From the FFBC
Five local bowlers had strong showings over the weekend at Plaza Lanes here to book their tickets to the provincial championships coming up in April in Thunder Bay.
Competing in the 20-game Open zone roll-offs held Saturday and Sunday (10 games each day), Jeff Watts topped the 19 male entrants with a 5,156 total (257.8 average) to make the men’s team that will represent Sunset Country at the provincial round.
Watts also had the highlight of the tournament when he rolled a whopping 423–his personal best high game ever–on Sunday afternoon.
He opened the game with a spare, then reeled off 10-straight strikes before punching the right three-pin with his final ball.
Jordan Sokoliuk, meanwhile, had a 4,557 total (227.85 average) to finish in seventh place among the men and earn a spot on the mixed team that will represent Sunset Country at provincials.
With the pressure on, Sokoliuk had a strong finish–rolling scores of 234, 223, and 306 over his final three games–to nail down a provincial berth.
In the 12-bowler ladies’ division, Toni Benning and Marla Fedeniuk both qualified for the Sunset Country ladies’ squad by finishing in second and sixth place, respectively.
Benning wound up with a 4,312 total (215.6 average) while Fedeniuk totalled 3,895 (194 average).
Actually, Fedeniuk ended up tied for sixth with Michelle Riley of Balmertown after the 20 games but then handily won the one-game roll-off to determine the final member of the ladies’ team.
As well, Kathy Bois finished eighth overall with a 3,788 total (189.4 average) to earn a spot on the Sunset Country mixed team along with Sokoliuk that will compete at provincials.
Dallas Gervais and Rich Walton were the two other Fort Frances bowlers who competed in the zone roll-offs.
Gervais finished with a 4,374 total (218.7 average) to miss out on a provincial berth by a mere 27 pins.
For his part, Walton totalled 3.661 (183.05 average) to wind up 16th overall.
Joining Watts on the Sunset Country men’s team are Dryden bowlers Chris Gadd (4,932), Calvin Murray (4,707), Andrew Misner (4,627), Scott Miner (4,593), and Robert Keeper (4,564).
Their coach will be Tim Gadd of Dryden.
Watts, Gadd, and Murray also will represent Sunset Country in the men’s singles competition that is held in conjunction with the provincial tournament, which is slated for April 8-11 at Superior Bowladrome in Thunder Bay.
Joining Benning and Fedeniuk on the Sunset Country ladies’ team are Jackie Miner of Dryden, who topped the women’s division, with a 4,497 total, Jessica Scott of Kenora (4,158), Alexis Knudsen of Balmertown (4.075), and Kailee Ernewein of Dryden (3,950).
Their coach will be Terry DeLaronde of Dryden.
As well, Miner, Scott, and Knudsen will represent Sunset Country in the ladies’ singles competition (Benning had qualified but chose to drop out, which moved Knudsen up to take her place).
And joining Sokoliuk, Bois, and Riley on the Sunset Country mixed team are Dryden bowlers Darryl Rollins (4,434), Justin Galloway (4,401), who eked out 10th-place finisher Roger Peterson by just one pin, and Kayla Gadd (3,300).
Their coach will be Norm Sanders of Dryden.
Jenn Rollins of Dryden will serve as the contingent manager.
“It was pretty impressive seeing such great games rolled here over the two-day tournament,” said Mike Behan, who serves as president of both the local club and Sunset Country.
“Our zone once again is sending a strong contingent to the provincial roll-offs and I wish best of luck to all three of our teams when they compete in Thunder Bay.”
Behan also thanked Jesse Carmody and Cody Brown of Plaza Lanes for their hospitality and work to ensure everything ran smoothly.
He also thanked all the club volunteers who helped out with various aspects of the tournament, especially Shirley Jensson, who spent all day both Saturday and Sunday manning the computer to ensure all the results were tabulated accurately after each game.
“As all the clubs in our zone well know, you can’t run a tournament of this magnitude without great volunteers,” Behan stressed.
“Fortunately, we’re blessed with plenty of those here in Fort Frances.”