Young bowlers thrive in duckpin league


September 11, 1992|By Donald G. Vitek

Because of a production error, Don Vitek's Thursday bowling column was omitted from many editions of The Anne Arundel County Sun. It will return on Thursday next week. The Friday Morning Kids League at Riviera Bowl, one of the summer leagues that ended Aug. 28, finished with a bunch of happy duckpinners.

In the league's Colt Division are the youngest children, 4- and 5-year-olds with some 6-year-olds. The Pinto Division is for youths 6 to 9 and, in some cases, 10 years old. Youngsters from 10 to 14 bowl in the Bronco Division.

"If some of the kids are just starting to bowl, I'll see that they bowl in a division with the younger kids until their skill level develops enough for them to compete against the older youngsters," says Riviera manager Glenna Grimes.

The division winners were:

* Colt Division -- Ryan McKenzie, Amy Anello, Ryan Asdenti.

* Pinto Division -- Sherry Robbins, Chris Robbins, Eddie Dolch.

* Bronco Division -- George Shanks, Dave Duvall, Chris Hautala, Mike Eck.

Each young bowler received a trophy for participating.

High average for the Pinto Divi

sion went to Matt McKenzie, whose brother, Ryan, was on the winning team in the Colt Division.

Matt, 9, lives in Pasadena with his parents, Debbie and Kevin, his brother and the littlest McKenzie, 20-month-old Melanie.

Matt, who's been bowling since he was 5, posted an 84 average to top the Pinto Division. His high game for the season was 100-plus.

"Matt loves to bowl almost as much as he likes the Orioles," his mother said. "If he's not bowling, Matt is always ready to help out at the soup kitchen [Christ Lutheran] at the Inner Harbor or to help deliver food for the North County Emergency Outreach Network."

The competitive fires that burn in the Sunset Elementary School fourth-grader might also have made him a standout in other sports, but doctors have forbidden him to play contact sports.

Matt was born with malformed lenses, and is legally blind. Contact sports could further damage his sight.

On the lanes, Matt is a tiger. He can bowl on my team any time.

The winter youth league begins at Riviera Bowl on Saturday. Guess who'll be first in line to sign up? You can bet on it.

No wonder Grimes says, "I love to watch the kids progress with duckpin bowling. First, they're throwing it between their legs, pretty soon it's one-handed, and then, a little later, they start beating the stuffin' out of you."

Here's what the National Duckpin Youth Association-sanctioned leagues will offer.

* Game and set awards for pins over average. Special achievement awards and individual and team awards.

* Boys and girls bowling high games may be honored as stars of the month and year.

* The kids can bowl in the Coca-Cola National Duckpin Youth Championships, with state and regional champions advancing to the National Finals June 25-27.

The National Amateur Bowlers Inc. will be at Fair Lanes Annapolis this weekend. First prize is a guaranteed $1,000. Information: (410) 266-0700.

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