About seven months ago, Troy Gibson was being interviewed about his latest perfect game at AMF Woodlake Lanes in Woodland Hills.
Gibson, a right-handed marksman from Calabasas, had just smoked his second perfect game in five months, his third in 11 months and his fourth in one year. His 300 game on March 20 of this year was one day off from being exactly one year since the one he rolled on March 21, 2012.
What was most amazing about Gibson’s hot spell in his “Wednesday Stars” league was that he confided that he doesn’t practice.
“I’m a once-a-week bowler,” said Gibson, adding that he just relies on his natural talent to score his seven 700 perfect games and two 800s.
What Gibson was saying represents one of the advantages that bowling holds over many other sports. Practice is just not necessary to enjoy oneself in the sport or to compete at a high level. That is not to stay that practice won’t make bowlers better. Sometimes, it can make bowlers much better.
But every week, bowlers go out to their leagues and blast 200 games and the occasional 300 without the aid of much – or any – practice. As talented bowler and coach Mike Weekley once said, some bowlers just enjoy going out once a week to their bowling league and chucking their ball down the lanes and watching the pins scatter. And there’s nothing wrong with that, he said.
And some, like Troy Gibson, are pretty darn good at it.
Right-handed Mike Hahn of Reseda is another bowler who comes out of the cold to bowl.
And he didn’t do too badly last week, scorching a 649 series with games of 254, 181 and 214 at Woodlake Lanes. The fun-loving Hahn ended both his first and third games in the "Guys and Dolls" league with opens in the 10th frames or his scores would have been even higher.
“I need to work on closing out my 200 games,” Hahn joked.
Would practice help him? That was probably the furthest thing from his mind. He was too busy celebrating his team’s sweep.