Butt, Elder take titles at Odenton


January 23, 1994|By DON VITEK

Keith Butt captured the scratch division and Ricky Elder was the handicap winner in the Junior Bowlers Tour Delaware Valley Conference event at Bowl America Odenton on Jan. 8.

Elder, 15, lives in Bowie and attends Bowie High. Bowling for about five years, he carries a 180-plus average and has a high career game of 257 and a high set of 612.

He bowls in the YABA Saturday morning league and the Arundel travel league at Crofton Bowling Centre.

As with most serious bowlers, Elder knows exactly what is right and what is wrong with his game.

"My release isn't as consistent as I'd like," he said. "That's something I have to work on and it is getting better."

To that end, Elder practices just about every day and there's no doubt what his future plans are regarding bowling.

"I will turn pro," he said.

Travis Fisher of Severn was second to Elder in the handicap division. A junior at Old Mill High School, he bowls in the YABA at Fort Meade Lanes.

Bowling for half of his 16 years, Fisher averages 165 with a high game of 276 and high set of 630-plus using a 16-pound Torq ball.

Butt bowls at Country Club Lanes and works part time in the World Class Pro Shop that's located inside the center.

The Dundalk High School senior is averaging about 200, his career high game is 279, and his high set is 699.

He started bowling when he was 4. Now 17, he owns a bunch of bowling balls, and he's starting to collect first-place finishes and scholarship money.

Last month at Crofton Bowling Centre, he won the boys scratch division in the Maryland Tenpin Bowling Council tournament and a $1,000 scholarship.

Butt is quick to give a lot of credit for his accomplishments to others.

"John Gaines [partner in World Class Pro Shop at Country Club] is always ready to help me," Butt said. "And my YABA coaches on Saturday morning, Kevin Leist and Fred Wood, have been great."

The JBT began in 1975, and tournaments are run from mid-September to mid-August in eight states -- New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Delaware and Maryland.

In 1988, the JBT started its scholarship program and has awarded $96,939. Last season, just over $30,000 was awarded.

The bowlers range in age from 4 to 21 with averages from 40 to 220. Because there's both a scratch and a handicap division, everyone has the opportunity to compete.

Super Bowl tournament

Annapolis Bowl will play host to the Super Bowl Weekend NABI tournament Saturday and next Sunday. First place is a guaranteed $1,500.

Information: (410) 266-0700.

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