Gartner, Taylor step up nicely at Normandy Lanes Transition smooth to adult league

BOWLING

February 14, 1993|By DON VITEK

Jim Gartner and Mike Taylor Jr. were excellent youth league tenpin bowlers who couldn't wait until they could take their talents to the adult leagues.

"They started in the adults league this season," said Terry McDonald of Normandy Lanes. "And they're doing great."

Gartner, 17, a junior at Catonsville High, lives in Catonsville and bowled for three years in the Young American Bowling Alliance leagues.

"We lived in Southern California before moving to Baltimore about a year ago," Gartner said. "And the competition in the youth leagues in California is much tougher than here. I want to return to California for my college education and bowl at that level, so I need the increased competition that an adult league gives me."

Throwing a 15 1/2 -pound Rhine Pro ball, he's holding a 185 average in the Friday BG&E league at Normandy and has a career-high game of 278, a high series of 701.

Gartner threw that 278 game on Jan. 29. It was the base for a 658series.

Taylor, 17, is a senior at Catonsville High and has made the transition to the adult leagues without a bit of trouble.

The Catonsville resident is bowling in the Friday BG&E at Normandy and the Monday night Bowlers Discount Pro league at Kings Point. A Baltimore native, he started bowling duckpins but soon made the switch to tenpins.

"Right now he's talking to Morehead State [Ky.] about bowling for them," said his dad, Mike Sr. "This is Mike's first year out of the youth leagues and he's doing great in both adult leagues."

He's averaging 195, and on Jan. 29 he threw games of 258, 268 and 220 for a 746 series, a career high. His high game is 279.

A week later, Feb. 5, at Kings Point Lanes, he posted games of 254, 216 and 227 for a 697 set.

Success at a young age

B. J. Neubauer and Danny Lichtenstein are two young bowlers, 10 and 12 years old, respectively, who in a few years may be following Gartner and Taylor into the adult leagues with equal success.

B. J. is a seventh-grader at Dunloggin Middle school and lives in Ellicott City. An avid baseball card and comic book collector, B. J. was Bowler of the Week in Division II for week 20 in the YABA league at Normandy lanes.

He had a score that was 84 pins over his average. His average is 142, and he has a career-high game of 204, a high set of 512.

"Right now he's throwing a 12-pound Rhino [bowling ball]," his father, Bill, said. "I think that it's about time that he moved up to a 14-pound ball."

Lichtenstein already has his new bowling ball -- the 8-pound Ebonite he's using was a December birthday present. The fourth-grader at Phelps Luck Elementary School said, "I think the new ball has really helped me bowl better."

With a 67 average and a high game of 114, the newcomer to the youth leagues (he started bowling in the Normandy Saturday morning YABA in September) threw that 114 game as part of a series that was 45 pins over his average.

That was good enough to make him the Division I Bowler of the Week for Week 20 of the season.

Danny lives in Columbia with his parents, Paul and Joanne, and )) became interested in the youth league by a chance encounter.

"Last summer my mom and I went bowling and I really liked it, so I asked to be allowed to bowl in the youth league that Normandy was advertising, and my mom said, 'OK,' " he said.

Danny attributes his Bowler of the Week crown to the fact "that I'm throwing the ball pretty straight now. And I have my own ball."

Tournament for seniors

On Friday, Brunswick Normandy will play host to a Senior Handicapped Singles Tournament at noon with lunch following the tournament.

L RSVP by Thursday. For more information, call (410) 465-0355.

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