Game 1: 203
Game 2: 196
Game 3: 160
Week Avg: 186
Season Avg: 191(.98)
The backends proved to be drier than they had been in recent weeks, which allowed for a bit more hook into the pocket. This was unique to our league, though, as the pair next to us complained all night about the oil on their lanes. I found a comfortable line during practice and felt confident heading into the night.
The first game started out with a double. High and light pocket hits were carrying, but I sliced through the rack leaving the 1-2-10. I left the 10-pin to open and then followed up with a turkey. I stayed clean the rest of the way and finished the game with a 203.
The transition game started out alright, but I missed a 2-pin early in the game. I started to have difficulty getting a solid pocket hit, resulting in a lot of 2- and 9-pins depending on whether I hit high or light. I stayed clean the rest of this game as well and finished up with a 196.
The third game featured no strikes, but it wasn't for a lack of trying. Several good pocket hits left the 10-pin, but for the most part I couldn't finesse the ball into the pocket like I had in the first game. I would hit high and make an adjustment, but then the ball would skid out toward the gutter and I would hit light or the ball would just seems to skid through the rack. I missed the 1-2-4-10 in the third frame and chopped the 6-10 in the eighth frame. I needed 19 pins in the tenth frame to win in the brackets for the third straight week and 11 pins to win the game. I left the 2-5 on my first ball and the spare shot went a little further left than I would have liked, but it stuck. So now I needed to keep it on the lane to win the game and 9 pins to win brackets. I came in high again and left the 4-8, finishing with a hard fought but disappointing 160 and a 559 series. We won the game and I split the bracket money.
During the last game I was faced with a choice: keep my team in the game by playing the safe line that wouldn't result in any crazy leaves and try to work the ball into the pocket for some strikes, or try a completely different line that could be either high reward or a disaster. I chose to play the safe line because my team had lost the first two games and we needed to come out of the evening with some points. The decision turned out to be a good one for the team because we won the game, but my individual score suffered because of it. There is most definitely a difference between team and individual bowling, and I hope these points help us out at the end of the quarter.
The drastic change I was thinking about making was to move my body and mark left a few boards and rely on the dry backends to snap my ball into the pocket. I would have been able to do this because I started experimenting with playing the inside of the ball. Essentially, this is when your hand is on the side of the ball facing your body with your palm facing outward throughout your backswing rather than being behind it with your palm facing the pins. This provides more revs and gets the ball to snap a bit more. Early on I was finding that this caused the ball to skid a bit further down the lane before ripping left at the last moment. I think that by the third game I could have found a line more through the middle that would have worked, but it might have taken a few valuable frames to locate the line. The high reward would have been a few strikes, but the risk was leaving washout after washout, slicing through the rack leaving 1-2-10 combinations like I did in the first and third games.
I've got a quick turnaround this week as I am going to throw a few games Friday afternoon on my day off. I am banking these as pre-bowl games because I might miss league on April 5th, so I won't be able to experiment like I would would have liked to. Let's hope the lanes are kind.