This year's Golden Empire United States Bowling Congress Mixed City Tournament, which took place the weekend of March 16-17 at Regency Lanes, brought together a variety of local bowlers. The event again featured two divisions--Senior and Adult, and it was our intent once again to hopefully give Senior bowlers a chance to compete against other senior bowlers and make them feel more comfortable when coming out to bowl in a tournament environment. Unfortunately, not many seniors took advantage and came out to support the event again this year.

We did, however, attract some of Bakersfield's best bowlers as well as some newer to our sport who just started bowling leagues and this was their first-ever tournament to compete in.

Adding to the excitement of the event, Rodriguez & Associates, which has been sponsoring teams and donating money to local bowling, came on board once again this year and donated $1,100 to this event's prize fund! And, local bowler, Ray Nearey, Jr., also came on board and donated an assortment of door prizes that were given away at the event. Our thanks to both Rodriguez & Associates and Nearey, Jr., for their support from all the bowlers who participated this year.

There were many high scores recorded with the majority on Saturday's squads. In the first Team squad, Nick Garcia posted the highest game of the tournament with a 298! Diz Francisco and Zack Newman followed with 279's, and then Kent Gray rolled a 266. Tracye Taylor had the high women's game of the day with a 234, followed by Cheryl Lamberson's 233.

High series of the day went to Zack Newman who shot a 784 in the Mixed Doubles event. Carlie Medina III shot a 720 in the Team event.

On the other end of the spectrum, new bowler Chris Ellington of Taft, with an entering average of 133, bowled a 192, as well as Jeff Ellington, also of Taft, who entered with a 139 average posted a game of 191.

Sunday's scores had Zack Newman posting the high game of the day with a 268 in the Mixed Doubles and finishing with a series of 761. But, the day belonged to the ladies with MaryAnn Barker shooting a nice 637 series in Mixed Doubles and Linda Perry a nice 642 (with high game of 232) also bowled in the Mixed Doubles event. Congratulations to all the winners!!

Adult Division

Mixed Team Event

1st -- Hollie Ellington, Sarah Needham, Mike Long, Jeff Ellington (3007)

2nd -- Hollie Ellington, Rene Adamo, Chris Ellington, Jeff Ellington (2933)

3rd -- Stephanie Blake, Veronica Davis, Gary Davis, Ray Nearey, Jr. (2891)

Mixed Doubles Event

1st -- Sandra Williams & Rudy Mil (1476)

2nd -- Hollie Ellington & Jeff Ellington (1463)

3rd -- Barb Francisco & Zack Newman (1454)

4th -- Sophia Cole & Matt Sanchez (1450)

5th -- MaryAnn Barker & Bill Bumacod (1429)

6th -- Stephanie Blake & Ray Nearey, Jr. (1427)

Senior Division

Mixed Team Event

1st -- Barb Francisco, MaryAnn Barker, Kent Gray, Diz Francisco (2921)

Mixed Doubles Event

1st -- MaryAnn Barker & Kent Gray (1462)

2nd & 3rd (tie) -- Michelle Dunn & Jack Dunn (1435)

Linda Perry & Mike Wafford (1435)

Youth Bowlers Samora, St. Laurent & Dunbach Qualify for Pepsi State

Congratulations to the duo of Tyler Samora and Paul St. Laurent, who both qualified for the Under 20 Boys division and Noah Dunbach, who qualified in the Under 15 Boys Division the weekend of March 16-17 competing in their Pepsi division finals at Valencia Lanes in Newhall.

All three will now move on to the Pepsi State Finals that will be held the weekend of May 4-5 at Classic Bowl in Daly City. Samora and St. Laurent bowl at AMF Southwest Lanes and Dunbach is from Regency.

Roy Jones wins third ABT title

The ABT (Amateur Bowlers Tour) came to Bakersfield again Saturday at Regency Lanes. They were here a couple months back and said they would be returning soon. And, that they did and the tournament brought more bowlers this time around. Congratulations to Champion Roy Jones who won $1,000 for his win! Other local bowlers who placed were Andrew Svoren, second ($150); Robert Mayo, third ($125); and Sophia Cole, fifth ($75).

Bowling Tech: Ball/lane match-up

We previously talked about different dual angle ball drillings. Now let's talk about matching up a given ball with a specific oil pattern.

There are probably half a dozen different styles of weight blocks on the market, starting with the pancake weight block which has very little or no track flare. Then, on to what we consider the mild flaring weight block which has a low differential rating (often times a pancake weight block) with a little flip block in the bottom of the ball. And so on through the scale of higher differentials come the medium-differential bowling balls, then onto the high differential of bowling balls as well as the asymmetrical medium and high differential weight blocks.

One thing for sure, if your bowling ball's hook ratio doesn't match up to the oil pattern, it makes the game a lot tougher and much less forgiving on ball reaction. For example, on a shorter pattern, considering no more than 33 feet of oil, a pancake weight block that doesn't flare will curve after it comes off the oil but not overreacting like a high differential ball would. And, on the opposite end of the spectrum, a long pattern considered 40 feet-plus heavy oil across the whole lane, a pancake weight block ball would probably never get to the pocket with any energy, versus a high-differential ball that would still roll pretty heavy because of its flaring pattern directionally changing the ball's direction towards the pocket!

Taking all of that into account, now throw some different reactive resign materials, the different finish on the top of that resin, whether it be polished or sanded and there becomes endless opportunities of ball reacting and confusion. Take notes of what works for you and talk to other bowlers asking for their reaction. Remember, one grade up or down on sandpaper or polish can make all the difference in the world of bowling!

Newman competes in annual Cal Open

Local standout, Zack Newman, traveled Lakewood to Cal Bowl on Saturday to compete in the annual Cal Bowl Open. Approximately 69 of the best bowlers in CA competed. Newman finished with +111 which put him in the Top 25. A little disappointed with his finish this year, he looks forward to more tournaments to compete in in the near future and chalks this one up as a serious learning experience.

Weekly Super Scores

As reported a couple bowling columns back, the outstanding trio team scratch score of 2283 that was shot by the team of Diz Francisco, Sean Ambrose and Zack Newman, in the Bakersfield Scratch Trio league was a little over 30 pins higher than the USBC record! Mike Mayo noticed this little factoid and brought it to our attention so we have submitted their score sheet for national recognition.

Bowling Community Calendar

Wed., Mar. 27: GEUSBC Board Meeting, 6:30 p.m., AMF Southwest Lanes.

Thurs., Mar. 28: Marge's Super Senior No-Tap Tournament, 1 p.m., Regency Lanes.

Sat., Mar. 30: Local BVL division winners bowl CUSBC Helen Duval BVL Classic, 3:30 p.m. squad, Double Decker Lanes, Rohnert Park, CA.

Sat., Mar. 30: San Joaquin Singles Tournament, AMF Sierra Lanes, Fresno. For info, call (559) 281-4444.

Mon., Apr. 1: Extended deadline to enter CUSBC 2013 Women's and Open State Tournaments. Entries at local centers or go to