Butt, 16, takes youth league by storm

November 29, 1992|By Glenn Small | Glenn Small,Staff Writer

Keith Butt used to play baseball, and he used to play soccer.

But now there's only one sport for the 16-year-old Dundalk High School student.

"Right now," he says. "Bowling is it."

In fact, if all goes as he expects, he'll one day be bowling for a living in the Professional Bowlers Association -- after bowling in college, of course.

To those who have watched him bowl at Country Club Lanes, they say Keith has what it takes to make it as a pro bowler.

He grew up in Baltimore, but two years ago moved to Savannah, Ga., where his father, Robert Romberger, was stationed at a U.S. Army base in nearby Fort Stewart.

However, Keith's family returned to Baltimore a few weeks ago, and he signed up for a Saturday youth league at Country Club.

"He kind of took the league by storm," said Cary Pon, coordinator of youth programs at Country Club.

After four weeks, Keith has high average (213), high game (278) and high series (699) for the senior division youth league, said Kevin Leist, his new coach.

"He's a good bowler all right," said Leist. "He's very smooth with his style. Good timing and good release. And he has a real knowledge of the game. He knows what he's doing."

Unlike a lot of bowlers his age, and even some pro bowlers, Keith seems to know how to quickly spot his mistakes and correct them.

"He knows how to make adjustments all by himself," said Pon. "He has knowledge that a kid his age usually doesn't have. The kid is definitely on his way. He'll definitely turn pro."

Before that, however, Keith has his sights set on a bowling scholarship, preferably to Florida State University, which has a good program. He already knows what they look for in young bowlers.

"For the most part, besides talent, they look for attitude, temperment and consistency," said Keith. "I know I have to work on my temperament, because sometimes I get angry. When I get angry, my whole game goes downhill."

He likes to watch pro bowling on television and his favorite bowlers are Del Ballard and Danny Wiseman, who also grew up in Dundalk, but now lives in Arizona.

"He's awesome," said Keith, speaking of Wiseman. "He's got the smoothest approach I've ever seen . . . I'd really like to meet him."

Like many good tenpin bowlers, Keith has an arsenal of bowling balls -- two strike balls, a Pro Rhino and an AMF Black Sumo, and a spare ball, a Pink Hammer -- all 16 pounds.

Besides his temperament, Keith says he also needs to work on his spare making. He also wants to learn how to put more revolutions on his strike ball.

Country Club Honor scores

John Fantini not only shot a 300 game in the Baltimore Classic Scratch League, but had an 815 three-game series (259, 256, 300.)

Rolling on the same league and same pair of lanes, Jack Hoskins shot a 299 game and 754 set (255, 200, 299), Brian Thacker shot a 764 (259, 247, 258) and Dave Logan shot a 290 game and 711 set (209, 212, 290).

Learn how to coach youths

A week from today a class to teach adults how to coach youth bowlers is scheduled. Cost is $16 and reservations are required. For information, call Dick Dare at (410) 879-4477.

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