USBC travelers 'Fix it and forget it!' at 2006 Women's Championships


    United States

    National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev. (March 16 - July 2, 2006)

    2006USBCWomensChampionshipLogo.jpg It takes a special breed of cat to be a member of the United States Bowling Congress Travelers program. Travelers spend nearly four months out of every year away from home, family and friends at the USBC Women's Championships, wherever the event may take them (17 different cities in the past 20 years). The Women's Championships is sponsored by the Eldorado, Silver Legacy and Circus Circus.

    Currently numbering 12 members, the travelers assume the countless day-to-day tasks behind the scenes to help make a tournament succeed, moving from tournament to tournament traveling hundreds of miles each year to do their jobs. Without tournament registrars, record keepers and squad room facilitators, the Women's Championships would not happen.

    Nobody's getting rich here, and the 100-plus consecutive days of bowling each year carry with them periods of job activity that can be intense and frenetic.

    So why do they do it, when they could enjoy a well-earned, more leisurely-paced life?

    "It's their love for the sport and a genuine caring for our bowlers," says David Biber, USBC Women's Championships manager. "Our Travelers have been bowling for decades, some before I was born - and they still bowl today. They're so dedicated to it that they've continued working for Travelers even though many have experienced personal hardships and some tragedies along the way. Frankly, I don't know how some of them do it. But I'm grateful they do."

    Lest anyone question that dedication, they can talk to Lori Micelli, a Traveler since 2002 and a former Women's International Bowling Congress employee for 27 years. The 66-year-old California native tore her rotator cuff in an accident shortly before the Women's Championships began this March.

    She put off the surgery her doctor advised at the time because it would have interfered with her four-month stint working the nationals in Reno. As she rubs her shoulder, Micelli concedes that it takes a "different" kind of person to function as a Traveler.

    "You have to be able to live by yourself a lot in the sense that you're away from family and neighbors and in unfamiliar surroundings, sometimes for months at a time," she notes. "But it's fun, and I enjoy revisiting with people that I've met over the years."

    Micelli spent the first nine years of her WIBC career at company headquarters in Greendale, Wis., and 18 more on the road as a field consultant, which she describes as a trouble-shooter, whose chief responsibility is to "make people happy." Micelli calls herself currently "homeless" - between residences in Denver and Dayton.

    Bev Palmer, 66, joined the Travelers in 1986. With a wink, she credits the longevity of her 45-year marriage, in part, to the program. "The four months I'm away from home each year helped," she laughs.

    Palmer has bowled in 24 nationals, including this year in Reno and will stick with the Traveler program for at least another year, which will mark her 25th tournament. "I love this work," she reflects enthusiastically.

    The downside for Palmer is the last day of the tournament: "I hate it," she insists. "Because you make so many friends, almost like family, and then you don't see them again until the following year."

    Janet Strong, 70, might possess one of the more unique reasons for joining the Travelers, which she did in 1983 in Las Vegas. A mother of three children who were stricken with a particularly debilitating disease, she was advised by her doctor to take the Travelers job to combat personal stress. She has since described that decision as a "life-saver."

    The St. Louis-area resident loves the traveling involved with being a member of the group. This year in Reno, Strong picked up her 25-year plaque and emblem. She boasts a 148 average.

    In particular, Strong remembers the 1989 Women's Championships in Bismarck-Mandan, N.D.:"One of the local motels burned down, which meant a serious shortage of rooms for bowlers," she says. "Those bowlers without accommodations were invited to stay with families in town. The residents drove out to the airport to pick them up. There were 'Welcome Bowlers" signs in all the windows. The people were unbelievable."

    The story of these three ladies testifies to all of the Travelers' professionalism. More importantly, it underscores their true passion for what they do. All in all, not a bad way to spend one-third of your days.

    Kegel is the official lane maintenance supplier of the United States Bowling Congress.

    Top five division leaders with hometowns and pinfall:


    Team (946 average and over)
    1, Strike 3, Sun City, Ariz., 3,021. 2, C&S Bowling Supply I, Plainfield, Ill., 2,946. 3, Laurel Bowl, Johnson City, N.Y., 2,917. 4, Valley Bowl Pro-Shop, Spokane, Wash., 2,911. 5, Keller Williams Realty 2, San Antonio, Texas, 2,895.

    Doubles (379 average and over)
    1, Carrie Meares, Seneca, S.C./Lisa Wagner, Duluth, Ga., 1,331. 2, Dianna Innerst, San Jose, Calif./Cathy Johnston, Folsom, Calif., 1,274. 3, Cherylle Secl-Cross, Marne, Mich./Carole Morgan, Wyoming, Mich., 1,263. 4, Bonnie Vaughan, Englewood, Ohio/Rae Parks, Vandalia, Ohio, 1,234. 5, Nicole Van Deventer/Laurie Clark, Sioux Falls, S.D., 1,231.

    Singles (190 average and over)
    1, Shannon Duplantis, New Orleans, 707. 2 (tie), Valerie Carrillo, Montebello, Calif., and Dawn Convay, Las Vegas, 691. 4, Lisa Wagner, Duluth, Ga., 683. 5, Mary Gifford, Belvidere, Ill., 680.

    All Events (190 average and over)
    1, Lisa Wagner, Duluth, Ga., 2,097. 2, Lisa Stevens, St. Charles, Ill., 1,991. 3, Kelly Borysiewicz, Franklin Square, N.Y., 1,989. 4, Nikki Lunsford, Plainfield, Ill., 1,967. 5, Patti Gleason, Palatine, Ill., 1,928.


    Team (846-945 average)
    1, Village Bar II, Omaha, Neb., 2,842. 2, Washington Mojo, Ferndale, Wash., 2,818. 3, Cavalettes 1, Sacramento, Calif., 2,811. 4, The Queen Bs 1, Loveland, Colo., 2,807. 5, BeauBien Street Saloon, Troy, Mich., 2,781.

    Doubles (339-378 average)
    1, Pam Schulz, Longview, Wash./Valery Hubbard, Kelso, Wash., 1,264. 2, Irma Day, Helotes, Texas/Julie Howard, San Antonio, Texas, 1,223. 3, Deidre Hicks, Morris, Ill./Joyce Underwood, Marseilles, Ill., 1,215. 4 (tie), Tonya Justinger, Painesville, Ohio/Marina Rimes, Madison, Ohio and Tracey Shaud, Fairlawn, N.J./Elissa Gotta, Kenosha, Wis., 1,203.

    Singles (170-189 average)
    1, Cathy Woessner, Euless, Texas, 710. 2, Kristine Kiesling, Las Vegas, 686. 3, Wynn Brandon, Reno, Nev., 676. 4, Paula Hallead, East Wenatchee, Wash., 674. 5, Barbara Stauffer, Liverpool, N.Y., 671.

    All Events (170-189 average)
    1, Maika Winkler, Antelope, Calif., 1,856. 2, Christel Butler, Kannapolis, N.C., 1,853. 3, Holly Fett, Las Vegas, 1,852. 4, Cathy Woessner, Euless, Texas, 1,819. 5, Kristine Kiesling, Las Vegas, 1,804.


    Team (746-845 average)
    1, Jax 1, Jacksonville, Fla., 2,734. 2, The X Effect, Purcellville, Va., 2,692. 3, Lady Queens, Merit, Texas, 2,691. 4, Southern Girls V, Pomona, Calif., 2,690. 5, Centennial Lanes 2, Hays, Kan., 2,658.

    Doubles (299-338 average)
    1, Sharon Cassidy, San Mateo, Calif./Elaine Van Otten, Pacifica, Calif., 1,171. 2, Kim Illhardt, Seguin, Texas/Janice Kuhen, San Marcos, Texas, 1,169. 3, Marilyn Hykes, Monrovia, Calif./Lynn Spencer, Temple City, Calif., 1,159. 4, Jeanna Brown, Bloomington, Ill./Joan Kaufman, Heyworth, Ill., 1,154. 5, Darcy Netz, Blue Lake, Calif./Linda Scott, Eureka, Calif., 1,143.

    Singles (150-169 average)
    1, Carol Hausman, Port Charlotte, Fla., 632. 2, Judith Kaufman, Winslow, Ill., 620. 3, Julie Andres, American Canyon, Calif., 619. 4 (tie), Joyce Moss, Columbus, Ohio, Linda Urbanek, Poway, Calif. and Sylvia Thomas, Columbus, N.C., 616.

    All Events (150-169 average)
    1, Shelley Hall, Long Beach, Calif., 1,774. 2, Nikita Williams, Oakland, Calif., 1,767. 3, Becky Carter, Anaheim, Calif., 1,741. 4, Pearl Cates-Bullock, Durham, N.C., 1,735. 5, Cheryl Blosch, South Wayne, Wis., 1,705.


    Team (651-745 average)
    1, Unbowlievables, Meridian, Idaho, 2,530. 2, Idaho Pick-Up Gals, Pocatello, Idaho, 2,501. 3, Just Marked, Oakland, Calif., 2,458. 4, D.C. Rollers Team 3, Brentwood, Md., 2,449. 5, Take Ten, Oklahoma City, 2,424.

    Doubles (261-298 average)
    1, Liese Parent/Jerry Best, Fairbanks, Alaska, 1,084. 2, Ronda Lutz, Paris, Idaho/Teresa Singleton, Montpelier, Idaho, 1,083. 3, Helen Sellars, Conroe, Texas/Linda Schmidt, Albuquerque, N.M., 1,081. 4, Anne Greer, Rainier, Ore./Alonnie Bolton, Oakland, Ore., 1,075. 5, Sandy Jackson, Minden, Nev./Sylvia Griffin, Detroit, 1,072.

    Singles (131-149 average)
    1, Nancy Galinat, Harrold, S.D., 638. 2, Linda Gearhart, Casa Grande, Ariz., 620. 3, Faye Stewart, Scott City, Kansas, 605. 4, Robin McGinnis, Petrolia, Pa., 598. 5, C.C. Deaky, Los Angeles, 596.

    All Events (131-149 average)
    1, Jennifer Reed, Hamilton, Va., 1,680. 2, Stephanie Dowd, El Paso, Texas, 1,644. 3, Ellen Harper, Visalia, Calif., 1,631. 4, Faye Stewart, Scott City, Kansas, 1,616. 5, Jen Helton, Huachuca City, Ariz., 1,609.


    Team (650 average and under)
    1, Bear Nasty, Monticello, Minn., 2,187. 2, Got Pins, Santa Rosa, Calif., 2,156. 3, North Idaho Crushing II, St. Maries, Idaho, 2,111. 4, Tumbleweed Lanes, Ness City, Kan., 2,096. 5, Lundeen Ford, Annandale, Minn., 2,091.

    Doubles (260 average and under)
    1, Kathy Belmer, Manteca, Calif./Regina Antunes, Stockton, Calif., 973. 2, Jenna Cameron/Debra Ingram, Springdale, Ark., 962. 3, Sharon Carroll/Dee Carroll, Newport, Wash., 945. 4 (tie), Lorna Robinson/Holly Rybensky, Omaha, Neb. and Dorothy Gabbard, Camden, Ohio/Michelle Poe, College Corner, Ohio, 941.

    Singles (130 average and under)
    1, Barbara Dynes, New Castle, Ind., 593. 2, Rose Postle, Rice Lake, Wis., 554. 3, Connie Monk, Yelm, Wash., 549. 4, Tracy Goodson, Belen, N.M., 546. 5, Shelly Bloch, Ramsey, Minn., 538.

    All Events (130 average and under)
    1, Linda Azuma, Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., 1,491. 2, Carol Hood, Waterville, Kansas, 1,490. 3, Connie Monk, Yelm, Wash., 1,481. 4, Kristine Ferguson, Greenville, Mich., 1,475. 5, Georgia Roberts, Wayland, Mo., 1,467.