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IBMA announces 2018 Major Award Winners


The International Bowling Media Association has elected Dan McDonough, Ken Lowman, Jason Belmonte, Liz Johnson, Norm Duke and Lucy Sandelin as the recipients of the 2018 IBMA Major Awards.

The winners will receive their awards during the BPAA Industry Awards Luncheon at the Paris Hotel, June 19, 2018, during International Bowl Expo.

Luby Hall of Fame – Dan McDonough

A BWAA member since 1993, Dan McDonough (pictured left) has been publisher of the Sports Reporter, a weekly tabloid providing bowling information to the New York/New Jersey area for since 1994.

Prior to that, he worked with the previous publisher of the paper going back to the 1960s doing photography, makeup/layout and distribution.

A man of many talents and a true sports historian, McDonough ran his own professional photography business and served on numerous civic committees for the Firefighters, Police, and his local Historical Society as well as working with the East Coast Bowling Proprietors Association. He has written on many subjects for various papers.

McDonough is a longtime member and president of the Metropolitan Bowling Writers Association, has served on various Hall of Fame committees and is in four Halls of Fame-state, county and two locals.

Alberta E. Crowe Meritorious Service – Ken Lowman

Ken Lowman (right) purchased the California Bowling News in the early 1970’s. He would continue as publisher until he sold the paper to bowling magnate Charles Kinstler and Carol Mancini in 1989.

In a time when many weekly bowling publications were closing, Lowman kept the California Bowling News alive. It remains, along with the New Jersey Sports Reporter, the longest running weekly publication, with both journals beginning in 1940.

He was elected to the Southern California Bowling Writers Hall of Fame in 1993, and the Los Angeles Bowling Association Hall of Fame in 1990, along with Roy Rogers, another famous personality from outside the bowling world.

He was a member of the National Composers Hall of Fame and came to us from the music and film industry, where he was best known for writing the music score of more than 100 Popeye cartoons. He was also an accomplished musician and played the bassoon in a Hollywood film orchestra.

Bowlers of the Year – Jason Belmonte & Liz Johnson

Jason Belmonte (left) of Australia was a clear choice for IBMA Bowler of the year, garnering all but two votes on the ballot.

He was the first player in PBA history to win three major championships among his four titles in 2017 and led the PBA in earnings ($238,912) and scoring average (a PBA record 229.39 for 380 games bowled).

Liz Johnson (right) of Palatine, Illinois, had a stellar season winning three titles, including two majors, and led the PWBA Tour in earnings ($83,500). She garnered nearly all the ballot votes, making this her third consecutive year winning the IBMA Female Bowler of the Year award.

Her seven overall wins bring her closer to tying the all-time winner, Marion Ladewig, who won the award nine times, including five consecutive wins (1950-1954).

Senior Bowlers of the Year – Norm Duke & Lucy Sandelin

Norm Duke (left) of Clermont, Fla., participated in eight PBA50 events in 2017 and won the PBA 50 Race City Open. He was the top earnings winner ($39,600.00) and finished second in average (232.00).

Duke, one of only four players to earn PBA and PBA 50 Player of the year also had a decent year on the PBA Tour with six cashes in eleven events for prize earnings of $76,840.

Lucy Sandelin (right) of Tampa, Fla., prevailed over Carolyn Dorin-Ballard in a very tight race for Senior Female Bowler of the Year. Sandelin was the 2017 USBC Senior Queens Champion and finished third in the National Golden Ladies event making her the top earnings winner among the senior women.

She also won the Senior Women’s divisions of the 2017 Tourneo de la Raza in Costa Rica and the Lee Evans Tournament of the Americas.

Herbert Bickel

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