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2018 USBC Women’s Championships comes to a close in Reno

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The 99th edition of United States Bowling Congress Women’s Championships concluded in dramatic fashion Sunday as new leaders emerged in Diamond Singles, Diamond All-Events and Topaz All-Events during the final day of competition.

The 2018 event, which kicked off April 19 and lasted for 74 days, made its record 11th trip to Reno and eighth appearance at the National Bowling Stadium, welcoming 4,334 four-player teams and more than 17,000 bowlers to the 78-lane venue.

Bowlers competed in four average-based divisions for team competition and six divisions for doubles, singles and all-events.

All standings are unofficial and pending final verification.

AJ Schock (featured photo) of Battle Ground, Washington, rolled the highest set of her career on the way to the lead in Diamond Singles (787) and Diamond All-Events (2,132), while Chelsea Couto of Kerman, California, used the momentum of a strong performance during her team event Saturday to capture the top spot in Topaz All-Events with 1,385.

Joely O’Grady (right) of Rahway, New Jersey, previously held the lead in Diamond Singles with 754, and Team USA’s Julia Bond (left) of Aurora, Illinois, was the leader in Diamond All-Events with 2,128. Julie Carter of Linthicum, Maryland, previously topped the Topaz All-Events standings with 1,357.

Schock, a 21-year-old right-hander making her USBC Women’s Championships debut, rolled games of 276, 233 and 278, and her set Sunday morning is the third-highest singles series in tournament history. She added sets of 674 in team and 671 in doubles to edge Bond for the all-events lead.

Schock started her final game of singles with back-to-back spares, before rattling off nine consecutive strikes. Her strike in the ninth frame wrapped up the singles lead, and she filled 29 pins in the 10th frame to secure the top spot in all-events.

Schock admitted to looking at the leaderboard prior to her debut, but she didn’t believe it added any pressure to the moment.

“I knew what the numbers were, but it wasn’t in my head,” Schock said. “I just wanted to focus on taking it one shot and one game at a time. If I made my way to the top, great. But if I didn’t, it would be a good experience.”

After opening doubles Sunday with a 255 game, Schock followed it with 180, noting her spare shooting wasn’t at its best.

“I wasn’t comfortable in my second game of doubles,” Schock said. “I was missing spares, so I knew that was the first thing I had to change. But, after that, I calmed down, stayed comfortable and put the ball where it needed to be.”

She also had to make some adjustments as the lane condition began to transition for her in singles, but she quickly found the right move.

“At the end of the second game and start of the third game, my angle to the pocket wasn’t the greatest,” Schock said. “I was either going high or leaving flat 10s. So, I opened up my shoulders a little and gave the ball a little more room to recover.”

Schock had a very successful career on the lanes while in high school, helping Battle Ground High School win four consecutive Washington Interscholastic Activities Association Class 4A state titles. Her performance Sunday has her looking forward to the next step of her career, competing on the Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour.

“The PWBA Tour has been a goal of mine since it restarted,” Schock said. “Today definitely gave me a boost to give it a try.”

Couto (right), a 27-year-old right-hander, started her fourth Women’s Championships appearance with a 537 series in team and backed it up with 425 in singles and 423 in doubles to get to the lead.

Couto has been on a run as of late, which started with a strong showing at her state tournament.

“I bowled the California State tournament a few weeks ago,” Couto said. “My mom and I finished in first in doubles, and I came in third in all-events.”

Couto knew she was bowling well at the NBS, but she was surprised to find out her overall effort was enough to take the lead.

“Last night I bowled really well, but I never thought it would result in anything,” Couto said. “I’m in shock, and it feels so great to take over the lead on the very last squad.”

Joining Schock at the top of the Diamond Division leaderboard is USBC Hall of Famers Robin Romeo of Newhall, California, and Jeanne Naccarato of Tacoma, Washington (left, l-r), who used a huge final game May 15 to get to the lead in Diamond Doubles with 1,405.

Romeo started her set with games of 194 and 248 and finished with 278 for a 720 series, and Naccarato added games of 230, 200 and 255 for a 685 total.

The pair also teamed up to take the top spot in Diamond Doubles at the 2014 Women’s Championships, which was held at the nearby Reno-Sparks Convention Center.

Entering the 2018 event, Romeo and Naccarato have five and four Women’s Championships titles, respectively.

On May 14, Golden Approach Pro Shop of Dayton, Ohio (right), secured the lead in Diamond Team with a 2,703 total.

Led by Rebecca Whiting‘s 713 series, Golden Approach Pro Shop posted games of 925, 885 and 893 on the way to the top of the standings. Whiting was joined by three-time Women’s Championships titlist Shannon Pluhowsky (693), Rebekah Martin (660) and Kelly Belzeski (637).

In addition to Schock, Wendy Mann (left) of South Elgin, Illinois, also is looking to claim a pair of titles at the 2018 event after taking the lead in Emerald Singles and Emerald All-Events on May 7.

Mann, who teamed with Betty Jean Davis of Herbert, Illinois, to win the Emerald Doubles title in 2017, rolled games of 210, 203 and 225 in singles for a 638 series and added 637 in team and 524 in doubles for a 1,799 total.

The 2018 Women’s Championships also featured two perfect games.

Three-time Women’s Championships titlist Lindsay Boomershine (right) of Perry, Utah, connected for 300 during her final game of doubles May 16 for a 762 series, and 2012 USBC Queens champion Diandra Asbaty (left) of Chicago rolled 12 consecutive strikes minutes later on the way to a 729 singles series.

The perfect games were the 26th and 27th in tournament history and marked the first 300s at the event since 2014.

Longevity again was celebrated in 2018 as nine bowlers joined the event’s 50-Year Club.

The group included USBC Hall of Famer Annese Dunleavy (right) of Boynton Beach, Florida; Bonnie Anderson of Kingsland, Texas; Ann Keerbs of Spirit Lake, Iowa; Helen Kidwell of Indianapolis; Phyl Knoll of Hawthorne, California; Carolyn Leifheit of DeKalb, Illinois; Evelyn Meier and Joani Nelsen of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; and Eva Lou Rhoads of Englewood, Florida.

From May 16-22, the Women’s Championships stage was home to the USBC Queens, a major championship on the PWBA Tour, and welcomed nearly 200 of the top female bowlers from around the world to compete for the coveted tiara awarded to the winner.

Team USA’s Shannon O’Keefe (left) of O’Fallon, Illinois, a four-time titlist at the Women’s Championships, won the 2018 Queens by defeating Bryanna Coté of Red Rock, Arizona, 221-189. The stepladder finals of the 2018 event were broadcast live on CBS Sports Network.

The Women’s Championships will celebrate its 100th edition in 2019 at Northrock Lanes in Wichita, Kansas.

For more information on the Women’s Championships, click here.

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2018 USBC Women’s Championships Team Results

Top 5 division leaders with hometown and pinfall

Division 1 – Diamond
(For bowlers with combined averages of 725 and above)
1, Golden Approach Pro Shop (Rebecca Whiting, Rebekah Martin, Kelly Belzeski, Shannon Pluhowsky), Dayton, Ohio, 2,703. 2, Ballard vs. the Big “C”, Keller, Texas, 2,597. 3, Storm Nation, Brigham City, Utah, 2,586. 4, Striking Expectations LV, Las Vegas, 2,582. 5, Husker Shox, Las Vegas, 2,555.

Ruby
(For bowlers with combined averages of 650-724)
1, TTC Ladies 1 (Willetta Allen, Gail Gilchrist, Michelle Ball, Angelena Pride), Alta Loma, Calif., 2,176. 2, Dolls with Bowling Balls, Lake Havasu City, Ariz., 2,126. 3, PPBCs Gals, Torrance, Calif., 2,112. 4, Sierra Strikers, Sierra Vista, Ariz., 2,100. 5, Marcia Glaspie Team 2, Lanham, Md., 2,095.

Emerald
(For bowlers with combined averages of 575-649)
1, LA 4 (Nina Dubois, Vada Shone, Norma Haimbach, Ida Shrader), Montgomery, La., 2,058. 2, It’s Us, Fords, N.J., 2,041. 3, Split Personalities, Littleton, Colo., 2,032. 4, Three State Rollers, Cordova, Tenn., 1,981. 5, Diamonds and Pearls 1, San Antonio, 1,976.

Sapphire
(For bowlers with combined averages of 574 and below)
1, Southern Ladies 10 (Gwendolyn Bridges, Yvonne Iruke, Bonita Hampton, Yolanda Williams), Covina, Calif., 1,897. 2, Anderson Agency No. 2, Lakeville, Minn., 1,891. 3, Alley Oops 2, Carrizo Springs, Texas, 1,864. 4, Rural Operators, Reeds Spring, Mo., 1,849. 5, Wyoming Wild Bunch, Thermopolis, Wyo., 1,843.

2018 USBC Women’s Championships Doubles Results

Top 5 Division leaders with hometown and pinfall

Division 1 – Diamond
(For bowlers with averages of 380 and above)
1, Jeanne Naccarato, Tacoma, Wash./Robin Romeo, Newhall, Calif., 1,405. 2, Jadee Scott-Jones, Newport, R.I./Gazmine Mason, Cranston, R.I., 1,398. 3, Ashley Bell, New Berlin, Wis./Katelyn Zwiefelhofer, Racine, Wis., 1,361. 4, Emily Fagan, Las Vegas/Adrienne Hare, Rio Rancho, N.M., 1,353. 5, Brittany Himmelreich, Cressona, Pa./Mandy Wilson, Dayton, Ohio, 1,348.

Ruby
(For bowlers with combined averages of 350-379)
1, Sheila Cole, North Chesterfield, Va./Mary Pugh, Richmond, Va., 1,217. 2, Michelle Okrent, Las Vegas/Julie Jaques, Henderson, Nev., 1,139. 3, Bre Higgins, North Platte, Neb./Cindy Johnson, Loveland, Colo., 1,135. 4, Cynthia Littles, San Antonio/Tanya Myers, New Braunfels, Texas, 1,133. 5, Brittany Wilson, Chicago/Ritzel Velarde, Schaumburg, Ill., 1,130.

Emerald
(For bowlers with combined averages of 320-349)
1, Cynthia Pisani, Castro Valley, Calif./Lynette Carone, San Ramon, Calif., 1,195. 2, Kristin Kerr, Grants Pass, Ore./Ashley Kerr, Brookings, Ore., 1,158. 3, Cheri Zacherson/Sandy Gilly, Grantsville, Utah, 1,114. 4, Gretchen Rieder, Richmond, Minn./Angela Kiess, Albany, Minn., 1,105. 5. Jessica Slagle, Kirby, Wyo./Ella Parker, Thermopolis, Wyo., 1,098.

Sapphire
(For bowlers with combined averages of 290-319)
1, Katrice Woods/Barbara Woods, Dodge City, Kan., 1,088. 2, Michelle Barnette, Leroy, Mich./Rose Swaffer, Cadillac, Mich., 1,081. 3, Donna Ishii, Caruthers, Calif./Alyssa Ishii, Chino Hills, Calif., 1,065. 4, Rachel Ruiz, Covina, Calif./Jessica Ting, Valinda, Calif., 1,061. 5, Angie Hand/Julie Battershaw, Valentine, Neb., 1,050.

Amethyst
(For bowlers with combined averages of 260-289)
1, Leanne Urtiaga, Perris, Calif./Kara Lyons, Riverside, Calif., 1,038. 2, Laura Smith, Glenwood, Utah/Lisa Lott, Elsinore, Utah, 1,011. 3, Ruby Wiley, Winston-Salem, N.C./Gail Davis, Albany, Ga., 995. 4, Joyce Crosby/Carolyn Crosby, Brooksville, Fla., 980. 5, Leona Parker/Heather Mullaney, Baltimore, 978.

Topaz
(For bowlers with combined averages of 259 and below)
1, Lisa Henderson, Odenton, Md./Julie Carter, Linthicum, Md., 954. 2, Karie Struble, Corvallis, Ore./Lauri Lewis, Philomath, Ore., 942. 3, Celeste Tempel, Menifee, Calif./Michele Jewett, Lake Elsinore, Calif., 926. 4, Gail Crews, Bowling Green, Fla./Judith Rowe, Sebring, Fla., 923. 5, Brielle Brosier, St. George, Utah/Debbie Perkins, Downers Grove, Ill., 916.

2018 USBC Women’s Championships Singles Results

Top 5 Division leaders with hometown and pinfall

Division 1 – Diamond
(For bowlers with averages of 190 and above)
1, AJ Schock, Battle Ground, Wash., 787. 2, Joely O’Grady, Rahway, N.J., 754. 3, Brenda Axel, Oceanside, Calif., 740. 4, Erin McCarthy, Omaha, Neb., 732. 5(tie), Diandra Asbaty, Chicago, and Leea Haworth, Yelm, Wash., 729.

Ruby
(For bowlers with averages from 175-189)
1, Desirae Armstrong, Ogden, Utah, 682. 2, Kitty Colgrove, Alexandria, Minn., 663. 3, Lana Frazier, Paterson, N.J., 644. 4, Toni Townsend, Galveston, Texas, 641. 5, Patty Venneman, Auburn, Calif., 639.

Emerald
(For bowlers with averages from 160-174)
1, Wendy Mann, South Elgin, Ill., 638. 2, Kim Jones, Waukegan, Ill., 618. 3, Lisa Perreault, Grand Forks, N.D., 611. 4, Jazzmine Vreeland, Payette, Idaho, 602. 5, Sandy Dietz, Santa Barbara, Calif., 601.

Sapphire
(For bowlers with averages from 145-159)
1, Jennifer Williamson, Stafford, Va., 582. 2, Sue Moen, Roscoe, Ill., 580. 3(tie), Shirley Johnson, Accokeek, Md., and Kimberly St. Romain, Baytown, Texas, 572. 5(tie), Paige Skinker, Murrieta, Calif., and Gwendolynn Edwards, Bellevue, Neb., 568.

Amethyst
(For bowlers with averages from 130-144)
1, Peggy Burchard, Sycamore, Ill., 549. 2, Carolyn Rice, Casa Grande, Ariz., 542. 3, Mary Brown, Gate, Okla., 541. 4, Linda Lam, Oak Park, Ill., 537. 5, Mary Pierson, Hastings, Minn., 533.

Topaz
(For bowlers with averages of 129 and below)
1, Francis Scoggins, Andrews, Texas, 531. 2, Patricia Feiteira, Wailuku, Hawaii, 509. 3, Jeana Doll, Sweet Home, Ore., 508. 4, Noreen Nunes, Orland, Calif., 498. 5, Debra Galloway, Austin, Texas, 484.

2018 USBC Women’s Championships All-Events Results

Top 5 Division leaders with hometown and pinfall

Division 1 – Diamond
(For bowlers with averages of 190 and above)
1, AJ Schock, Battle Ground, Wash., 2,132. 2, Julia Bond, Aurora Ill., 2,128. 3, Diandra Asbaty Chicago, 2,086. 4, Lindsay Boomershine, Perry, Utah, 2,065. 5, Adrienne Hare, Rio Rancho, N.M., 2,046.

Ruby
(For bowlers with averages from 175-189)
1, Margo Beck, Richmond, Va., 1,765. 2, Tina Armijo, Tijeras, N.M., 1,752. 3, Melinda Neal, Moreno Valley, Calif., 1,745. 4, Angela Gates, Delta, Colo., 1,743. 5, Sheila Cole, North Chesterfield, Va., 1,728.

Emerald
(For bowlers with averages from 160-174)
1, Wendy Mann, South Elgin, Ill., 1,799. 2, Kelly Teague, Milwaukee, 1,738. 3, Lynette Carone, San Ramon, Calif., 1,730. 4, Donna Ray, Rock Hill, S.C., 1,706. 5, Barbara Root, Tacoma, Wash., 1,686.

Sapphire
(For bowlers with averages from 145-159)
1, Wendy Steve, El Cerrito, Calif., 1,600. 2, Kimberly St. Romain, Baytown, Texas, 1,591. 3, Carol Quesnel, Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada, 1,585. 4, Marilyn Barcelona, Lemoore, Calif., 1,574. 5, Stacey Schoenberg, St. Stephen, Minn., 1,572.

Amethyst
(For bowlers with averages from 130-144)
1, Mary Pierson, Hastings, Minn., 1,501. 2, Debbie Perkins, Downers Grove, Ill., 1,494. 3, Vickie Hensley, Mineral Wells, Texas, 1,491. 4, Jackie Madden, Little Rock, Ark., 1,480. 5, Tamara Foster, New Palestine, Ind. 1,477.

Topaz
(For bowlers with averages of 129 and below)
1, Chelsea Couto, Kerman, Calif., 1,385. 2, Julie Carter, Linthicum, Md., 1,357. 3, Carolyn Marcus, Ten Sleep, Wyo., 1,344. 4, Debra Ansbach, Williams, Ariz., 1,341. 5, Lynn Okopinski, Milwaukee, 1,336.

Herbert Bickel

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