Former team champions set pace at USBC Women's Championships


    United States

    Doubles and Singles leads also change hands

    2010USBCWCBohnZoneChicks.jpgThe start of the 2010 United States Bowling Congress Queens is just days away, and some of the best women bowlers in the world are making their way to the El Paso Convention and Performing Arts Center early to sharpen their skills at the USBC Women's Championships.

    The Bohn Zone Chicks (pictured) of Jackson, N.J., the 2008 Classic Division Team champion, took to the tournament lanes Tuesday and posted games of 1,116, 935 and 1,140 for a 3,191 total, the highest scratch team score of this year's event.

    They group also received an additional nine pins of handicap, bringing its overall total to 3,200, which is good for second place in the Diamond Division. 30 Bowl of Fremont, Neb., currently leads with a 3,305 handicap total.

    Kristin Nieter led the way for the Bohn Zone Chicks with a 705 series and was followed by Chrissie Kent (684), Kari Watson (670), Leslie Bohn (592) and Cara Lukosius (540).

    Along with the new, three-division handicap format, the Women's Championships is recognizing the top scratch scores in team, doubles, singles, all-events and Team All-Events as overall tournament champions. There is an additional $8,000 prize fund reserved for the top three scratch scores in team, doubles, singles and all-events.

    The Bohn Zone Chicks came out of the gates striking, but struggled as the lanes transitioned throughout the second game. Their years of experience proved to be the difference as they regrouped and rolled the highest team game of the 2010 tournament.

    "We were a little unsure as the lanes changed," said Bohn, who is married to Professional Bowlers Association Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III. "We lost our carry and just kept making small adjustments. We finished really strong in the 10th frame of the second game and carried the momentum from there."

    Bohn, Nieter, Kent and Watson were members of the 2008 team that claimed the title with 3,171 team total. Lukosius also owns a place in the record books after firing one of the nine perfect games in the tournament's 91-year history (2002).

    Bohn credits the team's ability to play the same part of the lane as one of the main reasons for their success year in and year out.

    "One of the keys is that we work well together and can play the same part of the lane," said Bohn, who bowls at Howell Lanes in Howell, N.J. "We stay focused and are willing to put aside ourselves for the team. It was truly a team performance tonight."

    Bohn was in Sun City last week to watch the Intercollegiate Team Championships, which also was held in the unique tournament venue. The Wichita State alumna, who led the Shockers to the 1990 championship, celebrated the 20-year anniversary of her own ITC victory by watching the Wichita State men's team claim its record 10th title.

    Now, the Bohn Zone Chicks will have to wait and see how their score holds up. They realize that many talented bowlers are still on their way to El Paso, especially this week, but they hope to find themselves on top again at the conclusion of the 100-day tournament.

    "I think it's a good score," Bohn said. "There are a lot of great teams yet to play. It would be awesome to win as a team again, so we'll cross our fingers and hope we can hold on."


    Doubles and Singles leads also change hands

    2010USBCWCSandraMarescaKayRoush.jpgOn Wednesday morning, the Diamond Division doubles, scratch doubles and scratch singles leads also changed hands at the USBC Women's Championships.

    L-R Sandra Maresca of Mamaroneck, N.Y., and Kay Roush of Dade City, Fla., teamed up to set the bar in scratch doubles with 1,327, and their additional 48 pins of handicap helped them to a 1,375 handicap total and the lead in Diamond Division Doubles. Ida Hammonds and Joyce Thompson of Houston previously held the lead with a 1,331.

    Maresca led the pair with a 669 series, and Roush added 658. The two met for the first time Tuesday evening as they prepared to compete the next morning. They share a mutual friend who brought them together on the tournament lanes.

    "We just met last night, but we had chemistry on the lanes," Maresca said. "We were able to repeat shots and sparemaking was huge."

    Maresca and Roush will hit the tournament lanes again tonight for their team event and look forward to seeing if the chemistry continues.

    "There was a good vibe out there today, and it's fun to bowl with a team with personality," Roush said. "There will be a lot of good bowlers on our pair tonight, so we can read each other and hopefully make the right adjustments."

    2010USBCWCMichelleSterner.jpgIn singles, Michelle Sterner (right) of Niagara Falls, N.Y., posted a 722 scratch series to take the lead. She fired games of 279, 225 and 218 to post the highest individual series of the 2010 Women's Championships.

    Sterner entered the tournament with a 225 average, so she didn't receive any additional handicap for the Diamond Division. Michelle Silvers of Ochlocknee, Ga., leads Diamond Division Singles with a 755 handicap total.

    The Diamond Division is made up of bowlers with averages of 180 and above, with handicap based off of 100 percent of 220. Diamond Division doubles teams have combined averages of 360 and above, with handicap based off of 100 percent of 440. Teams in the Diamond Division have combined averages of 900 and above, with handicap based off of 100 percent of 1,100.

    The 2010 USBC Queens, scheduled for April 23-28, brings together the top amateur and professional female bowlers in the world competing for a share of the $180,000 prize fund. The Senior Queens, for female USBC members who have reached the age of 50, will be held alongside the Queens. The Queens finals will be broadcast live on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. EDT on April 28.

    2010USBCWCLogo.jpg Presenting sponsors for the 2010 USBC Women's Championships are Nationwide Insurance; Kegel, official lane maintenance provider; US Steltronic, official scoring system; Brunswick; Storm Bowling Products Inc.; and the El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau.


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