Weber's youth leagues booming at Normandy lanes


June 13, 1993|By DON VITEK

2/3 TC Buddy Weber, director of The Young America Bowlers Association at Brunswick Normandy, tries to make bowling fun for youngsters.

Weber has been bowling since he was 7, so he knows the problems facing the youth program from both sides.

"I've always wanted to make bowling fun for the kids," Weber said. "I hope I've succeeded."

Apparently, he has. There are now 80-90 youngsters, boys and girls, enrolled in the program at Normandy.

It is divided into four groups in two divisions: the Bantams (8 and under) and the Preps (9-11) are in Division I and the Junior Varsity (12-14) and Majors (15-21) makes up Division II. Both divisions bowl Saturday mornings.

Each week, in both divisions, a Bowler of the Week is crowned, determined by the highest number of pins over average; at season's end the Bowlers of the Week compete for Bowler of the Year. It's the best bowling against the best.

Jason Harris and Kelly Herzing are the newly crowned Bowlers of the Year, Jason in Division I, Kelly in Division II.

Kelly, 15, started bowling two years ago.

dad thought it would be a good idea," Kelly said, "And I found out he was right, it's a lot of fun."

She lives with her dad, Henry, and her mother, Joy, in Sykesville. The junior at Glenelg High School throws a 10-pound ball. With a 100 average, she threw a career high game of 168, a high series of 364. And last month she won the championship, receiving a $100 scholarship, a trophy and an All-Star jacket.

Jason, 10, started bowling when he was 6. The Woodlawn resident lives with his parents, Gertrude Wilson and Stanley Harris, both bowlers. Wilson carries a 139 average at Brunswick Columbia and Harris maintains a 189 average at Fair Lanes Woodlawn.

Jason will be entering the sixth grade at the Academy of Potential and Purpose next fall. He's averaging 127 and has a phenomenal high game of 225, and he picked the right spot to throw it -- the Bowler of the Year tournament. He remembers every game of the five-game series.

"I had a 225 for the first game and then 170, 167, 163 and 172," Jason said.

Weber said, "In the last frame of the series Jason needed two strikes and an eight count to win. He calmly walked onto the

approach, picked up his ball and threw three strikes."

Weber, who lives in Catonsville, attends the University of Baltimore and recently accepted a position with a Hunt Valley firm in his chosen field, accounting.

"Unfortunately, that means that I won't have the time to devote to the youngsters at Normandy," Weber said. "I enjoyed working with the folks at Normandy and, maybe, I'll be able to return later."

Working up to Bowler of Week

Ben Strauss was 68 years old when he began bowling five years ago. The retired letter carrier lives in Columbia and bowls in the Club 55 league at Brunswick Columbia.

"Since the surgery on my knee [in December] I've had to use a 10-pound bowling ball instead of my usual 12-pounder," Strauss said. "Of course, my average went down but now it's on the way back up."

Currently that average is 142. His career high game and set? Both were thrown last month in Week 31 of the season to capture Bowler of the Week.

"Just got a little lucky," Strauss said. "Every one gets hot every once in while."

He posted games of 203 (career high single game), 160 and 153 for a 515 series.

That surpassed his average by 126 pins, locked up Bowler of the Week and secured him a position in the Bowler of the Year tournament.

Bowling for 59 cents a game

Brunswick Columbia will offer games for 59 cents per game to all bowlers who enter summer leagues.

During June, July and August, summer league bowlers will pay only 59 cents per game for open bowling. They also will be entered into the Merchandise Madness Summer Tournament at no extra charge.

& Information: 381-7750.

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