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60 years at 2014 USBC Open for Florida Bowler Clinton Zavakos
Clinton Zavakos of Daytona Beach Shores, Fla., joined the 60-Year Club at the USBC Open Championships on Thursday. Clinton became the 18th bowler in the 111-year tournament history to reach this milestone.
The 78-year-old right-hander made his tournament debut at the 1955 USBC Open Championships in Fort Wayne, Ind., and has not missed an event since.
"Tonight was very special," said Zavakos, who received a plaque, chevron and engraved money clip to commemorate the achievement. "I really was looking forward to this year. I was nervous all day. For some reason, I was tense and nervous, even going into the first game. I have never been that way in my life."
A recent injury left Zavakos with several broken ribs, but it didn't stop him from making his milestone march down Center Aisle at the National Bowling Stadium. He also celebrated 50 years on the championship lanes at the NBS in 2004.
Zavakos has had several close calls throughout his tournament career and always hoped to match his father, Tom, who was a team champion in 1932.
"We gave eagles away," Zavakos said. "In California, we needed a small 900 in the last game and finished with a high 800. We gave one away in Detroit. I think we finished second twice in Team All-Events. I would have loved to win an eagle like my father."
After rolling sets of 488 in team, 453 in doubles and 451 in singles for an all-events total of 1,392, Zavakos now finds himself on the cusp of another milestone. He sits just 941 pins away from joining the 100,000-Pin Club. Through 60 tournaments, he has maintained a 185.5 lifetime average.
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