Aluisy makes smooth transition from candlepins to duckpins


January 30, 1994|By DON VITEK

Jon Aluisy first picked up a duckpin ball seven years ago at Seidel's on Belair Road. Last season he averaged 143 in a single league, the Monday night Greater Grace.

"I remember the day he walked in here," said Lance O'Hara, partner with his dad, Bob, in the center. "He asked where the candlepins were."

The candlepins were up in New England, where Aluisy had held one of the top averages in the area.

Born and raised in Scituate, Mass., a small town about 15 miles south of Boston, Aluisy averaged 125 before moving to the Baltimore area. He lives in Fullerton with his wife, Roseann, and 13-year-old son, Gabriel.

What are candlepins?

"A lot like duckpins," Aluisy said, "With some differences that make the game extremely difficult."

The candlepin is about 16 inches high (a duckpin is about nine inches) and a little more slender than a duckpin. The ball is about the size of a softball and weighs, tops, 2 pounds, 8 ounces. Any deadwood on the lane after you bowl stays there. If the deadwood is in the channel, it's cleared away.

Aluisy said, "[That] makes for some interesting shots. Sometimes the best thing you can do is throw the ball as slow as you can. Other times you have to play the deadwood instead of the standing pins."

Aluisy has a career high duckpin game of 237 and a high set of 565. A few years ago in a pro league out of Greenway East, he averaged 145.

This year, on the first day of the 1993-94 season, he fired a 521 set.

Bowling for college

Keith Butt of Dundalk bowls in the morning YABA league at Country Club Lanes, and with an arsenal of 16-pound bowling balls he's rapidly paving the road to college with scholarship money won on the tenpin lanes.

Last season he averaged 194; this year that's increased to 205.

"I've been bowling since I was about 4 years old," Butt said. "I'm still learning. John [Gaines] helps me a lot. And my coaches in the YABA, Kevin Leist and Fred Wood, have been great."

If you don't find the senior at Dundalk High School on the lanes, chances are you'll find him helping in the pro shop at Country Club.

He's posted a career high game of 279, his high set is just one pin short of that elusive 700 series. And the 17-year-old is adjusting to different lane conditions and different tournament formats like a veteran.

At Crofton Bowling Centre in December, in the Maryland Tenpin Council Scholarship Tournament against some of the best high school seniors in the state, he put together back-to-back three-game sets of 547 and 571 to win the boys scratch division and a $1,000 scholarship.

A month later, Jan. 9, at Bowl America Odenton in the Junior Bowlers Tour in a format that featured five qualifying games, three match games and a stepladder final, he repeated his victory.

Winning the JBT boys scratch division earned him another check for his scholarship fund.

Women's all-star tour

The Women's All-Star Association kicks off a 15-city tour in five Eastern states with a tournament March 26 at Brunswick Perry Hall.

The Brunswick-Perry Hall Open will be conducted by Glenn English, manager of the center.

The next day, March 27, the tour will stop at Bel Air Bowl for the Roto Grip-Bel Air Open.

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