Submitted by Drew Robertsonleft to right: Drew Robertson, Wes Foster, Tim Britton, DJ Shepard, Jason Higgins, Dan HowardDrew Robertson, well known bowling standout, set the Thurston County all time highest league average mark this season at 239.58 for 81 games.Robertson set this mark at Westside Lanes, in the Friday night Nip and Tuck mixed fours league. His teammates were Mike O’Malley Jr (211), Penny Jensen (205), and Tina Williamson (200).Robertson had this to say,”It was a blast. This team is arguably the best mixed team in association history. Mike can average in the 220’s (high of 831 last season), Tina and Penny held the highest two series at Westside for many years, over 750. Both can easily average over 200, just as they did this year. We only had 3 sets under 2400 (a 200 per person scratch average for 3 games) in 30 weeks. The worst set was 2317, a 194 per person average, that’s great shooting.”He went on to say, “I came out of the gate very fast this year, I was averaging 250 for the first 5 weeks. So I tried to impress on my teammates that every night they should be expecting to set a record. They laughed it off, but I was dead serious, this team had the potential to shoot a nationally recognized honor score. We came very close two nights, the 11th week, 11/15, then again on the 18th week, 1/10/14. The 11th week we shot 362 over, which is a 230 per person average; and the 18th week 331 over (227 per person). The national record is 702 over, a 258 average. For the single mixed 4 person game, the national record is 1110, a 277 average per person; we had a 1028 (257 avg) the second game of week 11”.Drew then explained how this record setting run started, which he explains was back in the Big Foot Little Foot summer parent/child league at Westside lanes last summer. “Well, because my daughter Sydney is on the Timberline Varsity Bowling team, we decided it would be a good idea to get together that summer and practice for her teams run at the state title the following season, she would be a senior. The blazers got second last year and they were committed to winning it this coming year (they ultimately finished second again behind Bremerton). Syd is an excellent bowler, but her average does not reflect it because she has a slow ball speed, the energy transfer to the pins is just not enough to carry the corners (10 and 7 pins), so instead of averaging in the two-teens, she is in the 170’s.”“I too was interested in throwing the ball harder after my research concluded that the optimal ball speed is around 16-17 ½ MPH. I usually throw my ball round 14 ½. So I was having the same problem as Syd, leaving to many corners, mostly the 7 pin. This was one of the factors that kept me 10 to 15 pins behind Rich Cook year after year in average.Whereas he would be around 235, perennially leading the association, and I would be 218 to 225.”“I also decided to bowl in a mixed fours league the following night that summer, where I was running a league format I originated called the Blind Draw Draft.” That league was on Wednesday night. “I decided I would throw a different ball each week (of about 8 to choose from), just for the fun of it.”Drew continued, “after just a few weeks I was averaging over 240 in both leagues by throwing the ball about 16.8 mph. In those weeks I found I had to adjust the shape of my push-a-way, one that allowed me to not loose my timing with the higher backswing and accelerating downswing. My push-a-way I’d used for the last 30 years did not allow my arm swing to keep up with my feet, so I was miss-hitting the ball at release. The push-a-way was too angular, that is straight out, then drop the ball straight down. I tried one that was more rolling, arcing, and circular. And there it was.“I began shooting many sets over 750. In 3 consecutive weeks with Syd, I shot 777 (207-290-280), 750 (206-300-244), 844 (300-300-244). This 844 was the perfect storm, I started with the first 30 strikes in a row. As I look back on it, that night, I had found the perfect combination of speed and revolutions that caused my Roto-Grip Outlaw ball to transfer maximum energy to the pins at the optimal angle of entry. Light hits shredded the rack, high hits tripped the six. Did not leave a seven pin. The string ended with a solid nine pin.” I’d come home and tell Heidi these scores and at first she was blown away. Then, after a couple months, low 700’s got a snide “what happened?” Drew said laughing.“I was able to play the lanes more straight up, with very little arc with the higher speed. So when the ball hit the friction part of the lane (the break point), the angle into the pocket was ideal.”“I’ve known for years that in order to perform at Rich Cook’s level, I would have to eliminate my bad nights, sets where I left 7 pins all night or not be able to find the pocket. 560 to 590 series would not work. This is where Fosters Pro Shop comes in. Wes Foster drills my equipment and it is important to have balls that complement each other. In my case, my ‘go to’ ball was the Roto-Grip Outlaw, which I bought used from Creed Clement over two years ago. My second ball was a Storm Sync I bought used from Wes. We discussed the proper layout, as two balls that come out of the oil at the same time is not a good combination. The Sync allowed me to stay in the pocket, with the right angle to carry the corners when the Outlaw could not. The other advantage of this combo was I did not have to guess where to stand when switching balls, typically, just a board and a half right with the feet, one board right with the eyes and I was stringing strikes again. Multiple nights I would use the Outlaw on one lane and the Sync on the other.”“Only twice did I use different balls because neither ball could get the corners out. A Track TKO Contender (a early arcing ball) and the Roto Grip Pearl Cell (a very late hooking ball). Again, they kept me from having a bad night.”“At this level, I am only missing the pocket 4-9 times in 36 shots. Many nights, every ball I threw could have been a strike. I had multiple ‘clean’ series (no opens at all). One night I left six 7 pins, that was it! I was averaging 9 out of 12 strikes per game.Since I had a bowling statistic App on my I-phone, I kept track most nights. The app showed that I left the 7 pin more times then all other spares shots combined, including splits.”“My low series all year was 631, for a total of only 3 sets under 650. Over half my sets were over 700, with 3 of those over 800 (816 high). Since last summer I’ve had 6 300 games, back to back twice, and 4 800 series.”“I also bowled in the Westside Mens league for Fosters Pro Shop. It was easily the strongest team in the association in memory. Wes Foster led off with a 216, DJ Shepard 217, Jason Higgins 210, Tim Briton 216, and me with 235. Dan Howard was our 6th man with a 220 (this team won the City team title at Tumwater Lanes in March). We were never under 3012 (200 per man average) all season and had 3 sets over 3500. The highest was in the league roll-off, a 3563 (237 per man). Our last 37 games of that league were over 1000”. Our lowest team game was a 950 (195 avg) in week 8.“One memorable night on this team was when Britton shot 300 the second game, then I had one the 3rd game. And at the same time a guy named Nate was on the pair next to us and shot 300 the same time I did. Wes got a video of it and posted it on facebook. It was cool. The next night I shot 300 the 1st game for my second back to back 300’s (31 strikes in a row) in 8 months.“Heidi (Drew’s wife for 21 years) and I went down to Reno on a vacation in October. It turned out that the National Storm Mixed Tournament was in town and it was open entry, so I had time to bowl one set of senior singles and shot 761, using a Storm Shift ball. I was in the lead when I left town but ended up getting 3rd for $390. A few other good showings was 2nd high qualifier in the Match Game Tournament behind Frank Deremer January, and finished 3rd in the Senior Olympia Open at Westside Lanes averaging over 245 for 10 games ($440) in April.”All league bowlers are aware of the possibility of a mid-season slump, where your scores suffer without any end in site. “Unfortunately, the slump started Sunday at the match game finals at Westside. I wasn’t clearing the thumb hole well all morning and could never get the ball up to the pocket. My next three sets on Thursday and Friday were from 609 to 663. So after league Thursday night I stayed late and threw a couple games with Caleb Hathaway.”“We discovered my hand position had migrated too far to the side of the ball and my wrist in a weak position, not to mention my ball had not been baked and surfaced since league started. After practicing I left my bowling balls at Fosters Pro Shop and Wes cleaned up the surface of the balls for the next night’s session (Friday). I went to a very strong hand position that created much more side spin thru the heads. I shot 245-245-268-758 that night and finished out the month of February with all 700’s including 765, 795, 816 and averaged 234 for 9 games at Tumwater Lanes in the city tournament. Slump ended”.Drew finished with this remark, “anybody who bowls knows this type of season cannot be done without a very consistent oil pattern and lane maintenance program. O’Malley Jr’s lane crew lead by Aaron Zoller, was very diligent in providing the same playable condition week to week. My hat is off to them”. Facebook34Tweet0Pin0
Olympia Receives Perfect 100 Point Rating on Recent LGBT Equality Index
Reclaimed Water: A Solution for Water Conservation and Sustainability
Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.