His journey to five decades of participation began in 1960, just after his return home from serving in the United States Marines. He attended his first USBC Open Championships in Toledo, Ohio.
“That was the biggest thrill of my life to that point,” Sroka said. “Tonight, however, this was the biggest thrill I’ve ever experienced in bowling.”
To commemorate the event at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nevada, Sroka received a plaque, chevron and special lapel pin. He was escorted down Center Aisle by his wife, Becky, and daughter, Jacqueline.
In 1990, Sroka was inducted into the Greater Pittsburgh USBC Bowling Association Hall of Fame for Superior Performance, and, clearly, there has been no letting up for the 79-year-old right-hander, who was inducted into the Southeastern Ohio USBC Hall of Fame earlier this year.
Matt Gilman of Pembroke Pines, Florida, rolled the second perfect game of the 2016 Bowlers Journal Championships presented by USBC.
The 34-year-old right-hander and his teammates were using the event as a warm-up for their time at the 2016 USBC Open Championships this week.
The two events are being held side by side at the National Bowling Stadium, with the Bowlers Journal Championships featuring the 39-foot oil pattern being used for doubles and singles at the Open Championships.
Gilman opened his set at the Bowlers Journal on June 6 with a 166 game before connecting on 12 consecutive shots to join fellow Floridian Sean Riccardi of St. Petersburg as the only bowlers to shoot 300 on the Showcase Lanes this year. Gilman finished with 185 for a 651 series. Riccardi leads Open Singles at the BJ this year with 767.
Howard Beekman of Gillette, New Jersey, and Joseph Leiser of Gainesville, Georgia, will celebrate 50 years of USBC Open Championships participation June 8 at 8 p.m. Eastern.
Beekman and Leiser will be the final two of 19 bowlers scheduled to reach the milestone this year at the National Bowling Stadium.
Other milestones this year included the late Sylvester Thiel of Lake City, Minnesota, tying the tournament’s participation record of 71 years, while USBC Hall of Famer Glenn Allison of Anaheim, California, reached 65 years and a pair of competitors, USBC Hall of Famer Bob Hart of Suwanee, Georgia, and Robert Teeters of Lapel, Indiana, competed for the 60th time.
Teeters and Frank Clay of Crystal Lake, Illinois, also became members of the elite 100,000-Pin Club at the Open Championships.
For more information on the Open Championships, click here.
USBC Hall of Famer Bob Hart reaches 60 years at 2016 USBC Open Championships
USBC Hall of Famer Glenn Allison reaches 65 years at 2016 USBC Open Championships
David Cirigliano leads team, ties Open Championships record
Indiana’s Robert Teeters reaches two milestones
Defending champions Sparks, McNiel won’t repeat in 2016
Three bowlers reach 50 years at 2016 USBC Open Championships
Past champion Tim Janz rolls first 300 of 2016 USBC Open Championships
Past champions Mills, Heilman tie for Regular Doubles lead
Defending Team All-Events champion Junior Team USA Support 1 makes run
First-timer David Hjelm leads two events
Ohio bowler Jack Glick celebrates 50 years
Sylvester Thiel ties participation record with 71st appearance
Ohio teammates lead every event at USBC Open Championships
2016 USBC Open Championships gets going in Reno
Top 10 division leaders with hometown and pinfall
1, Bowling Dynamics.com (Robert Lewis, Steven Roberts, Kelly Urrea, Warren Eales, David Cirigliano), Phoenix, 3,300. 2, Vandaniker 1, Chatsworth, Calif., 3,266. 3, Who’s Eddie Byrd? Fort Worth, Texas, 3,241. 4, HornswogglerS, Staten Island, N.Y., 3,237. 5, Simmons Team Sports, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., 3,224. 6, S&B Pro Shop 1, Clinton Township, Mich., 3,216. 7, Wickliffe Lanes, Mentor, Ohio, 3,202. 8, Logo Infusion Original, Las Vegas, 3,200. 9, Linds Lakers 1, Brooklyn Park, Minn., 3,187. 10(tie), The Warner Brothas, Louisville, Ky. and West Texas A&M 1, Canyon, Texas 3,184.
1, Greg Thomas, Irmo, S.C./Christopher Hill, Franklin, Wis., 1,401. 2, Ted Rosenquist Jr., Valparaiso, Ind./James Capps, Kenosha, Wis., 1,365. 3(tie), Matthew Zitnik, Mayfield Heights, Ohio/Jason Bowles, Euclid, Ohio, and Nick Heilman/Andy Mills, La Crosse, Wis., 1,341. 5, David Ewald, Macomb, Mich./Nicholas Wissinger, Clinton Township, Mich., 1,337. 6, Kevin Tatrow, Bel Aire, Kan./Will Barnes, Austin, Texas, 1,335. 7, Scott Honeysett/Michael Bradfield, Lansing, Mich., 1,334. 8, Michael Lisch, Zionsville, Ind./John Bauerle Jr., Indianapolis, 1,331. 9, Samuel Lantto, Eden Prairie, Minn./Todd Savoy, Superior, Wis., 1,330. 10(tie), Jay Nephew, Houston/Robert Raymond, Pflugerville, Texas, and Jonathan Wilbur, North Clarendon, Vt./Todd Lathrop, Colchester, Conn., 1,328.
1, Robert J. Bures, Painesville, Ohio, 815. 2, Matt Smallin, Glenburn, N.D., 785. 3, Michael Klimpel, Rosemount, Minn., 781. 4, Camden Rokita, Springfield, Ill., 779. 5, Steve Smith, San Diego, 776. 6, Jacob Genz, Rock Island, Ill., 772. 7, Tim Janz, Beaver Dam, Wis., 770. 8, Jimmy Clark, Topsham, Maine, 767. 9, Daniel Vick, Pittsford, N.Y., 765. 10, Will Barnes, Austin, Texas, 764.
1, Jakob Butturff, Chandler, Ariz., 2,124. 2, Robert J. Bures, Painesville, Ohio, 2,122. 3, David Cirigliano, Phoenix, 2,097. 4, Joe Massey, Flora, Ind., 2,086. 5, Casey Creutz, Carteret, N.J., 2,077. 6, Justin Crumley, Washington, Mo., 2,075. 7, Steve Smith, San Diego, 2,067. 8, Warren Eales, Chandler, Ariz., 2,064. 9, Matt Smallin, Glenburn, N.D., 2,060. 10, Tim Hill, Lincoln, Calif., 2,058.
1, HornswogglerS (Ray Smarsh, Manuel Gonzales, Dan Dunleavy, Rusty Thomsen, Alex Cavagnaro), Staten Island, N.Y., 9,719. 2, Bowling Dynamics.com, Phoenix, 9,710. 3, Junior Team USA Support 1, Eagan, Minn., 9,672. 4, Crankers Arn’t Us, Aurora, Colo., 9,599. 5, Wickliffe Lanes, Mentor, Ohio, 9,598. 6, S&B Pro Shop 1, Clinton Township, Mich., 9,587. 7, Linds Lakers 1, Brooklyn Park, Minn., 9,582. 8, Rose Bowl Lanes, Rochester, N.Y., 9,561. 9, Vick-tamizers, Lititz, Pa., 9,555. 10, Team NABR, West Henrietta, N.Y., 9,525.
Top 10 division leaders with hometown and pinfall
1, U of O Alumni (Dean Vrooman, John Lorenz, Don Allen, Darrin Allen, Todd Vrooman), Tualatin, Ore., 2,710. 2, We Are Here Any Way, Naperville, Ill., 2,702. 3, Yeah Spare IV, Sacramento, Calif., 2,656. 4, Bay Area Express 8, San Mateo, Calif., 2,618. 5, Expo II, Hodges, S.C., 2,610. 6, T-Rays, Jamestown, N.D., 2,607. 7, Team Bazinga, Las Vegas, 2,582. 8, Scotty’s 3, Alexandria, Minn., 2,570. 9, Lavallee Machine, Woodstock Valley, Conn., 2,556., 10, Yeah Spare III, Sacramento, Calif., 2,555.
1, David Hjelm, Wheaton, Minn./Gary Sundby Jr., Dalton, Minn., 1,155. 2, Eric Douglass, Goldfield, Iowa/Mike Thielen, Eagle Grove, Iowa, 1,147. 3, Cassandra Tatum, Neptune, N.J./David Jenkins III, Tinton Falls, N.J., 1,119. 4, Randy Robinson/Crystal Forkner, Higginsville, Mo., 1,118. 5, Kathy Yourkavitch/Jerome Jackson, Kutztown, Penn., 1,117. 6, Hasnat Ahmad, Fairfax, Va./David Hsu, Great Falls, Va., 1,112. 7(tie), Nicholas Razink, Benson, Minn./Tyler Grabow, Twin Brooks, S.D., Mandy Quaas, Hutchinson, Minn./Jeremy Quaas, New Hope, Minn., Tom Trecha, Owosso, Mich./Elbert Sidel Jr., Morrice, Mich., and Cleofe Aragon/Wilson Silva, San Mateo, Calif., 1,111.
1, David Kettell, Lindenhurst, N.Y., 644. 2, Allan Johnson, Hawley, Minn., 627. 3, Matt Tschann, Paynesville, Minn., 626. 4, Willie Kemp, Santa Fe, TX, 617. 5, Andrew Hall, Safety Harbor, Fla., 614. 6(tie), Joseph Rhinehart, Albany, Ore., and John Keiper, Libertyville, Iowa, 613. 7, Randy Williams, Arlington, Texas, 609. 9(tie), Trudy Koberlein, Georgetown, Texas, and Audra Banko, Riverside, Calif., 605.
1, Trudy Koberlein, Georgetown, Texas, 1,754. 2, Joseph Rhinehart, Albany, Ore., 1,735. 3, Bryan Herald, Chapman, Neb., 1,728. 4(tie), David Hjelm, Wheaton, Minn., and Robert Benjamin, Downers Grove, Ill., 1,713. 6, John McReady, Woodridge, Ill., 1,708. 7, George Kolstad, West St. Paul, Minn., 1,700. 8, Kevin Kwan, Long Beach, Calif., 1,695. 9, Jack Hsiao, Las Vegas, 1,685. 10, Frank Marrelli, Helper, Utah, 1,683.
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