There are many ways to describe the third Capital City Shootout this past weekend at All-Star Lanes, but one word can be used above all others: success.
Over two days, 115 bowlers from four states — and this year a bowler from Singapore who is a freshman at Tulane — competed on four different and difficult bowling oil patterns for a total of $3,431 in scholarships.
Chad Conard of Baton Rouge captured his first major title, coming from the losers bracket in the 12-player competition in the Under-20 boys division to defeat Max Oterling of Slidell twice, including with a 414 total in the final two-game match. Conard won a $625 scholarship, and Oterling received $475. The other scholarship winners in the division were Cory Ledet ($325), William Curtis ($225), Jason Dupre ($165), Austin Bertrand ($115) and Tyler Lewis ($53).
On the girls U20 side, Keondra Eaton won both summer classics in Louisiana — the match games in July and the Capital City Shootout — by going through the six-player finals undefeated for the $500 scholarship. Runner-up Michelle Ng earned $270, while third went to Mikhela Bakle ($150) and fourth to Jessica Quebedeaux ($53).
In the Under-15 divisions, Givin Wright came through the losers bracket to win by prevailing twice in the finals — first by two pins and then by five to take the $500 scholarship. Jordan Coose was second ($170) and Austin Cortez third ($53). On the girls side, Bailee Chapman was the top qualifier and went undefeated to take the $500 scholarship over Sara Howell-Floyd ($107). Kelsi Stegall was third ($50).
The intriguing part of the event is that qualifying’s nine games are divided into three-game segments on three different World Tenpin Bowling Association oil patterns of 35, 39 and 44 feet. All have different characteristics besides distance — like the 39-foot pattern, which is gutter to gutter with heavy oil (the lane graph shows very heavy) on the front end.
That made it a whole new ballgame for many of the competitors, and those who could consistently stay out of trouble and make spares moved past their competitors right and left. The patterns are named after cities — and the 39-foot Seoul pattern had no soul, in my opinion.
Sunday’s final was on a 38-foot pattern; its flat spots of oil across the boards made adjustments critical as games wore on. Those who could keep making spares and get a couple of strikes got to the top.
It’s really what makes this tournament over Labor Day weekend a perfect complement to the state match games in July. The match games are bowled on basic house conditions that, over the past 10 years, meant high scores with lots of strikes are a must. The Capital City Shootout, on the other hand, challenges every bit of your bowling knowledge and spare-shooting ability. The match games are a tournament where it’s “all the pins you can get.” The Capital City Shootout is “get all the pins you can.”
This is a well-run tournament that is as nerve-wracking for the spectators as it is for the bowlers. All weekend, a group of us would sit there and watch shots and speculate what could be done, how it could be done and, in a couple of cases, if it could be done.
My final thought is this: We are in a sort of transition period when some top youth bowlers have gone up to adult play in the past 12 to 15 months. We saw some new bowlers make waves in this tournament, and it appears there is a lot of talent out there to watch the next few years. I look forward to another high school season and to see some of the women head to the lanes at Tulane, Louisiana Tech, Southern and Grambling.
Bowl For Hope
Bowl For Hope is the Boys Hope Girls Hope of Baton Rouge’s annual fundraiser to help provide housing, food, clothing, educational assistance and scholarships for young men and women in the program. The event is Oct. 4-5 at Circle Bowl.
One of the main objectives of the program is to work with young people as early as middle school and help them not only complete high school but get admitted to and ultimately graduate from college.
For more information, contact John Daniel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Honor roll notes
Greg Snee led the scoring in the last reporting period in Baton Rouge with a 754 (260), while Mary Mansur led the scoring at two houses, shooting 748 (277) at All-Star and 691 (278) at Circle Bowl. In the senior leagues, Bob Peterson had the best men’s score of 592, while Jeanette Conner led the women at 574. Frederic Taylor was best in the youth leagues at 648 (256).
We’ll talk more about it next time, but entry blanks are out for the city tournaments, which will be held at All-Star Lanes on Nov. 1 and 2 and Nov. 15 and 16. There will be no tournament play Nov. 8 and 9.
We are back with you Sept. 16 and, until then, good luck and good bowling.