The Baltimore Women's Bowling Association's 35th annual tenpin championships ended Sunday at Bowl America Odenton, with 170 four-woman teams, 319 doubles teams and 638 single bowlers competing.
This is what bowling is all about. Hall of Famers and the average league member bowling side-by-side with fun and camaraderie the hallmark of the day.
The winners were:
* Handicap team -- the Flying Pins -- Linda Porter, Sandra Foster, Taz Koh and Pauline Roger -- a handicapped 2,758 score.
* Scratch team -- Flo Cichoki, Barb Bussey, Eva Diekman and Jo Malle, a powerful 2,341 score.
* Handicap doubles -- Connie Hoover and Karen Quasky, 1,418 score.
* Scratch doubles -- Hall of Famer (1987 inductee) Ada Bylsma and Jean Williford, a 1986 Hall ofFame inductee, with an awesome 1,199 score.
* Handicap singles --Barb Caffey with a solid 725.
* Scratch singles -- Carol Tracey, who threw a 666.
* All-Event handicap division -- Heidi Jones, who came down from Thunderhead Lanes in Westminster, with a 2,110.
* All-Event scratch division -- Ada Bylsma with a strong 1,836 score.
Some fine bowlers did some great bowling, but after the dust had cleared the thing that I'll remember is a lot of women had a lot of fun.
"I just enjoy bowling," Williford said. There was no mention of the many honors, the many tournaments won, no frame-by-frame description of her 300 game, her career-high 784 series, her fine 196 average, simply, "I enjoy bowling.
That was the same comment, almost word for word, from an average league bowler who likes to compete in tournaments.
Betty McConnell, bowling with Liz Peck, Barb Thompson and Val Allison, carries a 148 average with a high game of 214 and high series of 517.
"I do my very best, but most of all it's the fun and excitement of bowling, of meeting lots of fellow bowlers from all over," she said. "I love to bowl."
As the BWBA event was closing just a few miles away at Greenway Bowl Odenton, the youth bowlers were busy with their own tenpin tournament.
The regional National Junior Bowling Championship event drew bowlers from 10 area centers to Greenway Bowl and Dundalk Fair Lanes to compete for spots in the state finals at Cumberland on April 28.
There were 10 divisions in eight age groups competing from under grade 2 to high school students.Highlights at Greenway included:
* Grade 2 and under boys handicap, Michael Blair, Brunswick Normandy, 668 series.
* Grade 2 and under girls handicap, Gabrielle Johnson, Woodlawn, 616 series.
* Grades 3-5 boys handicap, Michael Womack, Fair Lanes Rolling Road, 691 set.
* Grade 3-5 girls handicap, Jacqui Williams, Reisterstown BowlAmerica, 673 series, which tied Krystal Brady and Crystal Anderson. Jacqui won the roll-off.
* Grades 6-8 boys handicap, Corey Hill, Brunswick Columbia, 704 set.
* Grades 6-8 girls handicap, Margaret Barnes, Brunswick Normandy, 690 series.
* High school boys handicap, Toby Smith, Woodlawn, 683 set.
* High school girls handicap, Rachael Kiessling, Greenway Bowl Odenton, 685 set.
* High school boys scratch, Billy Shupe, Brunswick Columbia, 524 set.
* High schoolgirls scratch, Kathy Brady, Bowl America Glen Burnie, 641 series.
On the other side of town at Dundalk Fair Lanes, Chris Moore of FairLanes Southdale, had a nice 709 series in the grades 3-5 boys handicap division, and in the 9-12 girls scratch division, Tina Fick, who bowls at Bowl America Glen Burnie, had a fine 597 series.
On Monday, stop in at Bowl America Odenton, where you will have the chance to see your police officers in action, shooting spares instead of 9mm pistols.
Bill Daywalt, a 12-year veteran of the Anne Arundel County Police Department, is presenting the second annual Anne Arundel County Police F.O.P. Lodge 70 Bowling Tournament, open to all police officers and civilian members of police departments in the state.
This tournament is raising money for a project very dear to Daywalt's heart, DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education), a program aimed at school-age kids to make them aware of how to say no to drugs.
Kendra Cameron, 17, bowling in the Saturday Morning Youth League at Crofton Centre, threw games of 258, 228 and 214 for a 700 series.
"I didn't even give it a thought (the 700 series)," Kendra said. "I was just talking with the other kids and enjoying myself, then when it got close, I just thought, Oh, well, I'll just keep throwing the ball and see what happens."
Donald G. Vitek's Bowling column appears every Thursday in the Anne Arundel County Sun. Bowlers are urged to give Don a call with scores and tidbits at 247-0850.