Lowe: Shawn Maldonado claims BR Singles tourney title

Star Houston bowler Shawn Maldonado made it two straight wins at Circle Bowl in the BR Singles Tournament on Sunday when he defeated local bowler Clay Duke in an exciting final match.

Maldonado won the BR event when it was held at Circle in December, and the 243-average bowler picked up $2,353.50 for beating the field of 371 bowlers.

But it wasn’t an easy match for the title as one of the best two-handed bowlers in this area — and possibly anywhere outside the PBA tour — in Maldonado and Duke, who has had a long-standing successful career here, both came in off strong performances.

Maldonado will get good money out of the USBC Open in Reno, Nevada, standing 20th in all-events entering Sunday’s final day, while Duke was the top BR finisher in sixth in the scratch all-events in the recently completed state tournament.

In the two-game final, a four-frame swing where Duke left all single pins midway through the first game proved to be the difference as Maldonado jumped out to a 269-246 advantage. In the second game, both bowlers opened with the first seven strikes before Maldonado left a 10-pin in the eighth, giving Duke a small opening. But Duke left a 10-pin in the eighth, and Maldonado struck in the ninth and first ball in the 10th to clinch the win. Duke shot 279 in the second game to Maldonado’s 267, and the Houston bowler won the total pins 536-525.

Duke would win a good $1,176.75 for second place.

In the semis, Maldonado had to give 56 pins handicap to Keke Bourque of Lafayette and sneak away with a 447-441 win, while Duke deafeated another Baton Rouge bowler, Jeremiah Simon 474-427. The semifinalists won $494.24.

Locals making the round of eight were John Amedee, Derwin Pitre and Brian Yoches, getting $329.49, while Rich Bourgeois, Duke Koontz and Sumner Taylor got through to the round of 16 getting $188.28. Jacob Heger of Houston had the lone 300 game of the competition.

State Open results

The New Orleans team with a name we can’t use in print went wire-to-wire to win at 2,814, while a Lafayette team took second at 2,790. The locals bowling on the home lanes at Circle got a fourth-place best as the Bowler’s Pro Shop No. 1 had 2,777.

The doubles, bowled at All-Star Lanes, featured Donald Butler and Len Williams of Hammond taking second at 1,518, while Baton Rouge’s best was the team of Michael Carter Jr. and Damen Thomas at 1,516 (tie for 3rd). Arliss and Cecil McClendon of Baton Rouge were fifth at 1,510, while Ricky Achord and Steven Snider of Baton Rouge took sixth at 1,509. Carter and Thomas were second in the scratch doubles at 1,480 and Achord and Snider were third (1,429).

Glenn Coffey of Lafayette was best in handicap singles at 849 with Patrick Moore of Lafayette third at 832. Mike Carringone of Baton Rouge shot 807 for seventh. Michael Baham won the scratch singles with a 788. Baton Rouge’s Juan Coston was third at 749, and New Orleans bowler Temple Bourgeois was fifth at 734.

In the handicap all-events, Coffey won with 2,367, while Jimmy Boudreaux of New Orleans was fifth at 2,274. Chad Lanclos of Lafayette was second in scratch all-events at 2,128, while Bourgeois tied for fourth at 2,096 with Justin Hargrave of Lafayette. Duke was sixth.

Honor roll notes

Clay Duke led the city in bowling over the last couple of weeks with a 797 at Premier Lanes with a 286 high game, while Tristan Senegal at All-Star had a 720 with a 268 high game.

There were great scores in the youth leagues as Justin Bui had a 751 (267), and Curtis Westmoland had 11 strikes in a 290 game as part of a 737 series. Mike Bass led the senior leagues with a 713 (257).

Richard Loudenslager bowled 11 strikes in a row for a 290 game, while Anthony Moore Jr., Brett Vann and Tim Toler all had perfect 300 games. Senior bowler Jo Grosskopf recorded a series of 50 pins over average.

Some bowlers will be traveling, or will have traveled by the time we get together on July 23 as some of the top youth bowlers in the state will be heading for the junior championships and junior gold events in the Detroit area. Others will be heading to Columbus, Ohio, for the national Family Tournament that the Bowling Proprietors Association puts on.

Finally, the BPAA is back in charge of the U.S. Open, and the men and women will bowl in the same city and on the same show in Columbus, Ohio. Sumner Taylor and Deidra Johnson, both of Baton Rouge, will represent the state after earning the right to enter the event through a state qualifying event. The event will begin July 20 with the televised finals set for July 27 on ESPN. The men’s and women’s winners will meet immediately afterward in a one-game challenge match.

Until we join you July 23, good luck and good bowling.