A big congratulations should be sent Joe Smith’s way! Joe took part in the Pro Series’ 10-stringer this past weekend up at Lakeside Lanes in Manchester, New Hampshire. Joe torched the lanes to the tune of a 209 string!
Joe opened up with hammer followed quickly by a spare. How does Joe top that? He throws four more hammers! Joe finishes up the first half at 127 after the 9 box in the seventh.
Smith followed the open box with two spares and another hammer in the 10th! The hammer gave him 200 on the nose, and the fill was the difference in going over 200! The 209 was high for the tournament with some HUGE scores all day long.
Congratulations Joe, I’m certainly glad we aren’t bowling you this Friday night!
Hello everyone. A little behind here, but working on catching up with content. Week 24 has come and gone this season, and we had some solid scoring this week. Bobby Whitcomb’s 128-148-140 for a 416 total led the way Friday night. Some other huge scores in week 24 with Jay Simoneau (subbing for Malden I) hitting 146-131-134 for a 411! Rounding out the 400’s were Ed Woodside (09-32-62 – 403), Jeff Surette (45-19-38 – 402), Rich Moran (72-22-08 – 402), and Al Kecyk (15-56-30 – 401). Good scoring overall on this night, congrats to those guys hitting over 4!
Hello everyone! I am thrilled to report a new addition to the candlepin world on the newsfront from Frank De Luca! Frank has started Alley Chat – the Interweb’s only podcast for candlepin news, insight, and jokes – definitely jokes – but also insight!
Head over to Alley Chat, take a listen and be sure to provide some feedback. The first episode covers the last doubles Pro Series event, the ladies ladder series over at Classic Candlepins, and Friday Night Pro week 22.
Good afternoon everyone. These updates should be coming with more frequency I’m happy to report. We had a tough, tough match with Lucky Strike this past Friday.
Herculean battle the last two boxes between Brian Fournier and Jeff Surette in the second string. Brian converted the 7-9-10 for a spare, and with the fill and the end result of the tenth box forced Surette to get a mark and get an eight fill for the win. Surette made his spare, and filled it with seven and we escaped with 1 point. Surette was high on the evening and for the whole league posting scores of 138-144-126 for a 408 total. Good job Jeff!
Hello everyone, and welcome back to Everything Candlepin. I know it’s been a while, and I have no one to blame but myself. I know my time was tied up with a multitude of things, but some of that has cleared up, and it’s getting to the point I can devote some time to the site – making you and me very happy campers.
On February 16th, up at Riverwalk Lanes in Amesbury, MA., Classic Candlepins had their third ladder series – this time featuring the women of candlepin bowling. The top five qualifiers for this ladder were Deb Regan, Melissa Caisse, Janet Poch, Nikki McKeever, and Tina Ward. The Riverwalk version works the same way as the Leda Lanes show of the past, with the five seed facing the four seed; the winner of that match facing the three seed, and so on. The first match of the ladder featured the five seed Deb Regan facing the four seed in Melissa Caissie.
Our first match of the day allowed us to see some great bowling right off the bat. Regan had some slight difficulties finding her spot through the first few boxes, but by the end of the first string, she was firing on all cylinders. She was able to turn a 60 after seven boxes in a nice 117 with a strike, spare, spare to finish. Deb was able to take a small lead into the second string after Melissa finished her string that included three marks as well, for a 110 total. Many of the Classic Candlepins viewers will recall that Melissa has been slowly coming back from a knee injury and 110 is not too shabby!
Regan came right out of the gate with a spare in the first box of the second string and that mark actually made it four in a row for her (going back to the first string), but the good news for her in string two ended there. Deb was bowling phenomenally throughout the string, it was just a matter of not being able to break anything up. Pinning is the name of the game, and though she was open the last five, 9,X,X,X,9 is a pretty good ending if the marks aren’t happening. She finished the string with a 101 which is pretty good considering the lack of luck she had on the lanes. Caisse was riding the same boat that Regan was on, and the splits were clearly evident over the course of the second string. Melissa managed a mark in the fourth box and used it to cut into the lead, but unfortunately, it did not get much better than that for her after that. She finished with a 99, and found herself down nine pins heading into the third string, 218-209.
As with any match in candlepin it boils down to the bowler that was able to make the most of their adjustments. Midway through the third string, Deb was able to find her spot again and get some better results than she had previously. In boxes 4-7, Regan ran off spare, spare, ten, ten, and was able to push the overall lead to 25, 295-270 with three boxes to go. Caissie, battling all day, threw a strike in the seventh, but all hope evaporated after she was couldn’t throw the double and was faced with a split. Caissie finished the third string with a 97 and Regan had a 108. The 108 allowed Regan to win the match with the final score being 326 – 306.
It was a hard fought battle from the get go. It was fun to watch, and to announce. Deb Regan moves on and will face Janet Poch in the quarterfinals.
What’s your favorite Pro Series alley that you have bowled at and why? I would have to say Big 20 in Maine. The approaches are nice and smooth on all the lanes and the pins have some give and take so its not deflating like some houses where you get no breaks at all.
What’s your favorite Pro Series format and why? I would say the singles format is my favorite because I know what to expect for myself and there’s no variables I can’t put into play and there’s no added pressure of letting somebody else down like in a doubles tournament.
Most memorable Pro Series moment? So far my most memorable Pro Series memory is placing second in the doubles tournament. Unfortunately [it] is my only place in the Pro Series so far but I would definitely say that’s my most memorable as of right now.
Best match you’ve been involved in outside the Pro Series?
My best match isn’t really a match in a league or tournament – it was my single matches when I first started bowling on the Sunday night league. After the league I would pull money matches against a Barber and he actually taught me a lot in those matches – how to hit shots and actually make things happen with the pins I didn’t know could happen; where today I can do that now. It really is what made me into the bowler I am today. I didn’t win some money from them but you know it taught me how to win those match types of matches.
It’s 2014. It’s November. You know what that means? The 2014 Men’s International Candlepin Championship has been going on all week at Academy Lanes in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Twenty four teams comprised of the best bowlers from Canada and the United States are here for some candlepin action. The tournament divides the teams into two divisions of twelve teams each. Then there are eleven three string matches in the tournament with three on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, and two on Friday. Each match is worth eight point and the top five of each side the make the playoffs. The interesting thing about this tournament is that in the playoffs they switch sides. First, the top two teams get a bye straight into the semifinals. After that, the second place team from the left side faces the fifth place team from right, and vice versa. It adds a really eerie affect to the matches since you haven’t faced the team all week. Have they hit their shots? Have they been able to come from behind? Have they just been that good? You just don’t know. At least you’ve faced the guys on your side so that makes you think so much more before your first ball.
I had the pleasure of bowling in this tournament for the first time last year with Local Flavah a team made up of several Maine bowlers and three guys along with me from Massachusetts. I have to thank the captain Scott Lapierre for getting me to the tournament. The experience is something I will always take with me and cherish forever and I appreciated the opportunity. I had a blast with that team and we managed to get into the playoffs. We ended up falling short against McLaughlin Truck and Trailer, and they went on to win the whole damn thing.
On to 2014. I managed to get my own franchise! But, unfortunately, that’s a different story for another time. This is about the semifinals on the right side of the alley. Academy Lanes had a great week and set themselves up for the bye against A+ Accounting in the last match of the round robin. Academy took the first two strings from A+, and were rewarded with the bye and a good amount of rest. Here we see Chris Sacchetti throwing a ball prior to the semifinal match.
A+ then had to win their match Friday night against Musquodoboit Big Shots and then win again the following morning just to get the opportunity to face Academy Lanes. It was a hard fought battle, and A+ advanced into the quarterfinals on Saturday morning against the reigning champs, McLauhglin Truck and Trailer. Over the course of the match, A+ did a great job getting a mark here, an extra pin there, and as more and more boxes passed, A+ outlasted McLaughlin TnT and earned the right to face Academy in a rematch of round 11. This rematch had the feeling that it was going to be epic right from the get go.
The starting lineup for A+ featured five guys that were on the 2012 championship team, Nate LeBlanc, Chris McGrady, Gerry Dunn, Matt Harnett, and Mitch Seary. Academy Lanes started Jim Ayotte, Richie Myrick, Aaron Spiller, Chris Sacchetti, and Mark Ricci. Though they don’t have a championship yet, the Academy team features some proven American Champions – Ayotte, winning the Pro Series Playoffs in 2013 (defeating Sacchetti). Chris, a champion in his own right, is the defending doubles champion in the Pro Series with back to back titles starting the 2014-2015 season. Myrick and Spiller both have had numerous accolades in the WNECA as well as the Pro Series, and who can forget last year’s 2013 Men’s Candlepin Singles champ – Mark Ricci. This isn’t David vs Goliath or the Rebels vs the Empire – it’s something more along the line of Celtics- Lakers final circa the 1980s. These two teams were the class act of the right side of the tournament and they took names and numbers in every match they were in. Here’s a little insight into the first two trips of the match. Academy started on the right with A+ on the left.
Ayotte had been leadoff bowler for Academy for most of the tournament and the first string started no differently for him in the playoffs. After being open in the first he crushed the 8-pin in the face for a spare right out of the gate. He squared off against the “ghost-ball” throwing Nate LeBlanc who never makes a noise with his ball – you’d never even know a ball was thrown until you heard the explosion 60 feet away. He was open his first two.
The 2-hole match-up features the fireball throwing Richie Myrick, against the laser accurate, and many stepped approach of Chris McGrady. Second box of their bout, McGrady buries a hammer, and Myrick, unfazed, annihilates the four horsemen left. All the spectators saw some great technical bowling by both bowlers being able to hit the 1-2 pocket.
The middle of the lineup for both teams featured two extremely powerful bowlers in Aaron Spiller and Gerry Dunn. Aaron throws a similar ball to LeBlanc – very low, very accurate, and very deadly. Dunn on the other hand throws the ball with such force that the pins can do nothing but fall off the deck into the pit. Right out of the gate, Spiller nails the 10-pin in the face for a spare, while Gerry Dunn doinks (and by “doinks” I mean snaps the 3-pin and 8-pin in half for a half-Worcester). What does Gerry do? Promptly matches Spiller’s single pin spare with a spare of his own and as people know I hate the use of the word literally, but the eight pins standing literally went like one. And no disrespect to Gerry at all. We Americans use the term “doink” when we make a Worcester fill or knock out one when we hit the two or three pin. He’s far too good to “doink” anything.
The “clean up hitters” (I love baseball) had an Academy veteran in Chris Sacchetti (who probably tosses 1,000 strings a year at Academy) against the handsome Matt Harnett. Both bowlers had great weeks leading up to this match-up and both had ink ALL OVER their sheets every string. Chris is such a fan favorite here and everywhere that a dessert my wife, the “Den Mother”, makes has “Funfetti” cake mix in it. Harnett came right out in box one with a hammer, and not to be outdone, Sacchetti converted the 4-7 to keep pace with a mark in the first. “Matty Bum” as he is known on his team, nearly converted the “Caliri” (1-3-6-8-10 or 1-2-4-7-9) – in this case leaving the 8-pin. Chris nabbed the 4-pin in the chin to be the first bowler with two marks out of the gate.
The anchors in the match starting out were Mark Ricci and the “diminutive” Mitch Seary, standing a short 6’6″. Being from Boston, “Mahky” as he’s known – is a combination of every bowler out there – power, finesse, technical, aggressive – and yet knows when take something off the ball when it’s necessary. One would think that a gentle giant would fire the ball, but Mitch gets so low, and he’s so smooth, that the pins just tip left and right and his scores soar and he proves you don’t need to throw bullets. I love watching Mitch bowl during the June tournament. This could be the match that determines this semifinal match. Ricci clearly amped to be bowling in the semis in front of hundreds threw a bonecrusher right off the starting line, and with ultimate poise, Mitch threw a spare to keep pace.
Ten boxes in, A+ had the early lead 120 to 117 with Academy hanging three hits to A+’s one. The teams combined for ten marks their first trip which just speaks to the skill level of the bowlers. The second trip coming up was just as exciting as the first. Ayotte followed his spare with a nine drop and slapped the 4-pin right face to keep on keeping on. McGrady came right back with a strike, but not to be outdone Richie “MyRock” Myrick, following Ayotte, electrified the crowd by converting the 5-7 to cheers and screams of the raucous crowd. If bowling is dying, it certainly didn’t sound like it then.
Trading jabs like Rocky and Clubber Lang in Rocky III, Dunn, on lane 32 went spare, 9 fill spare, and Spiller keeping pace, going spare, 8 fill, spare. The ink just started to fill up the screen. More and more the crowd was getting into it, screaming, yelling, cheering, clapping, ultimately fueling the bowlers on every box. Second trip almost done and the marks were flowing like water. Creating some Canadian excitement Matt Harnett finished his trip in stunning fashion making the 3-6-7 for a spare. The spares, the strikes, the pinning – it was all there at the start of the string to the tune of Academy taking the lead 251 to 242, though A+ had three hits to Academy’s one. Another twenty boxes and another ten marks. The teams after forty boxes had combined for a stunning twenty marks – unreal.
The crowd has been witness to some amazing moments as well as some heart breaking ones as well. It’s a tight match that is keeping everyone on the edge of their seats. The shots of the string however belonged to Ayotte in his fifth and sixth. Jimbo found a way to make the 6-7-8-9 for a spare, filled it, and then in the following box made the 4-7-10 for a ten box!
As time wore on, A+ managed a few marks here and there with a couple of larger fills and jumped out the early 57 pin lead 649-592 after the first string. The teams were both firing on all cylinders managing 46 marks in 100 boxes!
With every box that passes the pressure in the room builds. You could cut the tension with a knife. Watching this event live is where it’s at when it comes candlepin bowling.
At one point Academy had fallen behind by over 100 pins, and then pin by pin, they started to climb back. They’d get a big fill here, extra mark there, pin a little bit. Here’s the last trip box by box on video for your enjoyment. I’m not going to give away the ending.
Clearly some of the best bowling I’ve ever seen. Congratulations to both A+ Accounting and Academy Lanes. Here’s the final score for those that are curious.
It’s time to start getting back into this now that things have calmed down. Speaking of calm – enter Steve Lach. Steve Lach tore up lanes 25 and 26 at Metro Bowl in Peabody on Friday opening with a 174(!), and then completing a great night by finishing 141 and 145 for an impressive total of 460! Steve’s 460 puts him in a tie for 1st with the legendary Jeff Surette!
That, right there – that’s an awfully full bowling alley.
It’s nice to see one of the premier summer leagues back to where it used to be. This speed league used to take up the entire house a few years back and sadly it almost folded last season.
Thanks to some hard work by Frank De Luca and Brian Fournier, the league has exploded! It’s the perfect setup: two person teams, five strings, five boxes at a time. The thing with this league is that Frank and Brian listened. They took the bowlers requests into account and they tried to work in the good things and leave out the questionable things and it turned into a major formula for success.
The most controversial topic that had to be addressed was the handicap. For years it was always 100% – and frankly this league was just too good for that to happen. In 2010, there were twenty bowlers – sixteen of which were over a 110 average. Realistically, it wasn’t going to work. It had to change. They put it to a vote, and the number that was agreeable to most, if not all, was 85%. It keeps it close but fair (if you were supposed to get 20 pins, now it’s 17). The league had such an infusion of teams that it even had to vote on bowling an extra weekend in July so that each team would face every other team once and still be able to have a position week at the end of August.
People came back to the league that were in it years past – Mark Ricci, Dave Mallahan, and Brandon Marks; and new people came in including Jon Boudreau, Maria Mazzarella, and Nick Norcross (there was even a Sammy Dagostino sighting as a sub)! The list goes on, and on and it’s clearly based on the good work of Frank and Brian.
So what happened on the first night you ask?
Yep – there were some scores thrown.
134, 155, 165, 127, 158, 164, 130, 133, 139!
Those were just in the first string alone! This league lit it up on Wednesday to the tune of 19 130’s, 8 140’s, 8 150’s, 3 160’s and even a lone 170 string! Of the 35 bowlers that threw in week 1 there were 11 600’s and one 700!
Yes, there was some great bowling. Yes, the pins were flying. Yes, people got breaks. Keep in mind, people still had to hit their shots. Malden is quite fast, but it’s what most bowlers call “honest fast”. If you hit the pocket, you get normal looking leaves and you still need to hit your two-pinners and triangles to score. The real benefit of Malden is when you’re slightly off the headpin. It’s very possible to get seven, eight, and even nine drops off the two or three pin, and that’s where your score really jumps because that’s either extra pins of fill, or it’s decent leave that gets you going to two or three marks in a row – unless you’re Mark Ricci and you just go 10 for 10 on the headpin – then this paragraph doesn’t apply (nice 712 by the way).
Speaking of Mark, he put it best when he thanked Frank and Brian (and me) – “Thank you for making this league amazing again. There’s an electricity in this building that’s been gone for years and it’s back. People are excited to bowl again. Thank you for not letting this league die.”
Week 1 featured some amazing bowling with Jon Bourdreau leading the way with a 175 single, and Mark Ricci with a 712 for five. Team 14 threw a high game of 315 and Team 13 (God you both need team names!) threw a high total of 1291. What’s even more intriguing is how close some of the strings and matches were. There were three strings that came down to a single pin, and five more that were five pins or less. Unbelievably there was a match that came down to two pins for total, and if that wasn’t enough how about the match between Nonsense and Doomsday Machine that came down to one pin in favor of Doomsday Machine!
There were battles in every match, on every lane. Expect more of the same this Wednesday 7:30 PM. Please God make it so we don’t have to bowl at the same time the Bruins are battling the Canadians in game 7. Just let them finish it out tonight…
Kyle Bryant put it best when he spoke to the crowd: “I can’t believe this, we’re having a freaking party in a candlepin bowling alley!” And what a party it ended up being.
During the spring of 2009, I attended a fundraiser for a friend of mine from high school. The two of us graduated from Winthrop High in 1996; but the real story starts further back when we were ten years old on the same Little League team. Richard “Richie” Currier was in the on deck circle trying to time his swing with the pitcher on the hill. As he took his swing, his bat pinwheeled out of his hands and SMASHED the windshield of my father’s brand new 1988 Chevy Caprice Classic. Our Little League team was notorious that season, I think we broke four windshields. Oh yeah, he met his wife on the team too – talk about Little League Sweethearts…
The charity event was created to raise awareness for Friedreich’s Ataxia. It is a debilitating disease that attacks the nervous system and causes gait and speech issues similar to that of muscular dystrophy. It turns out that Richie was diagnosed with FA while he was in college. After that initial fundraiser was over, I tried to think, how can I help and what can I do? That’s where the story really begins to take shape.
The fall of 2009 rolled around, and I had an idea for a bowl-a-thon. With the help of the Candlepin Pro Series, we designed a night to bowl with the pros. Several pros showed up (Mike MacIntosh, Craig Holbrook, Jeff Surette just to name a few), and our fundraiser was born. The overall turn out was better than we expected. Little did we know what this fundraiser was going to turn into after the initial event.
Fast forward to 2014. It’s the five year mark for the bowl-a-thon, and it’s going strong. And by strong, I mean jammed packed from the second we open the door until the manager has to throw us out at the end of the night. This night would be not be possible for the effort of the employees of Candlewood in North Reading.
Look at this place! When was the last time you saw a candlepin bowling alley this full other than The Worlds? Guests even had to wait for lanes to bowl. The FA Project has the perfect formula for an event – fun, food, raffles, and an amazing DJ. I had no idea the impact this event was going to have when it came to creating it among some friends in Winthrop, and the candlepin bowling community.
Of course the goal is to beat the disease – but that’s not what this event is about. It’s about what one Suffolk University student coined in an article – hope. Ethan Hartley a senior and has an insatiable appetite for a feel good story as well as my wife’s left overs. He was able to pay us a visit and cover the event and help us get the word out to others. You can read Ethan’s amazing article via this direct link here, or visit the main blog The Suffolk Voice. I’ve never been so proud to say I know someone, but damn Ethan, I’m PROUD of you.
Ethan met Richie and Kyle for the first time last Saturday evening. Let me tell you, until now he’s been cheated because he hasn’t known them for as long as I have. When you hear Richie and Kyle speak, you don’t hear words of sorrow, or words of anger, or even words of acceptance. You hear words of determination, spirit, and sheer will that can be summed up into one word I’m going to use – heart. To them, every day is a good day. Every day is another day to overcome something that may be mundane to us, but is a challenge to them. Kyle does a great job reminding us that we take the mundane for granted. Kyle has also taught me, and the rest of the FA Project, you can accomplish anything if the desire is there. So what does Kyle do to prove that? He up and rides his bike from San Diego, CA to Annapolis, MD. You think that’s impressive?It would be, except he made the trip with the rest of his team in eight days. EIGHT days. Let that sink in for a second. Kyle just went from being impressive to epic. I look forward to hanging out with him every single year. He’s a hero for the community of people afflicted with FA.
Being a part of something bigger is truly awesome. I know I can’t find a cure, but I can help. The FA Project uses the money that was raised (over $10,000 two years in a row – woo!) to help people afflicted with FA. It can be as simple as cab ride to a doctor’s appointment. It can also be as extensive as building a ramp for your home because you’re in a wheel chair. No matter what, the one thing we try to achieve is to let people know they aren’t alone. We’re standing there right behind them, and it’s great.
This event would not have been made possible without the help of our friends and family as well. If not for my wife Anna, who bakes more than the Pillsbury Dough Boy, The Keebler Elves, AND The Sunshine Baker man combined, a major part of event would be missing. To the right, you can see a cross-section of Anna’s most famous “slutty brownies” (we’re all adults here). Those are her signature dessert with a layer of chocolate chip cookie dough on the bottom, a layer of Oreos in the middle and brownie batter on top.
Moving from a boundless energy in the kitchen to boundless energy in life; Richie’s wife Maria is tireless. Watching her support Richie through all of this and during the event is like pure magic. It’s never ending. The personality she brings to the event along with her passion can’t be beat.
You can’t count out Evan, James, and Rami either. Their legwork in the background makes it so we have a real team and that we are always ready come April every year. We would all have a more difficult time without them.
Candlewood Bowling Alley, The Candlepin Pro Series, Kelly’s Roast Beef, DJ Scott Martelucci, Photo Fun Box, the Lane Sponsors… The list goes on and on and gets bigger and better every year. If you’ve been here before, we can’t wait to see you again next year. If you’ve never been, man you’ve gotta come out. Kyle, Richie, all of us; we truly appreciate it and you will too.
I hadn’t checked my email in a few days, but I should do it more often! I got an email from Tom Bishop recently telling me of his exploits shooting his new high single – 203!
It’s always nice to have a string that you start with a triple strike, but to then throw a second one, that’s just great. Let’s not discount the nine drop in the eighth box, looking at the sheet it could have been a four bagger.
It’s also great that he managed to hit his 200 game with the fill in the 10th. When you get that close, and need either a big fill in the 10th, or have to pin out for the 200, those can be the most difficult pins in the world to hit! Tom got it out of the way with the six fill, and the three pins were just icing on the cake!
Way to go Tom on your accomplishment. Keep throwing them, and we’ll keep posting them!
I’ve read about it, but I finally witnessed it. I saw a 700 game AND a 2000 series in the same night. It was sad that it was against my team, but such is life. Some captain I am, coming in the lowest of the ten bowlers. Take your eyes away from my name and just look at the scores.
Lucky Strike is at it again. It was awesome to watch as pin after pin after pin rocketed into the pit. The consistency and teamwork is just silly.
I tried to look into their eyes tonight to see the red light; because man; are they machines. It was like bowling against 5 T-1000’s! If any of them asked for John Connor, I was out there!
Watching the 700 game is awesome all by itself – though it is a bit more entertaining when we bowled well too. 630’s will win you a lot of strings on Friday night. Not tonight however.
But then, to watch them throw ANOTHER one (almost!) and be at 1,400 after two strings, I was really hoping for a 2,100 – I’ll be honest.
To watch them bowl as a team is hard to explain. So many marks. So much ink. Almost always managing to make a bad fill into another mark to keep the streak alive. Another thing to keep in mind is the teamwork, the knowledge of the game, the faith to listen, and the ability to do it.
Tough to visualize, but I am going to try anyway. Case in point, the shot of the night – and there were a STUPID amount but this shot in particular sticks out in my mind.
Barber throws his first ball and buries the 1-2 pocket leaving the 7-10. There was a piece wood of laying near the 7 pin essentially making an “L”. To the right of that piece of wood, two vertical pieces of wood nearly touching, and nearly making a “V” toward the pit. Just ahead of the right stick, was a flat piece of wood acting as a road block. Baker leans in and calmly explains – and I’m trying to do the best I can to get it correct – hit the left piece of the “V”. By throwing your ball to just left of the headpin, and hitting the left part of the “V the ball will hit the flat wood and take the 7-pin, and the right pin will spin around and come toward the lane and take the 10-pin. So what does Barber do? He makes it – and he makes it clean. And I’m saying no questions asked he makes it. Just to the left of the head pin, hits the left “V” the ball hits the 7-pin and the right portion of the “V” takes the 10-pin. Maybe they have “Easy Buttons” in their bags?
Congrats to those guys at Lucky Strike. Another 2,000 and another post. Two weeks left to do it again.
Spare. Strike! Spare. Strike! Spare. Five boxes – Eight balls thrown. Now sit. And wait. That word – wait. Oh how we hate it.
That’s a great way to start out ANY string. Jeff Walsh (affectionately known as Carrot in the Candlepin bowling world) accomplished that this past Tuesday in the speed league at Academy; opening up with five marks sitting on a spare in the 5th.
Now what comes with the sitting? That eerie feeling of having to wait while your teammates bowl their five boxes. Can I keep it going? Why can’t I just finish the string? You swear the machine takes longer to reset for your teammates. Minutes seem like hours. We all love starting out that way just as much as the next guy, but the AGONY of waiting is awful sometimes. Time doesn’t go any faster when you’re waiting to close out an awesome start.
So I asked Jeff what was going through his mind after the 5th. “I wasn’t thinking much, I’ve screwed up strings with those type of halves too many times to get too excited. After the strike in the 8th is when I started getting nervous.”
Well Jeff did what many of us have trouble doing – kept it going after sitting down. And he did it like clockwork. Strike! 100 half! Spare. Strike! Sitting pretty at 150 before filling the strike in the 8th. Jeff finished up strong in the last two managing back to back spares with seven fills for a 194 total! Love those ten mark games. Congrats Carrot on the new high single! Jeff absolutely destroyed his old total of 167.
Editor’s Note: Feel free to make fun of my Candlewood teammate Justin Scali for the photo. He sent it along, and just apologized to the team for the glare, instead of sending along another with the flash off. He must have been trying to hide all times he got hung in the second half of that string!
Much like Candlepin bowling, the Boston marathon is a historic and traditional event. Everyone here at Everything Candlepin pass along our thoughts and prayers to all the victims and families affected by this tragedy.
Keep calm, and carry on.
It’s been a while, but here is week 33. Only six weeks left.
As I, (or we) promised more content, content, content!
This image comes from the second King Of The Palace from New Palace lanes in Fitchburg. I think anyone would be happy opening with a 153 – and then to follow it with a 134 – outstanding. Brian Pilesky was off to an amazing start!
Those two scores were nice enough to witness, but Brian wasn’t done on this day. Opening his third string with four spares and sitting with a hammer is great in itself. But then, follow that up in the second half that included a DOUBLE is just phenomenal. Brian finished with a 180 (that I believe to his credit is now his high single) and a superb total of 467. That’s a great day by anyone’s standards.
Brian qualified first for ladder with his accomplishment. I won’t give away how the ladder went, but it was fun to hear about and watch during qualifying.
Way to go Brian. Hopefully you throw more scores like that!
Hello everyone. I just want thank you for helping make this site what it is today. Its only been active for eight months, and the traffic is beyond what I ever thought it would be. The site has had nearly 9,000 unique users, almost 27,000 visits, and close to 660,000 hits!
I am overwhelmed by your constant support. I know that the biggest group of users are from the United States and Canada, but I never imagined the “global” impact the site would have with users coming to visit from all corners of the world including Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Romania, and even 1 visitor from Tanzania! I hope those folks from outside the “inner” circle of the bowling world keep coming back.
I’ve received A TON of feedback regarding the site and the forum, and I try to address all of those concerns to the best of my ability, and yeah, I’m a computer geek, and I know some code, but not enough. You asked to be able to enter your first and last name when registering, done. I have fixed the BIGGEST issue with the registration is that you can now enter your OWN password instead of having that random one created for you. Having the password created for you was by far the most annoying thing. Fixing the video size took some time, but that was just an issue with the theme of the blog, and now you can watch URBtv as much as you’d like without having to re-size the window.
I will update the site as much as possible, and now I have a handful of tools that will allow me to provide you more content on a much more rapid basis. It got to the point where the site wasn’t updating nearly enough, and I hope to alleviate that with content, content, content. This site is about candlepin bowling, and the people that live, breath, and eat our favorite game. This site is for everyone. I may own the site and pay the bills, but this is supposed to be the heartbeat of bowling, and the site has gotten away from that. The constant traffic is what motivates me to press on. If you want me to post information about your league send along an email. Need to recruit bowlers? Just have me make an announcement here that I can post for you. Use the forum to your heart’s content. It’s going to be there forever, and you can post links, videos, and pictures without a problem. If the forum needs a new section tell me. If you have an idea for the site, run it by me. I am open to any and all ideas. This site for my audience, and those that love candlepin bowling as much as I do.
Let’s start discussing how to save this game! I always hate to agree with pops, but “heavy hands make light work”. I can’t do alone, no one can. The more information I provide, if I can get one person hooked, and that leads to two, and then four, we are on to something.
Let’s go people, post away! Make requests! Talk about your leagues. Want me to add something, tell me!
Thanks to our founding fathers, Rich and I were able to take a trip down to Paramount Industries on President’s day for a discussion with Mr. Bob Parrella. Many of you are familiar with EPCO, which is the foremost manufacturer of Candlepin bowling balls today. Located in Medway, MA., EPCO manufactures a line of products that is distributed by their sister company, Paramount Industries, Inc.
Bob Parrella, a Director of the International Candlepin Bowling Association (ICBA), has spent a lifetime in the industry of Candlepin Bowling and has seen historical change occur over the years. Mr. Parrella was generous enough to take the time to talk to us about his experience. Historically, there were up to seven companies simultaneously producing Candlepin Bowling balls. Today, EPCO remains as the only manufacturer. EPCO uses a “top secret” formula and process for making their bowling balls. Perhaps this is why their product has prevailed over less expensive and less reliable methods of production. Most EPCO bowling balls are a solid, one-piece construction with each ball being perfectly weighted and balanced.
You may ask yourself – “So how can different balls be different weights?” The answer to this is hidden in the density of the formula that is used to manufacture the bowling balls. In the past (and currently with some bowling balls [EPCO Starline]), a solid core was used to weight the bowling balls for different bowlers. The issue with this is that the core would rarely be perfectly centered to allow the ball to properly roll. We all know how frustrating it is when closely missing a single pin for a spare, so we want our bowling balls to roll as smoothly and straightly as possible.
With compressed bowling balls, several layers of rubber were sandwiched together and compressed with tons of hydraulic pressure. This would cause the layers to bond due to the intense heat caused by the pressure applied. This type of bond allowed for bowling balls of limited colors, and the bond of the rubber was not strong enough to withstand the repeated crashing into pins, pinsetters – and the inevitable gutters. Thus, this manufacturing process proved to be unsuccessful for Candlepin Bowling balls.
With EPCO prevailing, new technologies were introduced to allow for many different colors to be applied to a single bowling ball while remaining one-piece. With this new process, bowlers were now able to purchase reliable, custom bowling balls in a color (or colors) of their liking.
So how can you choose a bowling ball for yourself?
EPCO’s products are made from a variety of chemical formulations including rubber, urethane, resin, and other chemicals. When considering what to purchase yourself, it’s important to consider the types of bowling lanes your league house(s) have. Traditionally, Candlepin bowling is played on rock hard maple, which offers a softer and more absorbent reaction to your bowling ball. Currently, many bowling centers are converting to the harder, more durable synthetic approaches that are installed as sheets. Bob was able to explain to us that bowling balls are rated with a Durometer or “D” rating. A Durometer reading indicates the surface hardness of a material that is being produced and can be useful in understanding which bowling balls are more appropriate for the surface you’re bowling on.
According to Mr. Parrella, a harder bowling ball will be more appropriate for a harder surface. For example, a Paramount Solid bowling ball, which has a D-Rating of 80-85 would react better to a lane with a synthetic surface. Typically, synthetic lanes would be more advantageous to those who roll a straighter ball because there is less “grab” on a hard synthetic surface. For an all-wood lane, a product like the EPCO Ram Pro Rubber bowling ball would offer softer reaction and would “grab” the lane for better accuracy. This particular bowling ball has a D-Rating of 72 (softer). Additionally, the Rams are made of a rubber composition, which may be better for bowlers who tend to curve or “hook” the ball toward their target. Of course, there are several different weights and many different colors offered when buying Candlepin bowling balls, so ask your friends if you can try their bowling balls before making a purchase!
Paramount Industries’ retail store can be visited at 42 Milford St in Medway, MA. For any questions or additional input, please email me at fdeluca(at)everythingcandlepin.com. I’d love to hear your experiences with different bowling balls over the years.
Cue up The Raconteurs “Steady As She Goes”. Chris Harris and Joey Hutchinson proved that on Sunday, Februrary 17th at the Doubles Knockout at Metro Bowl. As the saying goes, it doesn’t matter where you finish, just get in. Chris and Joey did very well on this day. Chris opened up on the day with a 616 total, and Joey chimed in with a 630 after their five string qualifying round.
Worrying about “just getting in”, their 1246 total got them into the top 24, sitting in 20th place overall. Once they made the knockout round, that’s where they made their noise. There first round match you ask? Jeff Surette and Dave Barber. A match that came down to the wire, Jeff and Dave threw 138 and 125 respectively, for a 263 total. Edging them by 8 pins, Joey’s 142 and Chris’ 129 were enough, and the 271 allowed them to move onto round 2.
Round 2 featured another tall task as they faced Maria Mazzarella and Brandon Marks. “Brando” started out great on this day – 178 and 157, 335 for two! He finished with 704 on the day so this match wasn’t going to be any easier than their first round match. Another gut wrenching battle that came down to the last few boxes before being decided. Joey duplicated his first round score with another 142, and Chris finished with a nice 125 string. Their total of 267 was enough to topple Maria and Brandon by 12 pins! Brandon threw an awesome 150 string, but it ended up not being enough and Joey and Chris moved onward and upward.
Joey and Chris charged into the quarter-finals facing another top qualifier in Jim Miner and Brian Mayer. Brian tore it up earlier in the day with a 687 and Jim chipped in greatly finishing with 626. Their 1313 placed them as the five seed overall. Round three is where Joey and Chris caught fire – as if a 271 and 267 weren’t fiery enough. Joey threw another crusher score with 137; not to be outdone, Chris tossed a 146 string. Their total ended up being more than enough as Jim and Brian weren’t able to break up the pins, or carry the extra one (such is life on lane 21-22 at Metro), and they were defeated by 69 and lost 283-211. After three knockout rounds Joey was sitting at 421 (140.3 avg.) and he was followed closely by his partner at an even 400 (130.3 avg.).
The semi-finals featured yet another tough match-up as they faced Rich Cocchi and Ed Woodside. Rich and Ed were rocking and rolling all day as they were taking names and numbers in the qualifying round as well as the knockout. Not to be denied, Joey and Chris were able to take advantage of their breaks and used them incredibly effectively in order to do what it took to make it to the finals. It was clear that throughout the knockout it appeared that Joey and Chris were the team to beat.
It was the battle of David versus Goliath as the young upstarts in Joey and Chris were facing two legends in Dave “Cookie” Richards and Peter Flynn who have won more awards and more tournaments that most people can even remember! It was a hard fought match from beginning to end, with Joey and Chris prevailing on this day! Good job to all the opponents that faced Joey and Chris, and good job Joey and Chris with your first Pro Series wins!
Hello everyone. We were snowed out last week. This update is for two weeks and includes the double match. This update also includes the new schedule moving forward since the snow. The new stats live here.
Well, it was a great day for a tournament – a little snow, and an awesome football game that interrupts even better commercials. I know that Nick Zuffelato is thankful, that’s for sure. Metro bowl in Peabody had their annual Superbowl tournament. Nick started out a with a great half. It’s always nice sitting down with 75 and a ball. Little did he know what was going to follow for a second half…
A series of nine fills and spares he was sitting 132 in the eighth with a fill ball. A triple in the ninth pushed him to 172, meaning he was at 192 with one ball remaining in the 10th frame.
It was a great day for Nick, as he didn’t even realize he was on pace for the 200 game. He said to me “[I] actually had no idea I was pace for 200. I missed the head pin, left up the 1,3,6 and a piece of wood came runnin along and took it out. I knew I hit it when everoyne started to cheer when it fell haha”
Good for you man. You’ve done what we all hope to do one time, throw that elusive 200 game. Good job, and good luck on a 201!