A lot has happened in the last 4 weeks and not all of it has been good.
Let’s start with the TAT in Las Vegas. This was my first time out in Vegas and the weather out there was beautiful! It was nice to get out of the Ohio winter for a change. I was able to get out on to the Vegas strip as well as eat at some new restaurants with some great friends! I also met some amazing people that showed me just how great our bowling community really is! This was also a week that was made possible by Harvey Johnson. I could never thank him enough for that! Also, congrats to Alex Aguiar for absolutely dominating the week and taking home the $20,000 first place prize!
As for the bowling, it was very up and down. I had some days that I bowled really well and some days that were a bit of a struggle. For the trip, I brought out an arsenal that consisted of 2 Covert revolts, a Sigma Sting, a Primal Rage, a Tribal, and a spare ball. The Revolts got the most use, but I did find a lot of instances where the Fusion Pearl coverstock on the Sting and Primal Rage came in handy. The big difference from the west coast to the east coast is that out west, they like to play the fresh left to right and open up the lanes early on. What this does it create a different transition then I am used to. The only good thing that came out of that week was I will be able to be in the “Returning Non Finalist” division next time I bowl…sadly.
I had a 3 day stay back home and then Zeke Bayt and I left for our 10 day excursion to the TNBA Reed-Hawthorne in Cleveland and the USBC Masters in New Jersey. I had a very par weekend in Cleveland as I was having trouble turning my decent games into great games. I was however able to bowl some big games down the stretch to jump into the casher’s cut and finish with a 27th place finish. Considering how I was executing, that’s not a bad finish and gave me a small amount of confidence going into the Masters, especially since I was going to be able to start using the new Venom Shock. During the TNBA, the Covert Revolt was the only ball going down the lane as I used the pin down on the fresh and the pin up on the transition/burn. Congrats to Vernon Peterson for notching another big title onto his ever growing resume!
After making the long 8 hour drive from Cleveland to New Jersey, with a slight pit stop in Lamar, PA, it was time for the Masters week! I had a 2 hour practice session on Monday and most of the Motiv team was on that practice squad. I found a few lines that I liked with several different balls. My first squad on Tuesday was on the burn. I had found a zone on the outside during practice that I thought would hold up through at least the first 2 games, but it had gone away in a hurry and I managed to limp to a 190-plus game. After that I jumped in with the Venom Shock (#purpleball) and was able to find a great line to the pocket, as long as I made sure to keep up with the transition. I finished the block at 78 over with a 278 shot in game 3.
My next 2 blocks were on the fresh and I just could get anything going. I was committed to playing right as I felt that’s where my best shot was, but I just couldn’t seem to get anything going. I was executing poorly and didn’t catch many breaks in order to loosen up my arm swing. My best look was with a trio of Covert Revolts (Pin down w/hole, pin down no hole, pin up w/hole). They gave me strong mid-lane read without overreacting at the break-point.
After those 3 tournaments, I knew the changes I was making in my game weren’t going to cut it against the best in the world. So I went back to what I was doing and tried to make some smaller changes, adjustments that would help me maintain my leverage and balance going into my release. The first tournament I tried it in was the Erie $4k Scratch Classic, a tournament that I finished 2nd in the previous year. I was noticing a big change in how my first ball was looking. It was coming off my hand great and I was able to keep my balance and leverage more easily! The probably was it had affected my spare shot in that the ball was getting off my hand too fast. I ended up finishing in the 9-16 spot and created a solid platform in which to build upon. Congrats to Eric Cornog for winning on a very demanding condition!
I put in the work on Monday and Tuesday morning and shot 802 Tuesday night at league with the Venom Shock! That ball game me a backend motion that no one else on the pair was able to create!
Then on Thursday, I put together of a set of 844 with my favorite pin down Covert Revolt! This ball is the best benchmark ball I have ever thrown!
Now for the updates! I am looking into creating a website where I will be posting my blogs, doing arsenal building videos, as well as other tips and suggestion videos. There will also be sections where I do tournament recaps, extended ball reviews and breakdowns, along with many more features!
Another update is that I have picked up a workout regimen to get my body in better shape to bowl the longer formats and days. I have noticed that my legs and back were starting to strain on the longer days, so that’s something I am looking at improving! Stay tuned for a good deal of changes while I continue Furthering the Lanes!