Johnson cashes in, at family's expense


July 11, 1993|By DON VITEK

Janice Johnson of Street bowled in three leagues last season -- the Monday Early Bird, the Friday Night Mixed at Bel Air Bowl and the Thursday Kings and Queens league at Forest Hill Lanes.

In the National Amateur Bowlers Inc. Memorial Day tournament at Crofton Bowling Centre, the whole Johnson family tried to pick up a part of the $33,000 prize fund.

Janice Johnson beat them all -- her husband, Kenneth, a 184-average bowler; her daughters, Renee and Nadine; her son-in-law, Cliff Johnson and her nephew, Steven Clark.

Janice Johnson carries a 172 average with a high career game of 266, a high series of 609, and she was ready for this tournament.

"I had Marty Letscher [Bel Air Bowl Pro Shop operator and PBA member] drill a new ball for me," she said. "A Columbia Power Torq. I wasn't even there when he drilled it. He used the hand measurements that he has on file for me."

It worked like a charm. When the last pin fell May 31, Johnson had finished in seventh place and picked up a check for $600.

Cashing in at Las Vegas

Bobby Shuyler, born and raised in Havre de Grace, started his tenpincareer at Harford Lanes in Aberdeen in the YABA program, but now lives in Crofton and bowls at that center.

To pick up his check from NABI, he had to travel a little farther than Johnson did. To be exact he had to go to Las Vegas.

Shuyler, a bowler for 26 of his 31 years, is pretty serious about his game.

"I bowled in seven leagues last year," he said. "All of them at Crofton. Since I'm in the center so much it was natural for me to bowl with Dotty [Shelton, who works the control counter there] ++ and her son, Brant, and Lou Castleman, who also works there."

That four-member team (the Crofton Keglers) flew to Las Vegas for the10th annual NABI Nationals at the Showboat Hotel, Casino and Bowling Center. The event consisted of 12 tournaments from June 18-25. Over 2,000 amateur bowlers from every part of the nation competed.

Shuyler carries a 188 average with a career high game of 288 and a high set of 694. He throws a 16-pound ball, a Burgundy Hammer and a Torq, fitted and drilled by Jim Long of Crofton Pro Shop.

Shuyler and his teammates didn't travel to Las Vegas in vain. They fired an awesome scratch 2,390 total for their three-game series and cashed the first-place prize of $2,000.

"I shot a 502 set, so I wasn't very happy," Shuyler said. "But Dotty and Lou bowled just great."

A striking figure at 92

Carl Mohr, a Bel Air resident, bowls in the Tuesday Churchville Golden Agers league on Tuesday at Bel Air Bowl during the winter season and carries a 147 average.

He used to bowl in "five leagues, when I was younger and then I carried about a 175 average."

He bowled well enough in the winter league to help his team to a first-place finish. That league ended just a few weeks after Mohr celebrated his 92nd birthday in May.

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