Dixon, Smith, Michaelson hit 700s to begin fall season
Larry Mason

August 31, 2004 - Darreyl Dixon, Mark Smith and Bruce Michaelson shot 700s this week, getting the fall/winter schedule off to a rousing start. Dixon shot not just one, but two 700s this week, a 729 on Thursday and a 709 on Sunday, while Smith had the highest 700 of the week, a 735, on Thursday. The trio of bowlers kept the Classic Lanes' string of uninterrupted 700s in tact in the process.

Dixon began the fall/winter league on Sunday evening by throwing a 729 series made up of games of 257, 194 and 278. He rolled 25 strikes, seven spares, and had two open frames. When the night concluded, Dixon had a 243 average, best in the league, ranked second on the high game list with his 278, and had the highest series, his 729.

On Thursday, Dixon took to the lanes and booked his second 700 of the week, this one a 709. Darreyl shot games of 228, 256 and 225. Dixon rolled 23 strikes, 10 spares, and had a single open frame, which was a split. After Thursday's action, Dixon held a 236 average, had the first back-to-back 700s of the season, and still held the second highest game of the week.

Mark Smith decided Thursday night would be a good time to hit his first 700 of the season, shooting games of 255, 235 and 245 to complete the evening with a 735 and claim the highest series of the week. Smith shot 23 strikes, eight spares and had one open frame, a single pin miss in the fourth frame of game two. Mark finished the evening with a 245 average, the center's top average, and the week's highest series. His highest game came on Sunday night when he shot a 256, which ties him with Don Gammill and Jesse Haggerty for sixth place on the center's high game list. Mark shot a 670 series on Sunday, giving him a 223 average in that league.

Bruce Michaelson joined the week's 700 club by shooting a 717 series on Thursday, rolling games of 245, 246 and 226. Bruce rolled 20 strikes, 12 spares, and didn't leave a single open frame. When the night was over, Bruce had a 239 average, third best on the high average list, ranked third on the high series list and had the center's eighth highest game, a distinction he shares with David Strain, Billy Pickett and Russ Nuss.

Over the course of the week, there were 41 series of 600 or better in addition to the four 700s we've already accounted for. The highest of the 600 series was a 683 thrown by Keith Ethridge on Thursday night. Keith shot games of 226, 277 and 180. One errant ball thrown in the fourth frame of game two, which accounted for eight pins, may have been all that stood between Keith and a perfect game. He did manage to complete the night with a 227 average, fourth highest for the week, the third highest game of the week, and the week's fifth highest series. Ethridge rolled 21 strikes, six spares and had three open frames, two of those coming in the 10th frame of games one and three. Had he spared those two frames, he would have had a 700, too.

Wes Campbell had the week's highest game, a 279, a score he shot on Sunday night in his first game. Things were looking pretty good at this point, but the bowling gods were ready to give in just yet. Wes lost his touch and could only muster a 173.

Still being the professional that he is, Wes bounced back in game three, shooting a 225 to give him a 677 for the evening. His average for the night was a 225, fifth highest for the week, as was his series. His 279 was the highest game of the week, and with just a little bit of luck, he might have had his ninth perfect game of his career. He left a nine pin on the first ball of the 10th frame; everything else was a strike. Wes and Keith, who bowl together on Sunday, threw the same number of strikes, the same number of spares, and had the same number of open frames.

Koy Cline hit a 675 series on Thursday, firing games of 209, 277 and 189. Any kind of third game would have given him his first 700 of the season. Still, his 277 second game put him third on the high game list, where he joins Ethridge, and his 225 average ties him with Wes Campbell for fifth place on the high average list. Cline's 675 holds sixth place on the high series list.

Michael Carter and Tommy Fletcher both shot 671s on Thursday night, with Michael shooting 256, 215 and 200 for his, while Tommy rolled games of 222, 244 and 205 for his. They were followed closely by Ricky Steele's 666, Clinton Cline and Haggerty's 660s, Nuss' 659, Whitney's 656, and Vincent Smith's 652.

Speaking of Haggerty, he not only shot a 660 on Thursday, but also shot a 625 on Tuesday. He is averaging 220 on Thursday and 208 on Tuesday. This from a young man who entered Tuesday and Thursday action with a 185 average in both leagues. He shot 256, 201 and 203 on Thursday and shot 191, 231 and 203 on Tuesday. I'd hate to think what he could do if he took the sport seriously. He ranks eighth in average with his 220, where he is tied with Clinton Cline, is sixth on the high game list at 256, and holds 10th on the high series list with his 600, where he is again tied with Clinton Cline.

For the first time in a very long time, a lady broke the 600 barrier at the center this past week. Debbie Carter recorded games of 223, 221 and 167 to complete the evening's play with a 611 series and a 203 average.

Linda R. Henry, bowling off of a 154 average, put together games of 148, 247 and 187 to garner a 582 series and a 194 average for the evening on Monday night. Her 247 was the high game for the ladies through the week, and, in fact, is the eighth highest game on the high game list. Her score is the highest game shot by any woman so far this season. Her new average is a 174. Linda's 582 was second only to Debbie's 611.

Billy Pickett had to stop bowling last season due to a very painful shoulder injury. He hasn't thrown a bowling ball in about a year's time. On Thursday, Mr. Pickett returned to the lanes and promptly got back into the swing of things, throwing a 604 series, setting a 201 average to begin league play. Billy shot games of 159, 246,and 199. Not a bad night's work.

Others who bowled well this week included: Tarry Davidson (648), David Strain (647), Nathan Crist (645), Joe Kirkpatrick (644), Turk Morgan (643), Bo Duncan (642), Nick Painter (638), Steve Edwards (635), Alan Roberts (634), Harold McClure (630), and Ray Howser, David Gholson and Jason Keller (629).


Larry Mason writes a weekly column on the bowling action at Classic Lanes. His column appears on Tuesday.

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