2018 USBC Open Championships are scheduled for the Oncenter in Syracuse, but that’s a story for a future column).

In New York, the 93rd NYS Open Championships started last weekend at Ideal Bowling Center in Endicott, near Binghamton, and continue for three more weekends, skipping Mother’s Day weekend of May 12-14.

And the 81st NYS Women’s Championships are in the middle of a five-weekend stay at Tonawanda Bowling Center.

Three Genesee Region USBC teams are entered in the NYS Open Championships – J.E. Currier I and J.E Currier II, captained by Bruce Kraus of Corfu and Roger Stone of East Pembroke, respectively, and the Pretty Birds team captained by Mike Johnson of Batavia.

The Currier teams compete this weekend in Team, Doubles, Singles and All-Events, while Johnson’s team is scheduled for the last weekend, May 19-21.

At the NYS Women’s Championships, 19 teams of bowlers from the Genesee Region USBC are among the 405 teams entered. Only the Syracuse, Rochester and Johnstown local associations have more teams than the GRUSBC contingent.

The GRUSBC teams entered are as follows:

Creekside Construction and Rebels (Bonnie Willey, Geneseo); Huber Farms (Debbie Huber, Attica); Cartwright Racing, Just Us and Wiltsey Girls (Dawn Luckenbach, Caledonia); Crawford’s (Tiffany Crawford, Albion); Star Theatre (Lois Furioso, Wayland); Dogwood Florist (Cheryl Robson, Dansville); Burgio Tire & Co. (Lois Preston, Albion).

Also, MJ Graphics (Mary Jean Durfee, Attica); Thing I and Thing II (Roxanne Clar, Avon); Three Mrs. & A Spare (Amanda Quait, Nunda); Ubi Caritas and Friends (Susan Boring, Albion); Strike Out Cancer (Judy Bzduch, Perry); North Pole (Darleen Balduf, South Byron), and Medina Ladies (Jackie Jurinich, Medina).

You can find complete standings and updates for the NYS Open and Women’s Championships at the NYS USBC website – www.bowlny.com.


While tournament bowling may be all “fun and games” for the competitors, those managing these events are faced with the sometimes difficult task of determining entering averages that truly reflect a bowler’s ability.

Bowlers establish their averages by competing in leagues and, normally, tournaments use a bowler’s highest average over a period of time -- ranging from last season to three seasons ago -- based on at least 21 game in a particular league (although some tournaments are now using 12-game averages).

At one time, all averages were treated equally, regardless of whether a league bowler was competing in a bowling center where it was hard to post high scores for a variety of reasons (by design, improper lane maintenance or too much/too little oil on the lanes).

Several years ago, the USBC implemented “Sport” leagues featuring oil patterns that took away the wall of oil in the middle of the lane that makes it easy to hit the pocket.  With that, leagues were categorized as either Standard (or House) or Sport.

The USBC also established a Sport league conversion scale which gave tournament managers a tool to adjust a bowler’s average. For example, an average of 192 in a Sport league converts to 216 – a number that represents the bowler’s “house shot” average.

Earlier this week, the USBC introduced a third league designation – Challenge – which is meant to take into account leagues that are bowled on lane conditions that fall between Standard and Sport conditions. As in the case of the Sport league, a Challenge conversion chart will be posted on the USBC’s website – www.bowl.com.

In announcing the move, USBC Executive Director Chad Murphy said many bowlers compete in leagues that are not designated as Sport, leagues where tougher oil patterns are used and where oil patterns are changed periodically over the course of the season.

 “A thorough examination of bowlers who have competed in both Standard and Challenge leagues showed a discrepancy that needed to be addressed,” Murphy said. “The data showed us that using a Sport conversion for some leagues might not be appropriate, but the averages of bowlers competing on certain conditions did warrant a conversion to ensure they are not gaining an unfair advantage when they compete on Standard conditions.

“This is part of our ongoing commitment to ensure the averages of all bowlers accurately reflect a bowler’s ability.”

Starting with the 2017-2018 season, when a league submits its certification, the league secretary must choose one, and only one, of three lane condition options – Standard, Challenge or Sport.

Standard will be for leagues conducted on traditional house conditions, Sport will be for true Sport leagues, while Challenge will be for leagues that use a variety of difficult patterns but are not classified as Sport-only leagues.

The USBC also is looking at data to determine a league’s lane condition designation. Leagues with an average difference of 20 or more pins when compared to a Standard league still will be considered Sport.  Leagues with an average difference between 10-19 pins will fall into the new Challenge condition.

Leagues from the 2016-2017 season will be moved into the appropriate lane condition designation based upon final averages and an analysis, and those leagues will be notified they have been moved into a new classification.

I applaud USBC management and staff for their efforts to create a fair tournament playing field. I hope we will see further measures – possibly a bowling center rating system and stiffer penalties for “sandbaggers” and those who report incorrect averages – down the road.


Congratulations to Vincent Mack of Perry and Cory Hyde of Mount Morris on their entrance into the “300 circle” earlier this month.

Mack, 49, posted his perfect game on April 7 in the Friday Nite 4 League at Perry Bowling Center. Using a Storm IQ, the 194-average bowler finished with the 300 for a 695 series.

Hyde, 35, used a Columbia Ransom Demand to shoot 300-193-209—702 in the Sunday Night Mixed League at Mount Morris Lanes on April 16. He has a 184 average.

For a list of all honor scores in the GRUSBC this season, go to www.bowlgr.com.


Genesee Region USBC members planning to attend the association’s banquet/hall of fame dinner have until May 1 to make their reservations by sending an email to [email protected] or [email protected].

The dinner is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on May 13 at Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road.

Tournament champions, scholarship winners and Hall of Fame inductee Robert Foss Jr., who is being enshrined posthumously, will be honored.

Tickets are $25, with GRUSBC directors, league secretaries and Hall of Famers receiving a 50 percent discount. No reservations will be taken after May 1.

This is final column for the 2016-17 season. Thank you to all of the businesses who have supported this column. To them and our readers, have a great summer and hope to be back in September.

April 12, 2017 - 7:33am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again – with a different bowling ball -- until you do succeed!

For Harris Busmire, a lifelong Bergen resident and 25-year assistant chef at the Viking Valhalla Restaurant, that was the story of a memorable night of league bowling last Tuesday (April 4) in the G&W Vending League at his hometown lanes, Rose Garden Bowl.

Busmire recorded 30 strikes in his three games – a notable achievement – but what makes it more remarkable is that all of those 1-3 pocket hits came after the fifth frame of the first game. In other words, the 52-year-old right-hander struck on 30 of his last 31 deliveries!

His games were 214, 277 and 300 for a 791 series, with the last game marking his third USBC-certified perfect game. His previous 300 was part of an 811 series (his lone 800 effort) in March of 2003.

“I really struggled early,” Busmire said, pointing out that he used two bowling balls in the first five frames before switching to a Columbia 300 Enigma in the sixth frame. “Nothing was working.”

Indeed. He missed a single pin spare in the first frame and spared in the second frame with a MOTIV Talon before leaving two splits (and failing to convert them) and then getting a spare with an Ebonite Disruption.

“When I switched to the Enigma, the whole lane opened up,” he said. “I just kept my hand behind the ball and I was able to use three different lines.”

Busmire said every ball from the sixth frame of game one to the end of game three was solid in the pocket except for the fourth frame of game two when he left the 3-6-10 on lane 8.

“I came too much off the side of the ball, almost over the top,” Busmire said of the errant shot. He did pick the spare, however, and went on to string 20 consecutive strikes.

Despite chronic knee problems (he wears a knee brace when he bowls, along with a hat and shorts), Busmire bowls in three leagues at Rose Garden and averages 203 on Tuesday, 195 on Wednesday and 190 on Thursday.

Busmire wasn’t the only high scorer last week as Chris Bardol of Rochester continued his super bowling in the G&W Vending League with a 299 game and 811 series – his third 800 set to go along with a pair of 300 games and the 299.

Other recent honor scores:

-- Scott Budde of Albion registered his first 300 game, capping a 716 series, on April 2 during the New York State Elks 70th Annual Bowling Tournament at Boulevard Bowl in Schenectady.

His perfect game came on the first weekend of the tournament, which runs for five weekends at Town & Country Lanes in Guilderland (Team event) and at Boulevard Bowl (Doubles & Singles).

Budde, who turned 53 last month, started with 202 and 214 before burying all 12 balls in the 1-3 pocket for the 300.

A sales rep for Kaman Automation in Tonawanda, Budde said he was more nervous after the game was over than during it.

“I didn’t know what do to after it was over,” he said.

Budde used a new Roto-Grip Daredevil bowling ball to eclipse his previous high game – what he termed a “wacky” 284 in the early 1990’s.  He took about 18 years off from bowling before starting up again a couple years ago.

His 300—716 came during the Doubles event where he and his partner, Dan Ward, posted 1,470 with handicap (1,260 scratch) to top the standings.

-- Danny Hunt of Geneseo posted a 300 game at Livingston Lanes in his hometown on April 9 in the Sunday Evening Mixed League.


Perry residents Joann Van Duser and daughter, Rachel, combined for a 1,306 score with handicap on the final day of competition to claim the Women’s Doubles title at the Genesee Region USBC Association Tournament.

Joann (143 average) rolled 431 scratch while Rachel (176 average) posted 603 scratch to edge another mother-daughter team in Laurie Cole and Virginia Metzger of Albion (1,278). Ironically, both teams were bowling on the same pair of lanes during the tournament’s last squad.

While the number of entries continues to lag, there were more bowlers than last year. In the Open Team event at Letchworth Pines in Portageville, entries rose from 16 to 20, and in the Women's Team event, entries increased from five to 10. Also, in Open Doubles, (Doubles & Singles took place at Perry Bowling Center) entries jumped from 32 in 2016 to 51 this year.

According to GRUSBC President Tom Fluker, a committee of GRUSBC directors and selected bowlers will be put together to evaluate the tournament and to implement changes next year in an effort to increase participation.

Unofficial champions:

Open Team -- McClurg Five, Perry Bowling Center, 3,755. Members are Tracy Werner, Steve Werner, Wes McClurg, Beth Ann Kaczmarek and Dave Kaczmarek.

Women's Team – King Brothers, Bennington Lanes, 2,572. Members are Debbie Huber, Carley King, Angela Zymowski and Mary Meyer.

Open Doubles -- Casey Palmer Sr. and Casey Palmer Jr., 1,623.

Women's Doubles -- Joann Van Duser and Rachel Van Duser, 1,306.

Open Singles -- Al Vlietstra, 860.

Women's Singles -- Caroline Appleby, 664.

Open All-Events -- Casey Palmer Jr., 2,358.

Women's All-Events -- Patricia Gilbertson, 1,913.


The Genesee Region USBC East (Wyoming and Livingston counties) defeated the GRUSBC West (Genesee and Orleans counties), 45-43, in the third annual Senior Cup match at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield on Saturday (April 8).

Competition in the 50-and-over event took place in Doubles, Singles and Baker Team. The teams tied after the Doubles, and the East led by two points after Singles. The teams split the 18 points awarded during the Baker Team match, enabling the East squad to break a 1-1 tie in the series.

Bob Santini led the way for the East by winning all three of his matches, posting 290—732 in Singles. Team captain Kevin Gray Sr. also won his three matches while Brenda Komenda averaged 220, second only to Santini’s 234.

Other East members were John LaGeorge, Jerry Davis, Al Vlietstra, Mark Comstock, Eric Galton, Brett Van Duser and Don Parrott.

For the West, Roger Stone and Bruce Kraus each averaged 217.

Other East members were captain Paul Spiotta, Scott Gibson, Scott Shields, Joe Mortellaro, Gregg Wolff, Bob Hodgson, Jerry Currier and Joe Trigilio.


The GRUSBC Association Banquet & Hall of Fame Dinner is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on May 13 at Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road.

Tournament champions, scholarship winners and Hall of Fame inductee Robert Foss Jr., who is being enshrined posthumously, will be honored.

Tickets are $25, with GRUSBC directors, league secretaries and Hall of Famers receiving a 50 percent discount. Reservations can be made through May 1 by sending an email to [email protected].

No reservations will be taken after May 1 and no one will be allowed to “walk in” on May 13. The banquet is open to all GRUSBC members.

The final Pin Points column for the 2016-17 season is scheduled to appear on The Batavian on April 27.

March 30, 2017 - 8:25am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

Update, March 31 -- The Sunday Team squads at the Genesee Region USBC Tournament have been cancelled due to a lack of entries. Team openings exist at 7 tonight or at 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on Saturday (April 1).

I can’t tell you how many times I have heard so-called “handicap” bowlers say they can’t compete against “those scratch bowlers” when it comes to participating in the annual local association tournament.

Unfortunately, that perception exists despite the fact that the local association tournament – in our case the Genesee Region USBC – is set up with a handicap format to give bowlers of all skill levels a fair chance at succeeding.

Results from the first of two weekends of the 2017 tournament at Letchworth Pines in Portageville (Team event) and Perry Bowling Center (Doubles & Singles events) are, once again, proof that this perception is not reality.

-- In the Open Team division, McClurg Five out of Perry Bowling Center featuring bowlers with averages ranging from 119 to 194 posted 2,573 scratch – nearly 300 pins better than its team average – en route to a 3,755 score with handicap to move into first place.

Team members are Tracy and Steve Werner, Dave and Bethann Kaczmarek, and Wes McClurg.

-- In the Open Doubles division, Casey Palmer Jr. and Casey Palmer Sr., league bowlers in Batavia and Albion, combined for 1,623 with handicap to take the lead. Palmer Jr., a 178 average bowler, posted 706 scratch, and his dad (182 average) added 593 scratch.

Palmer Jr. rolled 608 in Singles and is in position to surpass All-Events leader Steve Maher of Castile, who rolled 603 in Team, 643 in Doubles and 572 in Singles – all above his 176 average.

Maher’s 2,334 score with handicap is in first place, but Palmer Jr. is scheduled to compete in Team event this weekend and needs 687 with handicap to move past the Castile resident.

-- In Open Singles, 68-year-old Al Vlietstra of Geneseo (200 average) is in first place after rolling 258-225-269—752 for an 860 with handicap score.

Four others broke the 800 mark with handicap – Steve Krna of Batavia, 834 (718 scratch); Gary Roberts of Medina, 821 (635 scratch); Dan Dixon of Attica, 803, (685 scratch), and Dean Cadieux Sr. of Byron, 802 (662 scratch).

-- In Women’s Singles, Deborah Say of Attica rolled 461 scratch – slightly higher than her 139 average – to take the lead with a handicap score of 652.

Other leaders after the opening weekend are as follows:

-- Women’s Team – Huber Farms, Bennington Lanes, 2,572.
-- Women’s Doubles – Deborah Say and Rachel Tibold of Marilla, 1,231.
-- Women’s All-Events – Cathi Fournier of Dansville, 1,863.

Complete standings can be found on the GRUSBC website – www.bowlgr.com.

The tournament resumes Friday night with Team and D/S squads at 7 p.m.  On Saturday, Team squads are at 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. and D/S squads are at 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. On Sunday, both Team and D/S squads are scheduled for 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Open division teams consist of five bowlers (all men, all women or any combination) while Women’s division bowlers consist of four women.

Openings exist on all squads.  Entry forms can be downloaded from the GRUSBC website.



Longtime Batavia bowler Paul Spiotta hit a milestone worthy of celebration last week when he competed in the USBC Open Championships at South Point Bowling Plaza in Las Vegas, Nev.

The 59-year-old right-hander took part in his 25th national tournament and received a plaque for his accomplishment.  And he bowled fairly well with a 1,684 All-Events score (187 average) on the extremely challenging Open Championships oil pattern.

He was part of the Joe’s Awards & Trophies team, which also included Todd Mortellaro, Joe Trigilio, Joe Mortellaro and Gregg Wolff.

They flew to Vegas with a companion team, Striking Effects Pro Shop, which consisted of Jim Pursel, Brian Green, Matt Balduf, Mark Brown and Geoff Harloff.

Green posted 645 in Doubles, combining with Brown for an 1,168 total, while Pursel had 641 in Team and 625 in Singles en route to a 1,766 All-Events score.

Trigilio and Joe Mortellaro are closing in on milestones, as well. By competing at next year’s tournament in Syracuse, Trigilio will have 25 years and Joe Mort will move within a single year of 50 years at the national event.


Norm Bialuski of Rochester rolled a 239 game in the final round to capture the $1,100 first prize at the T.F. Brown’s Scratch Eliminator Tournament on March 18 at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

The 47-year-old right-hander, a frequent competitor in Genesee County events, defeated Mike Rose of Rochester (236), Dana Voytovich of Cheektowaga (181) and Kristina Szczerbinski of North Tonawanda (176) in title match.

Rose earned $550, Voytovich $400 and Szczerbinski $300.

Joe Trigilio of Attica was the lone local qualifier and he finished in ninth place for $160.

This past weekend, Trigilio notched his second 60-and-Over Bowlers Club tourney title this season by topping 40 other bowlers at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

Trigilio posted 244 to defeat Steve Nowicki of Rochester (205) and Bob Oster of Hilton (203) in the three-person finals. 

In the three-game qualifying round, Trigilio placed fifth with 704 and Bob Hodgson of Medina also advanced with 655. Trigilio then rolled 213 and 206 in the next two rounds to reach the finals

In youth league action on March 11th at Medina Lanes, 14-year-old Morgan Allis rolled a 277 game, registering nine consecutive strikes after an opening spare.  She is the daughter of Scott and Peggy Allis.



Megan Jarkiewicz, a third-grader at Byron-Bergen Elementary School and junior bowler at Rose Garden Bowl, placed first in the girls’ handicap grades 4 and under division last month at the NYS Youth Scholarship Region 2 Tournament at AMF Empire Lanes in Rochester.

Megan entered with an 83 average but came through with games of 117, 106 and 134 for a 357 three-game series to take top honors in her division with a 726 score with handicap.

The daughter of Frank and Sarah Jarkiewicz of Byron now moves on to the state finals on April 29 at Kingston Lanes in Kingston, where she will compete for a scholarship.


The Batavia Strike Force team won the final game to hold off Scopano’s I and finish in first place in the Genesee Region Youth Travel League this season.

Scopano’s won the match, 12-7, but fell six points short in its bid to overtake the Batavia team, which lists Corinne Saluste, Jordan Fluker, Skylar Laesser and James Townsend as its regular bowlers.

Regulars on the Scopano’s team are Mason Cadieux, Austin Kotarski, Collin Scheiber and Trevor O’Dell.

The league’s no-tap tournament and awards banquet are set for this Sunday, beginning at 12:45 p.m., at Mancuso Bowling Center.


Congratulations are in order to Doug Johnston of Livonia and Mark Mothersell of Rochester on their 300 games at Livingston Lanes in Geneseo and Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen, respectively.

Johnston rolled his on March 22 in the Wednesday Night 7 P.M. League and Mothersell posted his two nights ago (March 28) in a 710 series in the G&W Vending League. 

(Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column appears every other Thursday on The Batavian, the region’s No. 1 source for online news. To advertise on this page, contact Mike at [email protected] or at 585-343-3736).

March 16, 2017 - 8:09am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

A victory for the “little guy (and gal).”

This year’s T.F. Brown’s Restaurant King & Queen mixed doubles handicap tournament proved to be just that as Marshall and Megan Trykowski Faron chopped down a few “Goliaths” on their way to capturing faron_king_and_queen.jpgthe $500 first prize last Saturday at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

“It is definitely a shock, especially since we went into the tournament thinking it was a no-tap (where nine pins counts as a strike),” Marshall said. “This is only our second tournament, and we just picked up the league on Thursday nights this season.”

Both are new members of the North Pole Restaurant/Family Affair Boat Repair League on Thursdays at Mancuso’s, where Marshall has a 150 average and Megan has a 124 average.

At the King & Queen event, the Batavia couple bowled slightly better than their averages – qualifying 14th out of the 59 entrants to advance to match play and then winning four one-game head-to-head matches to take the title.

“We tried to keep it fun,” Marshall said, adding that it was nerve-racking as well. “We’re built for three games, and here we were in game (number) seven.”

The Farons received 116 pins per game handicap and needed just about all of those pins in two of their matches – a 462-459 victory over scratch bowlers Michelle Sterner of Niagara Falls and Roger Thaine of Rochester, and a 391-389 win over scratch bowlers Tracy Spanitz of Rochester and Mark Brown of Attica.

The victory over Spanitz and Brown propelled the Farons into the finals, where Megan rolled 134 and Marshall 169 in a 419-365 triumph against Batavians Kathy Stearns and Rob Stefani.

Marshall, an Akron native, recently started his own business, C.J.’s Heating & Cooling, which he named after his 3-year-old son, Colton James. The couple is expecting their second child in nine weeks – a son who they will name Connor Joseph in keeping with the C.J.’s theme.

Megan, who has family in Batavia and Darien, starts a new job next week as a Licensed Practical Nurse at the VA Medical Center.

Stearns and Stefani earned $300 for placing second while Spanitz/Brown and Stephanie Alexander of Canandaigua and Scott Culp of Lima each won $200 for reaching the semis.

Other cashers were as follows:

Quarterfinalists, $130 each -- Andrea Pizzo of Rochester and Rob Sease of Brockport, Frank Jarkiewicz of Byron and Laurie Morgante of Bergen, Jeanette Sease of Brockport and Mike Lavender of Medina, and Sandy Restieri and Norm Bialuski of Rochester.

First round, $100 each – Chase Cone of Bergen and Jen Merle of Batavia, Sterner and Thaine, Penny Brown of Attica and Rich Culver of Medina, Rich and Jen Wagner of Batavia, Scott and Christine Shields of Batavia, Joanna and Jerry Menzie Jr. of Bergen, Dana and Christopher Charvella of Batavia, and Kelly and Shayne Herold of Batavia.

Spanitz and Brown were the high qualifiers with 1,382 for three games. Rob Sease had the tournament’s high game (290), while Culver (751) and Spanitz (744) posted the high three-game series.


Mike Hackett said he is optimistic about his bowling future now that he has made a successful switch to a two-handed delivery.

The 27-year-old Pavilion resident rolled his first 300 game on March 7 on lanes 3-4 in the Industrial B League at Legion Lanes in Le Roy while filling in for a regular league member.

“I’ve gone from a 155 average to a 193 average in a year and a half since I went to two hands, and I plan to take the game more seriously,” said Hackett, a PRC tank processor at Pcore Electric Co. Inc. in Le Roy. 

A league bowler for three years, Hackett said he got a couple breaks on the first two balls in the 10th frame – a light hit that collapsed the pocket and then a late-falling 10-pin – before putting the ball squarely into the 1-3 pocket for the 300.

“I was really nervous, but the last ball put them all in the back of the pit,” he said. “After that, my nerves were crazy.”

The pins didn’t cooperate as well after the perfect game as Hackett ended with a 632 series, but he wasn’t too upset.

“I finally got the 300,” he said, eclipsing his previous high of 289, which he said he reached six or seven times.

A regular in two leagues in Le Roy last season, he suffered a broken arm while playing softball last summer and is subbing at Legion Lanes and at Gates Bowl in Rochester this season.

At Oak Orchard Bowl in his hometown of Albion, Greg Gilman said he stayed with the new Loch Ness Monster bowling ball to spin his first 300 game in the Saturday Mixed League on March 11.’

“It’s been 57 years in the coming,” said Gilman, referring to his age. “I just got the ball a couple weeks ago, but I hadn’t bowled too well with it as I was getting used to the way it hooked.”

The ball is the first offering from Monster Bowling, a company co-founded by Rochester pro shop owner Brad Buckert.

Gilman, a right-hander, registered 189 and 205 before zeroing in on the second arrow to finish with the 300 and a 694 series.

“As long as I stayed smooth, it read the lane and hooked into the pocket,” he said. “I got a couple of light mixers where it took out the 7-10, but they all were right there.”

A 190-plus average bowler, Gilman’s previous high game was 289. A recent New York State retiree, he also bowls on Monday and Thursday nights in Albion.

Three other perfect games were reported last week:

-- Rob Sease of Brockport posted 300—741 on March 7 while subbing in the G&W Vending League at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

-- Chris Bardol of Rochester, a frequent flyer in this column, popped another 300 en route to a 687 series in the North Pole/Family Affair Boat Repair League at Mancuso’s on March 9.

-- Rob Dennis of Medina fired 228-222-300—750 in the Thursday Firefighters League at Medina Lanes on March 9.

Honorable mention: Jason Quilliam of Batavia, 290, in the North Pole/Family Affair League and Paul Baney of Holley, 296, in the Sneezy’s Monday Night League at Oak Orchard Bowl.


Letchworth Pines in Portageville and Perry Bowling Center are hosting the 11th annual Genesee Region USBC Association Tournament, a team, doubles, singles and all-events competition scheduled for March 24-26 and March 31-April 2.

The team event will take place at Letchworth Pines and doubles and singles events will be contested at Perry Bowling Center.

In the Open Division, teams consist of five bowlers; in the Women’s Division, teams are made up of four bowlers.

For more information and to download an entry form, go to www.bowlgr.com.

Information about other tournaments this month can be found by scrolling down this page to the March 2 Pin Points column.


Forty-one teams supported the Perry Fire Department’s “Sonny Yencer” three-person handicap no-tap tournament fundraiser last weekend.

The team of Shawn Illerbrun of Warsaw and Marie and Richard Stone of Perry placed first with a 2,420 total to take home the $440 top prize.

They were followed by Ed Doody of Pavilion, Brian Wetmore of Perry and Joe Rosowski of Warsaw, 2,413, $210; Brett Van Duser of Perry, Marty Weaver of Castile and Jamie Schery of Pike, 2,411, $120; and the Perry trio of Rachel Van Duser, John Huntz and Chris Huntz, 2,372, $90.

At Mount Morris Lanes, the Motley Crew team captained by Dave DiSalvo won the Bob Bertram Memorial five-person no-tap tournament’s first prize of $1,000.

A team captained by Tom Sweeney placed second, good for $500.

DiSalvo also won the singles tournament with 878 – earning another $200.

More than $1,200 was generated for both Livingston County Hospice and Teresa House by the event’s 40 teams.


Bowlers from Mancuso Bowling Center and Perry Bowling Center combined forces to take first place in Division A of the Genesee Region USBC Youth Team Tournament on March 4-5 at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

The Thrown Together squad of Brooke Jurek, Emma Miller, Tony Sprague and Matt Hurlburt posted a 2,555 score with handicap to edge Scopano's Scrappers team by eight pins and capture the top prize of $100 scholarships each.

In Division C (there was no Division B), scholarships went to the Mancuso's team of Lily Martin, Jonah Martin, Noah Martin and Zach Wester with 2,440.

The Genesee Region Youth Travel League concludes its season this Sunday afternoon at Mancuso Bowling Center. Batavia Strike Force holds an 11-point lead with 19 points up for grabs as it takes on second-place Scopano’s Lanes No. 1.


Thoughts and prayers go out to the Allis family from the Medina area and the Ecker family of Albion on the passing of their loved ones – Sydney Allis and Bill Ecker.

Syd was the patriarch of a multi-generational and extremely skilled bowling family that lists around 20 USBC-certified adult and youth members. He passed away on March 12 at the age of 92.

Bill, who died suddenly on March 9 at the age of 55, leaves behind his wife, Kay, and sons, Cameron and Dallas, all avid bowlers at Oak Orchard Bowl.

(Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column appears every other Thursday on The Batavian, the region’s No. 1 source for online news. To advertise on this page, contact Mike at [email protected] or at 585-343-3736).

March 2, 2017 - 7:30am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

With multiple 300 games, 800 series and tournament victories, Chris Bardol, an “adopted” Batavian by way of Rochester and Brockport, is in the upper echelon of bowlers in our area.bardol.jpg

But on wood lanes, like the ones he cut his bowling teeth on at Brockport Bowl, the 29-year-old right-hander stands at the very top.

Bardol, owner of North Pole Restaurant in Batavia, added to his accomplishments recently when he captured the $1,000 first prize at the Miller Lanes scratch tournament in Honeoye Falls on Feb. 19 and, two nights later, when he posted 247-267-300—814 in the G&W Vending League at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

Both centers have wood lanes.

In Honeoye Falls, Bardol outlasted 88 other entrants, defeating Brian Hall of Macedon, 238-234, in the title match. He also was the high qualifier in the event with a 935 score for four games – a 233 average.

In the G&W Vending League, Bardol has averaged around 225 over the past four seasons, rolling a handful of perfect games and 800 series along the way.

And just two nights ago, he nearly tacked on a couple more honor scores with a 277-289-218—784 effort on lanes 3-4.  A 10-pin on the 11th ball of the second game cost him another 300 and five 10-pins and a 4-pin in the final game cost him a high 800 series.

His 784 wasn’t the evening’s best, however, as 22-year-old Rochester resident Rich Ehnre exploded for 257-300-265—822 on lanes 5-6.

Bardol said many of today’s young competitive bowlers have problems on wood lanes, since most of them have learned how to bowl on synthetic lanes.

“I definitely don’t shy away from them (wood lanes),” he said, noting that he his familiarity with the way wood lanes transition gives him an advantage.

He also competes in (and co-sponsors) the North Pole/Family Affair Boat Repair League on Thursday nights at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia (another hall with wood lanes), but said he hasn’t been able to dial in there just yet.

“I’ve been banging my head against the wall to manage 630 or 640 (in league play) there,” he said. “It’s been tough as the shot seems to change from week to week.”

Bardol said he plans to defend his T.F. Brown’s scratch singles tournament title at Mancuso’s later this month (see the March tournament listing below).


Two of Orleans County’s finest – Medina residents Curtis Foss and Mike Allis – notched 300 games in league play last month.

Foss, who has split time between WNY and Florida this season, filled in on the Friday Night Mixers League at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion on Feb. 17 to the tune of 268-300-268—836, and now has four 800 series this season alone.  He is averaging 240 for 33 games in the league.

Allis, another high-revving power player, recorded his second 300 game of the season on Feb. 9 in the Thursday Firefighters League at Medina Lanes, and finished with a 750 series.


Bob Hodgson, the retired school teacher who has excelled in league play at Medina Lanes over the years, came through with three strikes in the 10th frame of the title match on Sunday to place first in the 60-and-Over Tournament Bowlers Club event at Pleasure Lanes in Hilton.

Hodgson defeated Charlie Gfleller, 257-246, in an exciting finale that saw the 81-year-old Gfleller end with a flurry of strikes to force Hodgson to double in the 10th.

After a slow start in qualifying (181), Hodgson, 69, said he switched to a “just drilled” Roto-Grip Daredevil and the results were impressive. He finished with 251 and 247 for a 679 series to secure the final spot to match play, and then bowled 258 and 258 to advance to the title game.

Attica’s Joe Trigilio rolled 740 in qualifying and also cashed.


Buffalo residents John Masiello, Bill Swiat and John Stobnicki teamed with Rochester’s Steve Meyer to take first place in the annual Ron Riggi Memorial handicap team tournament at Legion Lanes in Le Roy last weekend.

The winning foursome posted 3,629 with handicap for four games to take home the $1,000 top prize.

Local bowlers Matt Balduf, Mark Brown, Tom Rohl and Scott Culp were second with 3,540, good for $500, and Balduf and Brown were also on the third-place team with Rob Sease and Sam Steffenella, shooting 3,531 and winning $320.

The top seven teams cashed out of the 40 that entered.  In the optional singles event, Shayne Herold of Le Roy placed first with 992 to win $150.

The Scotts Rockin’ team of Tom Borer, Julie Grover and Eileen Nugent placed first with a 2,400 score at the Nunda Fire Company three-person handicap no-tap event at Letchworth Pines in Portageville. Nunda Lumber was second at 2,386 and Once Again placed third at 2,381.

The tourney drew 57 teams.

Individually, Steve Maher of Castile won the singles event with an 858 score. He was followed by Craig Barkley of Portageville (849), Eric Galton of Portageville (844) and John Thompson of Dalton (842).


Teams from Perry Bowling Center and Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia took top honors at the Genesee Region USBC Youth Doubles Tournament at Mount Morris Lanes on Feb. 18-19.

In Division A, Matt Hurlburt and Dennis Van Duser combined for a 1,345 score to move past Skylar Laesser and James Townsend (Mancuso's) and win the $200 scholarship -- $100 apiece. Laesser and Townsend posted 1,320.

Dominic Perkins (Mount Morris) and Townsend placed third with 1,292.

In Division B, Brooke Jurek and Van Duser earned the $200 scholarship with 1,194 -- five pins better than Madelynn Pimm and Brooke Jarkiewicz (Rose Garden Bowl, Bergen).

Haylee Thornley and Zack Wester (Mancuso's) placed third with 1,124.

In Division C, Brock Bigsby and Ben Sputore (Mancuso's) placed first, winning the $200 scholarship, with 1,229.

They were followed by Lily Martin and Jonah Martin (Mancuso's and Jillian Menzie and Jarkiewicz (Rose Garden Bowl) with 1,198 and 1,186, respectively.

The tournament attracted 28 teams. The top three teams in each division received trophies.


Following is a list of tournaments in the Genesee Region during the month of March:

GRUSBC Youth Team, March 4-5, Rose Garden Bowl, Bergen: Squad times are at noon and 3 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. and during the GR Youth Travel League on Sunday. Entry fee is $64 per four-person team. Teams will be divided into three groups, by average, with scholarships and trophies awarded to the top three teams in each division. To enter, call 585-284-2637.

18th annual Bob Bertram Memorial No-Tap, March 4-5, 11-12, Mount Morris Lanes: Squad times are at noon and 3 p.m. each of the four days of the five-person, no-tap handicap event that benefits Livingston County Hospice and Teresa House. First place is $1,000 guaranteed. Entry fee is $125 per team. To enter, call 585-658-2540.

King & Queen Mixed Doubles, March 11, Mancuso Bowling Center, Batavia: Squad times are noon and 2 p.m. for this mixed doubles handicap event, which offers a $500 top prize based on 60 entries. Entry fee is $50 per team. The top 12 teams will advance to match play. To enter, call 716-474-7960.

Sonny Yencer Perry FD No-Tap, March 11-12, Perry Bowling Center: The Perry FD handicap tournament fundraiser returns after a couple-year hiatus with squads at 1, 3 and 5 p.m. on Saturday and 3, 5 and 7 p.m. on Sunday. The entry fee is $60 per team. To enter, call 585-237-6358.

T.F. Brown’s Scratch Eliminator, March 17-18, Mancuso Bowling Center: A $1,500 first prize awaits the winner of this scratch singles tournament that lists squad times (four games) at 6:30 p.m. on March 17 and 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. on March 18. Entry fee is $65. One in five bowlers per squad will advance to the eliminator round (where half the field advances after each game). To enter, call 716-474-7960.

KIWA Three-Person No-Tap, March 18, Medina Lanes: The entry fee is $75 per team for his handicap event, which lists squads at 1 and 3 p.m. The prize fund is based on entries. Call 585-318-4474 to enter.

Five-Person Baker Team Challenge, March 19, Medina Lanes: This handicap five-person event offers a $1,000 first prize and $500 second prize – both guaranteed. Squad times are 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., with each team rolling eight Baker-style games (where players alternate frames) across eight lanes, and then one in five will advance to match play. To enter, call 585-318-4474

60-and-Over Tour Scratch, March 26, Rose Garden Bowl: Open to all bowlers age 60 and over, there will be two three-game qualifying squads, with the top 12, including a guaranteed spot for a bowler in the 65-69, 70-74 and 75-and-over divisions, advancing to match play. To enter, call 585-739-3097.

GRUSBC Association Tournament, March 24-26, 31, April 1-2: Letchworth Pines will host the Team event and Perry Bowling Center will host Doubles & Singles for the annual association tournament, which features five-person teams in Open and Women’s Divisions. Squad times are at 7 p.m. on Fridays, 11 a.m. and 2:30 (or 3 p.m. for D/S) on Saturdays and 11:30 a.m and 3 p.m. on Sundays.  For more information, go to www.bowlgr.com.

(Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column appears every other Thursday on The Batavian, the region’s No. 1 source for online news. To advertise on this page, contact Mike at [email protected] or at 585-343-3736).

February 16, 2017 - 7:04am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.


The affectionately-named “house pro” took it to the house on Sunday by posting a wire-to-wire victory in the 56th annual Genesee Region USBC Masters Tournament at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

Rich Wagner (at left in photo at top along with runner-up Jim Foss) burst onto the bowling scene as a teenager – I think he had the first of his dozens of 300 games at the age of 15 – and, over the next 19 years, has continued to be a dominant league and tournament player in the area.

The Batavia left-hander has been especially tough at Mancuso’s, where he regularly averages around the 230 mark in the Thursday night league (he bowls just once a week) and usually cashes in tournaments there.

Last weekend, he quickly took control of the eight-bowler Peterson Point finals of the Masters by defeating No. 1 qualifier Scott Shields of Batavia, 226-219, in the opening match to move into the top spot.  From there, he stayed in front the rest of the way to capture the $475 first prize along with a special Masters champion ring and plaque.

“It feels great. This is the one I wanted,” Wagner said. “I’m kind of speechless right now.”

Wagner averaged 215 for his eight games on Sunday and 216 overall during the scratch singles tournament, which started on Saturday with qualifying (four games) and semifinal (top 16, four games) rounds.

Seventy-two bowlers entered the event, which was contested on the challenging Kegel Beaten Path oil pattern – a 41-foot condition that created an “out-of-bounds” outside of the second arrow.

“I played a completely different shot than I normally do here – the second arrow. Usually I play up the gutter. I just had to keep focused and tried to stay clean,” Wagner said, who added he received “sound advice” from his father, Rich, who cheered him on during the finals.

Ironically, in an age where new bowling balls are being released to the public on what seem a weekly basis, Wagner uses a Storm X-Factor Ace (circa 2004) and a Jet Altitude (2011).

“The Ace is almost old enough to have a learner’s permit,” he joked.

It was the first Masters title for Wagner, a corrections officer who found success in late November – winning two of three matches -- as a contestant on the Buffalo-based TV show, "Beat The Champ."

After beating Shields in the first game on Sunday, Wagner built a 177-point lead after a sixth-game, a 217-180 win over eventual runner-up Jim Foss of Medina. He coasted home despite losing his last two matches.

Wagner posted a 5-3 match game record in the finals, and amassed 327 Peterson Points -- 90 more than Foss. Bowlers are awarded Peterson Points based on match victories (30 points for a win, 15 for a tie) and score in relation to 200.

Foss earned $325 for placing second, and Shields won $225 for his third-place finish.  Foss reached the finals at Livingston Lanes in Geneseo in 2013 but was unable to bowl as he was in a car accident on the way to the tournament. Shields was the runner-up in 2014 at Medina Lanes.

Defending champion Scott Culp of Lima was fourth, good for $175, and was followed by Rick Lee of Mount Morris ($150), Nate Wright of Batavia ($135), Joe Trigilio of Attica ($120) and Brian Weber of Perry ($110).

The top 16 bowlers out of the 72 who entered cashed. Other cashers were Jason Quilliam of Batavia ($90), Curtis Foss of Medina ($90), Brady Weber of Perry ($85), Bob Santini of Mount Morris ($85), Mike Pettinella of Batavia ($80), Scott Allis of Medina ($80), Rob Stefani of Batavia ($75) and Jeff Wolinski of Perry ($75).

To view final standings, qualifying and semifinal scores, go to www.bowlgr.com.


A not-so-funny thing happened to Rick Lee on his way to a possible 800 series in the Wednesday Night Labatts Classic League on Feb. 1 at Mount Morris Lanes.

The 46-year-old right-hander had already posted games of 300 and 265 on lanes 3-4, putting himself in position for his second USBC-certified 800.

Unfortunately, in the eighth frame of the last game, he stuck at the foul line and fell onto the lane – over the foul line – which cost him his pinfall. After gathering himself, he left the 10-pin on the spare ball for an open frame.

He came back with four straight strikes, but the damage was done. The 223 third game resulted in a 788 total.

Obviously, Lee, a sales engineer for Frontier Communications, was disappointed.

“You get that close, and to come up shy by sticking and going over the foul line …,” he said. “And the thing is that I always drag my left foot to start my approach to make sure it slides. I’m real cautious about sticking.”

Still, Lee – using a Storm IQ Tour -- registered his fourth perfect game and raised his average to 229.

He said he changed his game a couple years ago, opting to throw a straighter line with more speed, and has raised his average from the low 200s.

Longtime league and tournament bowler Jim Passarell of Albion finally entered the 300 circle as he posted a perfect game on Feb. 6 while substituting in the Sneezy’s Monday Night League at Oak Orchard Bowl.

“I came close many times and had a couple of non-sanctioned 300s, but on Monday night things fell into place,” said Passarell, a 62-year-old right-hander who bowls regularly in the Thursday Firefighters League at Medina Lanes.

The fleet parts manager for Kistner Concrete in East Pembroke said he played an inside line on lanes 5-6 while one of his two Storm Marvel Pearl bowling balls – a “pin up” version “that I knew would turn the corner.”

His magic touch eluded him a bit after the opening 300 as he finished with a 645 series.

In any event, he now has his perfect game to go along with the 810 series he rolled in February 1990 in league play at Oak Orchard Bowl.


It’s not too late to sign up your team for the 21st annual Betty Ellison “Strike Out for Crossroads House” fundraiser this weekend at Mancuso Bowling Center.

Although the Friday night and Saturday 6 p.m. squads are full, openings remain for the Saturday 3 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. squads.

The entry fee is $100 per team and all proceeds – there is no prize money – will go to benefit Crossroads House, a comfort home for the dying.

This year’s tournament is dedicated to the late Joe Gerace, a lifelong Batavian who organized many teams over the years.  Gerace passed away on Nov. 17 at the age of 80.

To enter, contact Tara Lowder at 585-409-0136.

Medina Lanes will be hosting the Webster-Bane Memorial no-tap singles tournament at 2 p.m. Feb. 26.  The entry fee is $20.  Call Medina Lanes at 318-4474 for details.

For information on other tournaments this month, scroll down to the Feb. 2 Pin Points column.


Thirty-six teams and onlookers combined to raise $1,890 for Genesee Cancer Assistance at the Curt Haight Memorial four-person no-tap tournament on Jan. 21 at Mancuso’s.

The Rochester team of Steve Meyer, John Martorella Sr., Norm Bialuski and Kara Mangiola placed first, winning $900, and the team of Mark Brown of Attica, Kai Clark of Rochester, Traci Spanitz of Rochester and Rob Sease of Brockport was second, winning $500.

The top six teams cashed.


Mount Morris Lanes is hosting the 11th annual Genesee Region USBC Youth Doubles Tournament this weekend – squads are at noon and 2:30 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. and during the GR Youth Travel League at 1 p.m. on Sunday.

GRUSBC youth members will be teaming up for handicap doubles competition in three divisions, based on their combined averages. Scholarships will be awarded to the first-place teams in each division and trophies will go to the top three spots in each division.

The entry fee is $32 per team.  Contact Tom Fluker, GRUSBC president, at 585-284-2637, to enter.

In recent Travel League action, Scopano’s I maintained its five-point lead over Batavia Strike Force with a split against third-place Batavia X-Factor at Mancuso’s on Feb. 5.

Individually, Matt Baker and Skylar Laesser rolled 606 and 601 series, respectively, to lead the boys while Emma Miller had 584 to lead the girls.


Jason Belmonte’s two-year drought is over.

The three-time Professional Bowlers Association Player of the Year won his seventh major title by defeating Anthony Simonsen of Austin, Texas, 221-204, in a battle of two-handers in the finals of the Barbasol PBA Players Championship Sunday at Wayne Webb’s Columbus (Ohio) Bowl.

The Australian pocketed $40,000 for the victory, which is his 13th PBA Tour title overall. Prior to Sunday, his last win was his record third straight USBC Masters in February 2015.

The PBA is back with another live show at 1 p.m. this Sunday on ESPN – the finals of the Tournament of Champions. On Feb. 26, there will be back-to-back live telecasts of the USBC Masters finals and World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s Finals, beginning at 1 p.m.

In other PBA news, 24-year-old E.J. Tackett of Huntington, Ind., was the overwhelming choice as the 2016 GEICO Chris Schenkel Player of the Year, and Francois Lavoie of Quebec City, Canada, was selected as the PBA Rookie of the Year.

Tackett’s year featured four titles, including a victory in the PBA World Championship, and he led the earnings list with $154,900.  Lavoie captured the U.S. Open, a major. En route to his victory, he rolled the first nationally-televised perfect game in the tournament’s 74-year history.

(Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column appears every other Thursday on The Batavian, the region’s No. 1 source for online news. To advertise on this page, contact Mike at [email protected] or at 585-343-3736).

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