Here is my report of the PBA regional tournament held at Spring Hill, FL. Spring Hill is about 50 miles north of Tampa which is about 70 miles from where I live in Ocala. Spring Hill Lanes is beautiful bowling center which has been hosting tournaments for about 15 years.

The lane oil pattern was similar to the tough pattern which was used last week. With not much help from the oil pattern the scores were kept low. If you missed right the ball went right, likewise if you missed left the ball went left. The pattern played more inside and the outside part of the lane was very tight.

I was on 'A' squad out of 2 squads. I decided to play fairly direct up around 12-13 with a particle ball (#0201).
I knew that the scores were going to be low and I was trying to make great shots. I made several bad shots in the first game, but a double and a turkey after a missed 3-10 gave me a 216. The 2nd game I had a double and finished with a 4 bagger in the 9th and 10th after missing a 6-7-10 in the middle of the game for a 212. I bowled one of the best games I have bowled in quite a while as I started with 6 strikes in a row before leaving a solid 10. I came back with a turkey and then a solid 8 for a 268. In the next game I chopped the 2-4-5 and missed the 4-6-7 but I had a 4 bagger and a turkey in the 10th for a 212. In the 5th game I doubled and had a turkey with a missed 6-7 split for another nice game of 214. Unfortunately I was only able to get 2 strikes in game 6 with another chopped 2-4-5 for a 182. Game 7 was more of the same as I had 3 strikes but managed a double and a 6-7-10 for a 192. In the 8th game I had a 4 bagger and chopped the 3-6 in the 10th for a 211. I ended up being 2nd on 'A' squad with +107 and 5th all together. It ended up taking +21 to make the top 16 with Steve Hoskins leading the qualifying from 'B' squad.

7/ X81 X X9/ X X X9/X 216
9/9/ X X729/9/9/ XXXX 212
X X X X X X9/ X XX9/ 268
X72 X X X X729/9/XXX 212
X9/ X X81 X X X9/9/X 214
72 X9/9/9/9/8/9/9/X9/ 182
8/ X8/9/9/9/729/ XX9/ 192
8/9/ X X X X8/9/8/81 211

I had 47 strikes out of 90 shots. I had 1 strike missing the pocket. I missed the pocket 23 times.
My strike % on pocket shots was 46 out of 67 pocket shots or 69%.
I had 8 opens. 5 were splits (3-10, 6-7-10, 4-6-7, 6-7, 6-7-10), 3 chopped spares (two 2-4-5's and a 3-6).
I felt that I bowled very well with the exception to the chopped spares.

In match play I used the same ball (#0201) playing a very similar line. I started against newcomer Deron Berwager. He bowled a very good game and beat me 214-212. In the 2nd game I bowled Ryan Smith. He really struggled at the start of the game but finished strong leaving two solid 8's around a turkey to come up short against me 203-192. Game 3 was against James Campbell. James really struggled at the finish of the game and I won easily 225-137. The 4th game was against Mark Booke. Mark also struggled and I won 203-160. I beat Mark Scroggins in the 5th game 222-184 when Mark struggled. I bowled Dave Covington in game 6 and he bowled a great game with basically no breaks and I won 198-195. I struggled the next game against Jason Hurd and he beat me 204-182. I threw the ball much better the 8th game against Eric Ramos. Eric had the chance to beat me but a miscue in the 10th frame gave me a fortunate win of 205-204. I was in 2nd place after the morning block behind Dennis Rakauskas.

I bowled Dennis in the 9th game and I decided to play a line closer to where Dennis was playing which was closer to the 4th arrow. Dennis & bowled similar games except I managed to get a couple of extra strikes and won 223-203. My 10th game was not a very good game, but I was fortunate to win against Tom Daugherty 194-167 as he struggled more than I did. Game 11 was against Sam Zurich. We both started out strong, but Sam started struggling and I finished with a nice 228 game to win over Sam's 189. Game 12 was against Steve Hoskins and I had a good finish after a poor start to win 213-177. Game 13 was against Pete Dohan. We both bowled good games while I was able to string the stikes and he had 2 splits which resulted in opens. I won 236-201. I was fortunate again the next game against Keith Sharp as I had a 5 bagger at the end of the game to win 220-217. Game 15 was against Chris Hayden who was trying to make the top 5 while I was trying to lead the tournament. I started with a couple of bad shots which included a cross over strike which led to a 4 bagger and I finished with a 6 bagger surrounding a solid 10 to get a 269-189 win. I had a very nice lead over Dennis Rakauskas at this time and bowled him in the position round. I struggled even though I just bowled on the pair the game before and Dennis beat me 201-168.

Jason Hurd bowled a 237 in his match against Steve Hoskins to go around Dennis. Eric Ramos beat Chris Hayden and ended up qualifying 4th while Steve ended up being 5th. Eric beat Steve in the first step ladder match 211-131. Dennis won the game against Eric 222-150 and Jason 204-186. As usual the lanes started to break down (the lane conditioner) and I went from playing just right of the 5th arrow in the last games of match play to trying to play around the 6th arrow on the right lane. Unfortunately for me I wasn't left enough and the ball return was getting in my way. To get more left I needed to move up and around the ball return. However I was trying to do this during the match. Another side effect of moving up on the approach is that I throw the ball slower. I never really got the ball right enough during the match, but I had a couple of tripped 4's for strikes in the 1st and 5th frame. I made the 6-7 split in the 3rd frame in between two doubles. Dennis started out with a 5-7 pocket split which he missed. He had a turkey starting in the 5th frame and left a pocket 4-5 which he missed in the 8th frame he followed that with another nice strike in the 9th frame. I missed the head pin in the 6th frame but made the 1-2-8. I left a 4 pin in the 7th frame and followed it by a 2-5 in the 8th which I made. In the 9th frame I was trying to get in front of the ball return and play around 30; again I wasn't left enough and went high leaving the 4-7-10. I missed that but struck out in the 10th frame for a 208. Dennis needed 2 strikes to beat me. Fortunately for me he went high and left the 4-7.

DW 639/ X9/ X X X X9/9/7 214
WR 72 X X X72 X X9/ XX9/ 212

RS 8/9/81618/ X9/ X XX9/ 192
WR 63 X X9/ X X7/ X8/9/9 203

WR 63 X X X X9/9/ X8/XX9 225
JC 9/9/9/9/9/7181729-63 137

MB X9/81729/9/ X9/819/8 160
WR 7/ X X7/8/9/ X9/ X9/9 203

WR X X X9/ X X9/ X62XX8 222
MS 8/ X X8/ X729/ X9FX8/ 184

DC X9-9/ X9/ X X8/9/X9/ 195
WR X X72 X X9/9/7/8/X9/ 198

WR 9/9/ X9-9/9/ X8/ X8/6 182
JH 81 X9/9/ X X X9/7/X7/ 204

ER 6/ X X X8/6/7/ X X71 204
WR X9/ X8/9/ X8/ X X6/X 205

DR X X X8/729/ X9/9/X9/ 203
WR 9/ X X81 X X X8/ XX9/ 223

WR 538/ X728/ X X9/ XX9/ 194
TD X8- X9/8/ X7/8- X7/7 167

SZ X X X72 X727/9/9/8/X 189
WR X X X9/ X9/ X8/ XX9/ 228

WR 7/9/ X7/63 X X X X9/X 213
SH 818/9/ X9/9/ X X638/6 177

WR X8/ X X7/ X8/ X XXX9 236
PD X8-9/ X71 X X X9/XXX 201

KS X8/ X X8/ X9/ X X9/X 217
WR 7/9/9/8/63 X X X XX9/ 220

WR 6/ X X X X9/ X X XXXX 269
CH 71638-7/7/ X X7/ XXXX 189

WR 8/ X81 X9/71638/9/XX7 168
DR 7/ X9/9/9/ X X X7/8- 201

Step -ladder match:
DR 81 X9/9/ X X X81 X8/X 194
WR X X8/ X X7/9/8/72XXX 208


In match play I had 102 strikes out of 193 shots with 5 missed pocket strikes and 65 missed pocket shots.
My strike percentage was 97 out of 128 or 76%.
I had 16 opens. 10 were splits (4-6-7, 2-4-8-10, 2-4-8-10, 4-7-10, 2-10, 4-6-7-9-10, 6-7-10, 4-9, 4-6-7, 6-7-10) and the other 6 were missed spares (1-2-7, 1-2-8-10, 7, 1-2-4-10, 1-2-7-8, 2-4-5-8). I picked up the ever common 3-6-8 (where did the ball go?), 6-7, 3-10, 1-10, and another 6-7.

My opponents had 79 strikes out of 186 shots with 8 non pocket strikes and 79 missed pocket shots.
Their strike percentage was 71 out of 107 or 66%.
They had 31 opens. 19 splits (6-7, 2-4-10, 3-6-7-10, 2-8-10, 4-6, 4-6-10, 4-6, 6-7-10, 2-10, 4-6-7, 3-10, 4-6-7-10, 6-7, 4-7-10, 2-7-8 L, 6-8 L, 5-7, 5-7, 4-5) and 12 spares (1-3-9-10, 1-2-4-10, 2-5, 1-2-4, 4, 2-5, 7, 4, 2-4-5, 2-8, 1-2-10, 1-3-6-8). They picked up 2 splits, both 3-10's).

I would like to thank George and Carlos and their great staff for hosting us at their beautiful bowling center (www.SpringHillLanes.com). The pros would like to thank the fans who came out and cheered us on and bowled with us in the Pro-Am. Also we would like to thank Hernando Mitsubishi and Hooters for helping sponsor the tournament this weekend.

I had some good breaks this weekend to help me win another regional title. I did feel like I bowled pretty well during the weekend and hopefully I can carry this over to the World Horseshoe tournament this next week up in Canada. If you are interested in following all of the results (there are 825 entries) which starts on July 29 and finishes on August 10 go to www.horseshoepitching.com. I won't be bowling in the next 2 scheduled PBA southern Regionals which are being held in Melbourne, FL and Orlando, FL due to the world horseshoe tournament. My next scheduled bowling tournament is in Cary, NC on August 16-18.


Walter Ray