Pro Bowlers Circuit Isn't All Tv Glitz

BOWLING

It's Expensive, Grueling, Exacting Work

September 16, 1990|By Donald Vitek

Being a professional bowler isn't all television glitz, something a Howard County bowler can attest to.

The main qualifications are: first, maintaining a 190 average for two years; second, producing three character references -- other professionals are nice; and third, attending the Professional Bowlers Association school for three days.

But that's the start.

Terry Logan, born and raised in Baltimore, but now living in Catonsville, does all his bowling at Brunswick Normandy Lanes on Route 40 -- except when he's on the Senior Tour.

He started with duckpins, like any Baltimore boy of his age. But 28 years ago he switched to tenpins.

Two years ago, when turning 50 made him eligible for the Senior Tour, he became a professional, and the competition is steep.

"I checked my records and I've averaged over 200 for 500 games," Logan said. "Currently, I'm averaging 204 and last year (1989-1990 season) I had four sets over 700."

One of those sets was a 777.

It's tough on the tour, he says: "Even in the regional events, where the competition is not quite so fierce, you'll still need to average about 210 to cash in," Logan said.

Logan, employed at the Department of Defense for 25 years, has cashed in two national tournaments, the AFM Bobcat Senior Classic at St. Charles, Mo., and the Showboat (Las Vegas) Invitational in June 1990 by taking 56th place, good for $900.

He also cashed in the regional event in the Showboat at Atlantic City in December 1989. Of the 17 regional events, Logan bowled in several. He also made four of the national tournaments.

But touring doesn't come cheap. Entry fees, travel, room and meals, equipment and other expenses average about $700 to $900 per week.

"Right now I'm paying my own way, but I'm trying to get a sponsor," Logan said. "It's very expensive on tour."

Before Logan went on the Professional Senior Tour, he had done well in local tournaments: In 1981 he won both the scratch and handicap divisions of the Greater Baltimore Bowling Association. In 1985 he won the GBBA handicap division. Even after pulling a tendon he continued to bowl, although with a lighter ball.

If you'd like to see a professional bowler in action, you can catch Logan every Tuesday night in the Doubles League at Brunswick Normandy and on Wednesdays in the Anytime/Funtime League, also at Normandy.

"I just like to bowl" is the way Logan puts it. "It's a heck of a lot of fun and the competition makes it interesting. On the tour you get to meet and bowl with some of the men who are legends in bowling, like Earl Anthony and Don Johnson, both Hall of Famers."

A few words on the PBA Senior Tour:

It began in 1981 with one tournament. This year there have been eight national tournaments, all televised. PBA commissioner Joe Antenora projects the 1991 Senior Tour will schedule 12 events and possibly as many as 15 tournaments.

The PBA Senior Tour will conclude its schedule for the fourth consecutive year at Fort Pierce Bowl and the $70,000 Treasure Coast PBA Senior Open at Fort Pierce, Fla. The event will run from Thursday, Oct. 18, through Thursday, Oct. 25. Sports Channel America will tape the championship finals on Oct. 25 from 8 to 10 p.m. (EST) with the telecast to air Saturday, Oct. 27, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. (EDT).

*** Forest Hill Lanes in Forest Hill, Md., will host the National Amateurs Bowlers Inc. (NABI) tournament on Oct. 13 and 14. Prize money will be guaranteed.

*** The American Bowling Congress has announced that the awards for bowling an 800 series have been doubled to four; the bowlers can choose from a ring, desk clock, wristwatch or desk/pen set.

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