BY BETTE ADDINGTON Contributing bowling columnist
Bakersfield's Dan Long is celebrating his first PBA regional title -- the PBA Sands Regency West/Northwest Winter Classic. Long emerged from a field of 57 bowlers and became the sixth seed after bowling his seven games of qualifying.
The event was held over the weekend at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno. Bowlers bowled on the USBC White pattern.
Long held off 10-time world champion and No. 4-seed Tetsuya Kobayashi of Japan for the title (257-190).
Long averaged 240 for qualifying and averaged 250 in match play.
A new resident to Bakersfield, Long moved here in the summer from northern California. He has bowled for 35 years. Long, a lefty, was the only one to win all his matches in match play. He won $2,000 for this first title, and 25,000 PBA points.
Medina III, Mayo and Long place in Concord scratch tournament
Carlie Medina III, Robert Mayo and Dan Long competed Jan. 5 in the Northern California Match Games XXVIII at Diablo Valley Bowl in Concord. This event featured a field limited to 64 entrants and paid a first place prize of $1,550.
Medina placed 7th and won $350; Mayo placed 11th ($180) and Long 14th ($150).
Bakersfield Scratch Trio League brings out the best
This year's league seems to have non-stop excitement each week with the excellent showcase of bowling happening. If you are interested in watching some of Bakersfield's top bowlers, drop by AMF Southwest Lanes anytime between 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Monday nights for the next month. This traveling scratch league just moved back over the AMF Southwest from Regency and has had some eventful games.
The first week back on Dec.30, the night ended with two lefties, Mike Mayo on lanes 1-2 and Charles Breeding on lanes 3-4, stringing strikes for their third game. Unfortunately, Breeding left a 10-pin in the tenth frame and settled for a 279 game. Mayo stayed on target and rolled a nice 300 game.
Last week proved even more suspenseful. The new oil machine that AMF Southwest Lanes got is putting out a consistent shot and you knew it was going to be a good night when we had three bowlers stringing strikes for game one Robert Mayo, Joe Ramirez and Carlie Medina III. None of them were bowling against each other. Mayo dropped off after getting the front eight, and Medina the front nine but Ramirez got the front 10. If that was exciting enough, the attention quickly switched over to Medina's pair of lanes, where he was up against Andrew Svoren and both were having a strike fest. Medina started by beating Svoren the first game 267-247. But game two was a whole other story with both of them stringing strikes from the first frame. Medina's run stopped at the ninth frame when he left a 10 pin. Svoren kept striking but got a nine count in the 10th, which meant they tied with 269 games. Now everyone was watching as they bowled their third game. It got so intense that everyone in the league stopped to watch the two bowl their ninth and 10th frames as they were both striking like crazy. League president Diz Francisco called it: "The young gun versus the king!" Svoren won this third game 290-279. They were both so focused that the excitement really climaxed when it was realized that Svoren bowled his first 800 series (806) against Medina's 815.
Medina, being the veteran he is, congratulated and gave Svoren some words of wisdom, on a night he will not soon forget.
Speedy recovery wishes
Speedy recovery wishes to Zack Newman, who fractured his ankle after a fall this past week and is now in a cast. Four to six weeks can't come soon enough.
Weekly super scores
Congratulations and more congratulations to Andrew Svoren fresh off his first sanctioned 300 game Dec. 20 at Regency, the honors just keep coming! On Monday, January 6, bowling in the Bakersfield Scratch Trio league at AMF Southwest Lanes, Svoren bowled his first ever sanctioned 800 series, an 806 with games of 247-269-290. Then, on Jan. 7, Svoren fired his second sanctioned 300 game in the Aquaducks league at AMF Southwest Lanes. On Sunday, competing in the weekly Coffee Club tournament at Regency, Svoren rolled another 300 and won for the second week in a row. You can't get much hotter.
-- Mike Mayo, steady as he goes, rolled his third career perfecto Dec. 30 in the Bakersfield Scratch Trio league at AMF Southwest Lanes.
Bowling tech: Cut the smack talk
Ever wonder why some people just find it to be amusing or fun or some kind of weird introverted excuse for talking smack about other fellow bowlers? Fear not, it happens in all sports and life in general. It's some part of weird human nature. Stemming from inferiority, lack of confidence, trust or who knows what other crazy reasons.
One thing for sure, karma is tough and when it comes back around and puts the boot in their rear it's usually a good one! Next time you hear one of your teammates or fellow bowlers talking smack about another bowler, just look them in the eyes and tell him, "If you're going to talk smack, go say it to their face or not at all!" You can't be a good ambassador to bowling if you are an ambusher! Let's go have some good, competitive fun!
An example of a good sport is Dan Long, Bakersfield's newest PBA Regional title holder. He is probably one of the nicest and most competitive bowlers I've seen in many years.
-- MIKE HEFLEY
Jan. 18: GEUSBC Youth League Second Half Starts, 10 a.m., Regency Bowling Center. New youth league bowlers can join league. 15 weeks. For further information, contact Regency Lanes at (661) 325-6428.
Jan. 19: MAMBO Mixed Five's Tournament, Pacific Ave. Bowl, Stockton. For further information, contact Pete or Pat at (916) 682-8362 or go to www.mambo.org.