Managing your energy on the lanes


Mike Hawkins Bowling Columnist


By Mike Hawkins

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Last week my family kicked up our feet at my mom’s house and like millions across America, settled in to watch the Home Run Derby on television. Being a Braves and Cubs fan, I witnessed my two choices, Freddie Freeman and Kyle Schwarber fall to the eventual champion, Bryce Harper.

While I wasn’t crazy about the final outcome, I was highly impressed with Harper’s towering shots as they left Nationals Park, but what I was really impressed by was the seemingly lack of effort Harper and the other seven competitors displayed while hitting a total of 221 homeruns during the two-hour competition.

I see the same thing when watching some of the world’s best bowlers competing.

They seem to repeat shot after shot while showing little to no emotion.

Now, I’m not talking about an occasional temper tantrum, we… I mean they face occasionally. I’m talking about letting the emotions run down their sleeve on every single shot.

The truth is, they all feel the emotions of high and low moments during their games. The difference between them and the average league bowler is the pro simply knows how to manage the stressful situation a little better.

Just like you and I both enjoy stringing a few strikes together, so does the pro.

The difference is our palms start getting sweaty and we start thinking about the big game we’re going to roll, or the disaster waiting around the corner, by about the third or fourth frame.

As many of you know, in a previous life I was a teacher.

How a bowler manages his physical, mental and emotional energy reminds me of the explanation I used to give to students and parents about their child’s struggle with reading comprehension.

I used to explain that everyone has a certain amount of energy.

If the student is draining a great deal of energy while trying to work through a difficult word, then there’s minimal energy remaining to focus on the comprehension of what is being read.

The same theory applies with bowling.

If the bowler is burning unnecessary energy, whether physical, mental, or emotional on the first seven or eight shots of a game, what’s left for the end of the game, night, or tournament?

A couple of guys whom I’ve always known to maintain a pretty even keel of emotion while bowling are Stephen Marshall and Denwood Williams which is why it came as no surprise to me to see them atop the high score report from last Monday night, shooting 213-626 and 243-620 respectively.

Some other guys who added some nice performances last Monday night were Troy Brickhouse (11-strikes, 263 game), Chris Farrell (212-602), Will Evans (242), James Perales (221), Lake Krehel (214) and William Swinson (210).

Patsy Sanders again topped the ladies from last Monday night with a 178-480.

She was joined in the lead by Brittney Gaumond’s 177-470 and Katie Barefoot’s 181-427.

Thursday Night Quartet witnessed some pretty big scores last week as well, led by Lake Krehel’s 234-660, Chris Farrell’s 232-653, and Rondell Christian’s 242-600.

Stephanie Winslow’s 226-528 paced the ladies last Thursday night, followed by Debbie Winslow’s 182 game, Patsy Sander’s 452 series, and Amie Wallace’s 177 game.

Topping the bumper Crazy-8 bowlers were Tristan Hardison’s 173, Connor Cafferello’s 140, Cheyanne Hardison’s 138, and Kenzie Vanscoy’s 72.

Top adults on the bumper league were Val Hadison (203) and Elizabeth Adams (176).

Bryce Hawkins had a series he won’t soon forget while prebowling for this week’s Crazy-8 youth league.

Bryce opened with the front 11 and a final ball 7 for a 297 during his first game before running the sheet for his first 300 of the Crazy-8 Summer League.

He finished with an 840 series.

Ben Hawkins’ 267-729 and Thomas Adams’ 228-626 closed out the youth guys this past weekend.

Top Crazy-8 girls were Elizabeth Scaff (175-467) and Tabby Vanscoy (111 game).

Top adults in the Crazy-8 league were Gary Nistler (227-606) and G.S. Pinner (197-514).

Until next week, good luck and good bowling.