Scotch doubles offers an alternative to traditional bowling


Mike Hawkins Bowling Columnist


By Mike Hawkins

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

When I was younger, back in the 1900s, I would spend almost every Saturday night at Albemarle Lanes.

During high school and a few years after, I would mostly bowl by myself or with a few friends.

But. in my early adult years, I was introduced to another kind of bowling, Mixed Scotch Doubles, and that became my favorite game for a number of years. What made this game so much fun wasn’t the actual bowling, it was the people I was spending the time with.

We used to bowl blind Scotch doubles, meaning we randomly pulled names from an envelope to determine each doubles team. I had the chance to bowl with a number of different ladies, but without a doubt, my favorite was the late Rosetta Lewis.

Rosetta was the first lady of Albemarle Lanes to claim a 700 series, a 702, which remained the house high until Debbie Winslow tied the mark some years later. The distinction of lay’s high series at Albemarle Lanes now belongs to Winslow who once claimed a 722.

In Scotch Doubles, bowlers alternate shots throughout the game, not per frame. So, what would a game of Scotch doubles look like?

Bowler 1 would begin the game by rolling the first ball. If bowler 1 fails to strike, then bowler 2 would attempt the spare. The next frame, bowler 1 rolls the first ball again, with bowler 2 following. Bowler 1 is going to continue to roll the first ball of each frame, until he rolls a strike.

Once bowler 1 rolls that first strike, then bowler 2 is going to start rolling the first ball of each frame until, you guessed it, he rolls a strike. If bowler 1 never rolls a strike during a game, then bowler 2 is going to get ten spare attempts. To roll a perfect game, each bowler would have to roll six strikes.

How does a team strategically prepare themselves for who will roll first or second. That’s totally up to the two bowlers. The teams basically get the choice of who is going to roll the first ball. After that, it’s totally dependant of the results of the previous shot as to which partner will make the strike attempt of the next frame.

Being left handed, I used to like to try to partner with another southpaw, simply because of potential spare leaves. It’s kind of weird that lefties and righties leave certain spare combinations depending on the side of the lane and the angle being played.

I would love to see a group of bowlers bring back some Saturday night blind mixed, Scotch doubles. It is certainly a fun and exciting alternative to the traditional game of tenpins.

With the summer leagues wrapping up, here’s a recap of the top summer performances from each league.

Chris Farrell finished with the top average from Monday Night Trio with a 196.06, edging his teammate, Lake Krehel by a mere two-tenths of a pin! Crystal Owen topped the ladies in average with a little over a 158 clip. Crystal also had the league’s top ladies’ series with a 535 while Lake turned in a 706 for the top men’s’ set. Murdock Spencer and Katie Barefoot claimed the top games from Monda with tallies of 287 and 201 respectively.

Chris Farrell also claimed the high average award from Thursday Night Quartet with a 198 to go along with his 726 high series. Brittney Gaumond’s 168 average topped the ladies from Thursday night. Brittney also had the top series with a 619.

Rondell Christian’s 279 led the men’s individual games while Debbie Winslow topped all ladies with a 223 effort.

Connor Cafferello had the top bumper game of the summer for the guys, while Cheranne Hardison’s 200 was tops for the girls.

The youth Crazy-8 league recorded five perfect games with Ben Hawkins claiming three to go along with perfect outings from Bryce Hawkins and Christopher Vinson.

Speaking of the youth, there was a tremendous turnout for the youth leagues sign-up day this past Saturday. I was especially excited to see a number of new faces come in and sign up for our program.

There is still time and space for any other young people who want to be part of the youth league or the bumper program. Both leagues will have another sign-up period this Saturday from 9-12.

The adult league will be back in full form this week. Anyone interested in joining an adult league is urged to stop by during that league’s time to inquire about openings. There are leagues on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday evenings for men and women and women’s only leagues on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning.

Until next week, good luck and good bowling.