Pulling double duty is not that big a deal to these veteran bowlers

I’ve always been impressed with bowlers who throw the rock in three or four different leagues a week. Their love for the sport is great and they obviously enjoy spending time at the bowling alley. Personally I have never bowled in more than two leagues per week, but I can appreciate the person who is willing to have a go at league play on several different nights.

It’s the bowlers who pull double duty who amaze me. I’m talking about the kegler who participates in more than one league in a single day. Now there are not many activities that I am willing to do more than once a day. Stop chuckling, eating is not a sport. Neither is napping. Those days when I take a nap in the morning and another one in the afternoon well, that just doesn’t count.

When I stopped in to observe the Wednesday Morning League last week, I had the chance to talk to a couple bowlers who regularly bowl in two leagues on the same day. I wanted to know two things. 1) Why do they do it? 2) How do they do it? Seriously, six games in one day is a lot of bowling.

I sat down with Paul Landers and we reminisced about the good old days. He mentioned that he remembers a time when a bowler from the late shift would come up to him and ask if anyone had claimed the table he was sitting at. That would be at least an hour before they were scheduled to bowl. Those days are gone though. Fewer bowlers and fewer leagues have actually led to his double duty.

Paul Landers is now 68 years old. Many of his former bowling buddies have quit the sport because of shoulder surgery or knee replacements. He knows he is lucky to feel good enough to bowl. In fact he said his only injury is a pulled hamstring – and he did that while bowling!

Because he is so healthy, he decided he wanted to bowl twice a week. The only fly in that ointment is that he has a job where he works during the afternoon into the early evening. He can only bowl in the morning or in a late shift league. The only morning league at Heritage Lanes is on Wednesday. The only late shift league is the Rocket League which takes to the lanes on, you guessed it, Wednesday night. Now you know why he is a double-duty bowler.

I suppose I could pull off his double, but not if I worked in between. Hey, I need my nap.

Harry Smith is another bowler who I knew bowled more than once on Wednesdays. He also rolls the rock at the K of C Lanes in the 55 Plus League, an early shift Wednesday league. Just for good measure he frequently bowls with senior citizens on Wednesday afternoons. That effort, he is quick to point out, is only two games though. By my count that brings the grand total to eight games for the day. How can one do that?

Harry was not impressed with my admiration. He used to live in Toronto where bowling was a very popular sport. It was not uncommon for Harry to bowl in three leagues in a single day. He would bowl in the morning, the afternoon and again in the evening. For good measure, he would bowl in tournaments on the weekends. Didn’t think it was a big deal then. Still doesn’t.

As I left the bowling alley I was inspired by Harry. I hurried home to make plans to take a nap!

We’ll start this week’s scores from the K of C Lanes. In the Tuesday Night League Rick Smith shot 641, Tim Sturgill 624, Scott Ferguson 609, Chris Johnson 602, Justin Hoepf 593, Steve Depinet 562, James Lord 562, Brett Elchert 559 and Aaron Jones 551. Carol Burmeister shot 454, Marilyn Gangluff 442, Madonna Gase 422, Norita Streacker 408, Marge Wilhelm 402 and Tammy Schalk 398 in the Lady Knights League. In the 55 Plus League Bill Mizen rolled a 623, Bob Reinhart 604, Jim Ruess 581, Dick Gabel 513, John Ferstler 508, Rick Hanna 499, Bob West 475, Jim Ferstler 469, Paul Gosche 468 and Jim Donaldson 356.

In the Sportsman League Scott Hartsel led the way with a 673. Rich Yates Jr. had 672, Greg Tiell 653, Jim Mason 651, Ken Butturff Jr. 629, Jacob Moore 624, Tom Wilkinson 616, Ed Wilson 606 and Rustan Burks 603. Scores from the Wednesday Morning League included David Jumper 657, Harry Smith 654, Tyson Shope 652, Paul Landers 602, Ed Wilson 563, Dianne Smith 481, Cheryl Radin-Norman 471 and Sharon Dowdell 447.

Action from the Alley Cats League found Carla Siebenaller shooting 550, Robin Dickman 536, Janet Houk 492, Ellen Ewing 490 and Christine Smith 480. Tyson Shope led the Rocket League with 652, while Tim Sturgill shot 649, Steve Barnes 642, Tom Tiell 601, Pat McCarthy 591 and Dottie Funk 477. In the Imperial-Majorette League Ben Hoyda shot 597, Brian Jakupca 594, Bob Eaton 579, Deb Nominee 478, Phyllis Riley 472 and Phyllis Hyde 443.

Al Stephenson is The Advertiser-Tribune’s bowling columnist.

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