Youth games bloom around area lanes

Published March 4, 2007

Spring is the time for flowers to grow. Spring is the time for, well, kids to bowl.

High school youths are taking strides at just about every center in the county for two spring leagues. There's the usual Pinellas County High School league and a new lower county Spring Trio.

Running as the second part of the fall league, the PCHSL includes mainly North County high schools. Countryside, which won the fall season, remains atop the scratch and handicap results with Jon Brady's third-best average of 201 alongside Jared Solomon, who is holding a 184 and had a nice 627 last week, and Matt Florio 181, and Travis Vorbeck. The Cougars lead Tarpon Springs and league-leading scorer Ashly Galante's 220 average - and overall league best 265 game and girls best series of 714 - by 21 points after Week 7.

David Hinkle and Tommy Frain have helped the Spongers hold a slight advantage over third-place Palm Harbor University's Aaron Morris, Blake Rasmussen and Mike Coneby.

East Lake's Joe May has held his own with a 215 average and holds the best boys game of 260, putting the Eagles in fourth. Another PHU bowler, Chris Grube holds the overall best series with his 746 last week that featured a 257 game, alongside his teammates Brittany and Stephanie Scanlon. Stephanie's holding down a 183 average and is just under Galante in all categories.

Responding to horrible traffic conditions and the 15-year absence of a lower county league, Seminole, Twedts, Sunrise, Ten Pins and Liberty have been hosting the inaugural Teen Spring Trio for mainly South County students, but no school affiliation is needed and the teams of three can be made up of a combination of schools.

The Who, including Cory Hatchell, Corey Hall and Robert Sullo are atop the handicapped-only league by nine points over Emily Clark, Joshua Knapp and Tyler Smits, last week's high scratcher with a 265 and 702 total, of Viva Pinata who took over second place from Osceola-X's A.J. Foley, Matt Hawley and Greg Krug.

Angie Papia of The Incredibles had last week's best game, a 224 scratch for a 580 series, just under Heather Janson of The Three Amigos who had a 610 scratch. Jared Meyer of ACJ is leading the season's game as of Week 7 with a 296 in his pocket and Anthony Yingling has the best series of 709. Joey Alore continues to bowl well and had 11 in a row during his 276/667. Other first-half honors came from Zack Rivera (245/689), Cody Cameron (277/704), Jacob Agne (244/610), Miranda Barber (157-avg/203/501) and Adam Zbyszinski (267/705).

The PCHSL bowls every Wednesday at 3:30. On March 7, it will be at Dunedin. For complete results check leaguesecretary.com and type in league numbers 7814 and 7815. The Trio runs every Thursday. They're 27059 on leaguesecretary.com.

PBA: The chances of winning a tour title after advancing from the tour qualifying round are slim. The chances of it happening two straight seasons in the same building are slimmer.

But last week in Parkersburg, W.Va., the unthinkable happened. Mike Mineman repeated Sean Rash's feat in the 2006 West Virginia Championship, advancing from the qualifying round and running the table to win the 2007 Bayer Classic, becoming just the second non-exempt bowler to win a tour title. In the title match, Mineman struck out in the 10th frame to force Mike Machuga to strike out to tie, but Machuga left a 10-pin on his first shot and history repeated itself at Emerson Lanes.

The second of four majors, the 64th U.S. Open, is in North Brunswick, N.J. The live ESPN finals are today at noon.

UPCOMING: The forms are at local centers for the 70th annual St. Petersburg Bowling Association City Tournament, April 14-15 and 21-22 at Liberty Lanes.

- Dunedin has its 100 & Over Doubles Tournament - meaning a combined age of 100 for two partners - on March 17 at 3 p.m. All the details are available at the center or online at dunedinlanes.com.

Fax Eric Muskatevc at (727) 789-9530 or e-mail emuskatevc@aol.com.