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.