Well that is more like it!

After a couple of tough weeks of gutting out scores to keep my average at 180, tonight was a nice solid average jump!  The weird part, despite rolling a 634 series, it felt like it could have been much higher! But I can give a break down of that later, as for right now, here are the quick hits on the night.

Even before getting to the bowling alley, I had a confident feeling about the night! Can’t pinpoint exactly why but just felt good and when practice started it reaffirmed my feeling. During practice the pins were falling left and right, and not just for me but everyone in our group. I knew at that point that if I were to miss a high series was going to be due to missing an adjustment or just falling apart. I stayed away from both!

Game 1 started with 3 single pin spare opportunities in the first 4 frames (with a strike mixed in, just to make it interesting). Converted 2 out of 3 leaving only one 10 pin but that miss was my only single pin miss of the night and one of only 3 opens on the night. Finally settled down and had 5 strikes from the 5th frame on to close with a 205. Good shots throughout, but not stringing together more than a double hurt the opportunity for a higher game, but a solid start to the evening.

The second game started like the first, a solid pocket shot that left a ringing 10 pin, which I picked up. After a bad spare shot in the second frame (only open of the game) put together a double, back to back spares, and closed with 6 strikes in a row. Only blemish of those strikes would be the brooklyn I threw to start the streak in the 7th frame (only brooklyn of the night) but on a overall solid night, I’ll take a brooklyn as a lucky shot. Finished the 2nd game with a 234 which ties my 3rd highest game of the year and the series was already only my third series that had at least 2 200 games. You can see progress being made in front of your eyes!

The third and final game I had to earn a little more, good shots but many spare chances to be had. Just wasn’t able to string together strikes as the game went on but I was converting the spare chances I had. Everything seemed to be going great, another 200 game was on tap and then the 10th frame came along. Horrible shot (threw to wide) that never came back and left me with a nasty looking, 6 pin split. Didn’t covert it (at least picked up the 3 that were together) to finish the game with a 195. The last frame was my only split of the night and by far my worst shot as well, but I’m choosing to focus on the 634 series rather than one bad shot! Additionally, my team won 3 out of the 4 possible points and improved our 3rd place high handicap series score by 3 pins. Good night by the whole team, not just me!

Some definite growing opportunities from the night but first, here are some stats from last night:

  • Average at the beginning of the night: 180.1
  • Average at the end of the night: 181.8
  • Spare percentage for the night: 78.6% (11/14)
  • Single pin spare percentage for the night: 90.0% (9/10)
  • Strike percentage for the night: 57.6% (19)

Now, I’m smarting enough to know that despite a solid night, there are still things that need to be worked on. For example, if I was more consistent (same shot every time, same mark, etc) I very possibly could have been in the 700’s. The pins were just falling that way last night where some more consistency would have resulted in a even higher score. I also made some slight adjustments but I’m still learning how to make my adjustments properly, that includes everything from the approach to where the ball leaves the deck. I mention this because while on this journey, I also hope to learn and understand this game more, not just score better. I had someone last night ask me where my ball was leaving the deck when I was leaving my 10 pins and I wasn’t sure. I have never taught myself to keep an eye on such things so I usually see a 10 pin but not always how to correct it. Those are things I hope to get better at and work on as I progress on this journey.

Last night was a good night and is giving me some much needed confidence. Not that the last 3 weeks were poor (was still averaging right at 180) but I’m striving for better scores than just 180. Another item I keep reminding myself is all of my teachings currently are from online videos on comments left on the site (thanks by the way to those that leave remarks here and there). At this point, I haven’t had any formal coaching (anyone looking to help me out, email me at [email protected] or [email protected]) so anything I may be doing wrong, I haven’t had a second set of eyes to catch it as of yet. I will hang my head high though that I’m getting to where I hope to go, step by step, day by day. As I’ve said over and over, this journey isn’t going to take 1 or 2 weeks, it’s going to take time but I’m on board for the ride!

Last night was definitely a positive step forward on my journey to becoming a better bowler! Practice sessions to come this weekend and back at it again next week striving to have my average increase again (need a 558 to increase to a 182) so positives are all around. Hope to have some good news equipment wise in the very near future so keep a look out for that next week!

One foot in the right direction, and until next time….keep on rolling!