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Sarasota-Manatee-Charlotte County bowlers have choice of many February tourneys

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Tournaments, tournaments, and more tournaments.

Indeed, the month of February will offer a wide variety of tournaments for bowlers in the Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte County area, including several events sponsored and conducted by the Sarasota-Manatee County USBC Bowling Association and the Southwest Florida USBC Bowling Association.

The first scheduled event takes place this weekend. On Saturday (Feb.8), a senior scratch sweeper will be held at AMF Gulf Gate, and on Sunday (Feb. 9), the Bill Wenzel Valentine Handicap Mixed Doubles is set at Sarasota Lanes, and this article will summarize and provide information on other tournaments to be held later in the month.

Unlike the Sarasota-Manatee association, the Southwest Florida association will have a men's-only tournament, in addition to Open and women's championships. The SWFUSBC men's tourney will be run in conjunction with the women's-only event on the same weekend at Pin Street in Fort Myers.

Prospective entrants should jot down the dates, times and places, and following are capsule summaries of each tournament, with links provided to official entry blanks.

  • SENIOR SCRATCH SWEEPER: A scratch sweeper, open to senior bowlers of age 50 and up, will take place at AMF Gulf Gate Lanes on Saturday (Feb. 8). Entry fee is $45, check-in will begin at 11 a.m., and practice will start at 12:15 p.m. There will be three games of qualifying on "house shot" lane conditions, and the initial cut will be 1-in-2. Tournament flyers are available in area centers, or for additional information, call tournament director Chuck Souzer at (941) 320-4584.
  • BILL WENZEL VALENTINE DOUBLES: With all doubles teams consisting of one male and one female, squad times will be at 1 and 4 p.m. on Sunday (Feb. 9) at Sarasota Lanes. Entry fee is $40 per team, and optional scratch singles -- using scores rolled in doubles -- will be available, both scratch and handicap (900 percent of 220), at a cost of $10 each. Early entries are encouraged, in part because walk-ins will be charged an additional $5 expense fee per bowler. To access an entry blank, click here.
  • SOUTHWEST FLORIDA WOMEN'S: The SWFUSBC Women's Championships are scheduled Feb. 15-16 at Pin Street in Fort Myers. Entry fee is $15 per woman per event, plus optional scratch singles and doubles at $10 each and optional scratch and handicap (90 percent of 220) all-events at $6 each. Team squads will be at 1 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday, and singles-doubles squads are set for 5 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Entries close on Feb. 10, and to view or download an entry blank, click here.
  • SOUTHWEST FLORIDA MEN'S: The SWFUSBC Men's Championships will run in conjunction with the women's tourney on Feb. 15-16 at Pin Street. Entries are $20 per man per event, plus optional team, singles and doubles scratch competition at $10 each, and optional scratch and handicap (90 percent of 230) all-events at $6 each. Team action will start at 1 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday, with singles and doubles at 5 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Entry deadline is Feb. 10, and to check out an entry blank, click here.
  • 700-PLUS TOURNAMENT: Competition will begin at noon on Sunday, Feb. 16, at AMF Venice, and entry fee will be $20 per bowler per event. Scratch singles is open to all SMCBA members who have rolled a certified three-game scratch series of 700 or better, while handicap (90 percent of 220) singles is open to SMCBA members who have never rolled a 700. The top five players in scratch singles will enter a final-five stepladder rolloff at 3 p.m. Virtual handicap doubles will feature one SMCBA member who has rolled a 700 series within the past four years and one SMCBA member who hasn't. A player must bowl singles to enter virtual doubles, and multiple doubles entries will be permitted. To view or download an entry blank, click here.
  • SOUTHWEST FLORIDA YOUTH: The SWFUSBC Youth Championships are scheduled for Feb. 22-23 at Treasure Lanes in Port Charlotte. Entry fee is $15 per bowler per event, plus optional scratch and handicap (90 percent of 200) all-events. Doubles and four-player teams may consist of any combination of boys and girls, and competition will be in six average classifications. Team squads will be at 1 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday, with singles and doubles at 5 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Entries close Feb. 20, and to view an official tournament blank, click here.
  • SMCBA OPEN CHAMPIONSHIPS: The tournament will take place on the weekends of Feb. 22-23 and March 1-2 at AMF Venice, with Saturday squad times at noon and 4 p.m., and only one squad, at 1 p.m., on each of the Sundays. Entry fee is $20 per bowler per event, plus optional all-events, both scratch and handicap (90 percent of 220), at $5 each. The event will be contested in two average categories, as follows: five-player team, Division A (800-over) and Division B (879-under); doubles, A (352-over) and B (351-under); and singles, A (176-over) and B (175-under). Multiple participation is available in team only, and no more than two individuals who have entered together may bowl more than once. Entry deadline is midnight, Feb. 20, and to check out an entry blank, click here.
  • PROVE IT CHALLENGE: The tenth in the series of Prove It Scratch Challenges is scheduled to be held at AMF Gulf Gate Lanes on Saturday, Feb. 22. Entry fee will be $55, and optional brackets ($5) and Nassaus ($10) will be available. Check-in will be from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., and practice will start at 1:15 p.m. Complete information, rules and other pertinent data can be found on the tournament's Web site, which can be accessed by clicking here.

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