Have scoring levels increased big-time over the years, or what?
Four decades ago -- in the 1973-74 season -- Erv Raines had the top series at 728, and there were only two other 700-plus series in the Sarasota-Manatee County Bowling Association from September to May.
That same season, Jerry Klawitter was the first player in eight years to post a perfect game in the area, and there were only 12 other games of 275 or better throughout 1973-74. And in the previous season, John Bancs' 279 was the highest score rolled at any SMCBA center.
Fast-forward to this week, and compare the numbers. This weekend's Examiner.com high-score report from the seven area houses is headlined by Dave Grether's perfect game at Sarasota Lanes and Mike Aleshire's 806 series at Treasure Lanes.
Not only that, there were games of 299 and 297, a pair of 290s, four games in the 280s, ten 279s, ten other games from 270-278, plus 34 series between 700 and 799.
Competing in the La Malinche Restaurant League, Grether had finished his previous week's 781 series with a 299, being stymied by a final-ball 9-pin, but he opened the next session with a 300, before following with games of 216 and 214 for a 730 series that upped his average to 211.
Aleshire pounded out games of 259, 279 and 268 en route to his big series in the Kays-Ponger-Uselton Men's League, where he now carries a blistering 240 average.
A final-ball 10-pin kept Jim Sella from perfection in the same KPU Men's League. He opened with scores of 183 and 210 before the 299 completed a 692 series.
Sam Steiner began his series in the Yoder's Restaurant League at Sarasota Lanes with 11 consecutive strikes before settling for a 118-over-average 297 when a tugged Brooklyn hit resulted in a 5-6-10 split. He finished with a 643 series.
Mike Janosik blasted a 290 game in the middle of a 759 series in the Beef O'Brady's/Parquette Insurance Mixed League at Treasure Lanes, and he also posted 279-704 numbers in the Aero Sol Men's League in the same center. Also in the Aero Sol League, Ryan Williams fired a 290 game as part of 709 series.
Two area females topped the 700 series mark. Mickeal Paige rolled games of 227, 256 and 221 for a 704 set in the Thursday Mixed League at Bowland Port Charlotte, where she carries a 206 average. And Renae Gross posted a 703 set on games of 221, 225 and 257 in the Beef O'Brady's/Parquette Insurance League at Treasure Lanes to up her average to 214.
Eric Knepp fired a 103-over-average 275 game to complete a 667 series in the Yoder's Restaurant League at Sarasota Lanes, and Steve Dodge had a 182-over 731 series on games of 258, 238 and 235 on the final session of the season in the Sun-N-Fun League at the same center.
The following players also rolled far-over-average series: Christian Toepfer, a 172-over 730 in the Friday Mixed League at Bowland; Bill Meyers, a 158-over 728 that began with a 273 game in the After Hours Bail Bonds/Frank Stagg League at AMF Venice; and Emmanuel Rigas, a 150-over 711 in the Environmental A/C League at AMF Gulf Gate.
Also in the After Hours Bail Bonds/Frank Stagg League, Jim Rundell rolled three consecutive 200 scores for a triplicate series of 600. In other high-score reports from area centers:
- TREASURE LANES: Gary Toma 289-705, Gene Bussard 279, Corey Cyr 279, Joe Murray 277-753, Bob Pazur 277, Wayne Carr 270, Jim Aleshire 268-716, David Bird 268, Ed Burlison 267-706, Dave Jodoin 724, Tim Thompson 718, Billy Seymour 714, Robb Hessler 706, D.J. June 704, Jerry Weese 701; Jill Harper 246-639, Dawn Smith 244, Lillian Sitze 234, Jennifer Peacock 226-622, Debbie Baylor 226-605, Diane Kays 226-601, Dolores Meyers 605.
- BOWLAND PORT CHARLOTTE: Gary Krowka 280 and 267-711, Tony Wisenbarger 279, Jerry Jobst 277, Phillip Morris 276-704, Pooh VanEpps 276, Joe Poirier 268, Don Baldwin 266, Matt Carter 702, Jimmy Kuykendall 702, Eric Hall 702; Alexes Fry 248-654, Ashley Schwartz 235-671, Jan Bucklin 225-618, Jackie Wortinger 621.
- SARASOTA LANES: Todd Kirchman 286-727, Glenn Reed 280, Richard McLaughlin Jr. 279-770 and 269, Aaron Albritton 279-759 and 268-720, Dillon Eisenhauer 268, Kevin Mott 266, Robert Oden 738, Scott Hall 706; Cyndi Forgeur 228.
- AMF BRADENTON LANES: Jason Martin 279, Joshua Merkel 276, Larry Woodruff 276-728, Ned Chatt 267, John Thompson 721, Curtis Miccichi 718; Dawn Smith 234-600.
- AMF GULF GATE LANES: Steve Rocha 279, Chase Clark 279, Jerry Tucciarone Jr. 279, Todd Logan 276, Kevin Reichenbach 268.
- AMF VENICE LANES: Jeff Stapleton 280-757, Jess Carter 278-724, Matt Aiken 269, Rich Gagne Sr. 268; Dolores Meyers 248-652.
- ENGLEWOOD BOWL: Tony Clevenger 268-715, Guy Jones 267-700, John Stempien 703.
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