bowlingball.com continues our series of Editorial articles with special attention on bowling records. There are various types of records closely monitored in many sports such as hitting, fielding, and pitching records in baseball. In football, records such as most touchdowns scored by receivers, by running backs, most touchdown passes by quarterbacks, and so on are matters of public information. Bowling is no different in that records earmark the history of the game and those who have participated throughout the years.900
Some bowling records are notoriously publicized such as 900 series achievements, etc. It might be fun to check out an array of records in our sport. Through research, I have located many individual records, scoring and otherwise, and I wish to share some of them with an accompanying comment or two expressing my thoughts on given records. Here now are a few individual (not enough time or space to list team records) records you might find interesting:
1,635, Norm Duke (Peoria, IL, 1994); Dave Wodka (Wichita, KS, 1998) - This record by Norm and Dave is significant because for years, 6 game blocks were the staple of most qualifying rounds on the PBA National Tour. To average 272.5 for six games on six different pairs of lanes in serious competition is quite the accomplishment.
4,696, Norm Duke (Peoria, IL, 1994) - Many PBA Tour events used an 18 game qualifier event to determine which players made the match play finals rounds. An average of nearly 261 per game is an extremely impressive effort.
6,109, Pete Weber (Las Vegas, NV, 1996) - Many PBA Tour events used a 24 game qualifier such as in major championships or as the total number of match play finals games before determining the TV finalists. An average of 254+ is a super effort.
11,888, Patrick Allen (Wichita, KS, 2009)
13,540, Parker Bohn III (Las Vegas, NV, 1999)
14,924, Parker Bohn III (Akron, OH, 1999) - 48, 56, and 64 games have been formats used over the years for various PBA Tour events. The blistering pace of these scoring records is a testament to how talented these players are to have posted such lofty scores under pressure, in front of hundreds of spectators, and against some of the finest players ever to grace the lanes.
SELECT USBC RECORDS
Highest individual league average (minimum 66 games) - Men
261.7 Jeff Carter, Springfield, Ill., five-player league, 2000-01 - This is an amazing record for average in a league with 5 players per team. Jeff averaged a series total per week of 785. By the way, Jeff became a PBA Tour champion after this feat.
Highest individual league average - Women
244.4 Liz Johnson, Buffalo, N.Y., two-player league, 2004-05 - No surprise that Liz established this record as she was the first woman bowler to compete for a PBA Tour title on national TV.
Highest individual three-game series, Men
Jeremy Sonnenfeld (R), Lincoln, Neb., Feb. 2, 1997
Tony Roventini (L), Greenfield, Wis., Nov. 9, 1998
Vince Wood (R), Moreno Valley (R), Calif., Sept, 29, 1999
Robby Portalatin (L), Jackson, Mich., Dec. 28, 2000
James Hylton (R), Salem, Ore., May 2, 2001
Jeff Campbell II (R), New Castle, Pa., June 12, 2004
Darin Pomije (R), New Prague, Minn., Dec. 9, 2004
Robert Mushtare (R), Fort Drum, N.Y., Dec. 5, 2005
Robert Mushtare (R), Fort Drum, N.Y., Feb. 19, 2006
Lonnie Billiter Jr. (R), Fairfield, Ohio, Feb. 13, 2006
Mark Wukoman (R), Greenfield, Wis., April 22, 2006
P.J. Giesfeldt (R), Milwaukee, Dec. 23, 2006
Rich Jerome Jr. (R), Baltimore, Dec. 22, 2008
Chris Aker (L), Winnemucco N.V., Oct. 30, 2009
Andrew Teall (R), Medford, N.J., Nov. 2, 2009
Andrew Mank (R), Bellevue IL, March 18, 2010
William Howell III (L), Middletown, N.Y., Oct. 21, 2010
Matt Latarski (R), Newburgh, NY, Dec. 28, 2010
Bob Kammer Jr. (R), Crown Point, IN, Jan. 9, 2012
John Martorella Sr (R), Greece, NY, Apr. 12, 2012
Jimmy Schmitzer (R), Norco, CA, Apr. 20 2012
James Williams (R), Wakefield, RI, Apr. 16, 2013
Joe Scarborough (R), Lady Lake, FL, Apr. 21 2013
Todd James (R), Laurel, DE, Mar. 18, 2014
Amos Gordon (R), Ft Carson, CO, Apr. 11, 2014
Earon Vollmar (R), Toledo, OH, Jan. 19, 2015
Hakim Emmanuel (R), Brockton, MA, Feb. 19, 2015
Devid Sewesky (L), Plymouth, MI, Jan. 10, 2016
Dale Gerhard (R), Linden, PA, Jan. 12, 2016
Sean Osbourne (R), Cypress, TX, Nov. 22, 2016
John Buchanan III (R), Evansville, IN, Jan. 11, 2017
Sam Esposito (R), Lockport, IL, Feb. 3, 2017
For many years, Allie Brandt of NYC held the record at 886 only to be broken by Ray Orf of St. Louis, Mo. with an 890 series. Subsequently, Glen Allison of Whittier, Ca. rolled the first league series of 900 in the early 1980's in Southern California in a mixed league. To this day, the series was never sanctioned by the former ABC. Now the USBC has sanctioned all of these 900 listed series scores above on similar lane conditions and with the use of advanced technology bowling balls. Glen Allison used a Columbia plastic ball. It seems odd to me personally that the USBC never acknowledged Glen's score as the first sanctioned 900 series. He was, after all, a multiple PBA champion with certain credibility as a player.
890 Liz Kuhlkin (R), Schenectady, NY, Oct. 17, 2016
889 Erica Cutler, Fort Wayne, IN, Feb. 14, 2016
877 Jackie Mitskavich, Van Wert, Ohio, Aug. 10, 1997, Stephanie Hoover, Goshen, Ind. March 9, 2007
869 Missy Bellinder, San Diego, June 22, 2002
868 Carolyn Key-Reed, Buffalo, N.Y., March 4, 2003, Jennifer Elicker, York, Pa., March 18, 2009
- Congratulations to the ladies for recording these lofty scores.
900 Robert Mushtare, Fort Drum, N.Y., Dec. 5, 2005, Robert Mushtare, Fort Drum, N.Y., Feb. 19, 2006
889 Shane Tetterton, Sinking Springs, Pa., Sept. 24, 2006
888 Brentt Arcement, Kenner, La., Jan. 20, 1990
879 Jacob Peters, Decatur, Ill., April 27, 2005, Gary Faulkner Jr., Memphis, June 22, 2008
859 Samantha Santoro, Ephrata, Pa., Sept. 30, 2007
845 Samantha Santoro, Ephrata, Pa., May 3, 2007
Very impressive scoring by one and all. Making the USBC record book is an honor and an indication how the game and its players have progressed through the years. There are many, many more USBC records but I do not have the ability to share them all in this article. It might be fun, however, to segway into other bowling records which are lesser known but interesting reading nonetheless.
Here now are some ODD RECORDS which I felt might be worth noting:
The record for the highest score in a single game of backwards bowling is 199 and was set by Ashrita Furman (USA) at AMF Van Wyck Lanes, Richmond Hill, New York, USA, on 11 April 2007 - now here is a record I may soon forget.
Stephen Shanabrook, 24, physical therapy technician of Plano, bowled at The Plano Super Bowl, (which is open 24 hours), for five days and five hours (125 hrs) - setting the new world record for the longest tenpin bowling marathon. - I am certainly too lazy to try that endeavor.
Leagues, most years as president, Men, 48 Walter Alinger, Schenectady, N.Y., 1931-79, GEAA Shop
Leagues, most consecutive years as secretary, Men, 61 Emory Krauthoefer, Milwaukee, Nut, through 1969-70
Leagues, most consecutive years as secretary, Women, 52 Clara Logemann, Zach's on Friday League, Milwaukee, through 1991-92 - I salute these league officers for their service over many years; I would likely have found another hobby....lol.
Nine-pin counts, consecutive, 18 - Pete Bland, Bremerton, Wash., Oct. 28, 1976 - As someone with little patience, I would surely have left my bowling balls near the trash can on the way of of the center that night if I had 18 straight nine pin counts!
Well, we could continue on with more records in the sport of bowling but I think the point of all of this is to ask ourselves, are records made to be broken? We have heard this phrase many times over the years but some records cannot be broken, only tied. Case in point, the 300 game or the 900 3-game series. In bowling, are these stellar scores and averages really that critical to the success of the sport? For my money, the future success of bowling is not directly related to bowling records but it is nice to be acknowledged as part of history if someone we know happens to attain a record. Long live bowling and all of us who love the game.