Neil Gaspard won a Lafayette showdown Sunday to take the March edition of the BR Bowling Singles at Circle Bowl and capture the $3,593 first prize from a field of 497.

Gaspard, who entered with a 161 average, posted a 186 average for 16 tournament games to get the win, taking the final match from Lafayette’s Derwin Pitre, a 222 average bowler who posted a fine 230 average for the 16 games he bowled over the weekend.

Pitre won $1,796.50 for second place.

Advancing to the semifinals was Mobile, Alabama’s Nickey McClantoc and Marcus Taylor Alexandria, earning $754.53, while in the quarterfinal round were Robert Atkins of Alabama, Casey Bragg of Lake Charles and locals Fergy Ferguson and Brian Yoches, with those spots at $503.02 each.

Area bowlers in the round of 16 were Brian Bodenheimer of New Orleans, Dylan Doiga of Baton Rouge, Barry Doyle of Baton Rouge, Richard Loudenslager of Baton Rouge, David Moragas of Slidell, Sam Joseph of Lafayette and Sumner Taylor of Baton Rouge all getting $287.44.

Next action in this long-running series of events comes up in July at Circle Bowl.

Prep playoffs

I can’t believe the prep bowling season is set to move into the playoff phase and that all begins on Monday at All-Star Lanes in Baton Rouge with the Regional Round.

On Monday at 3:15 p.m., seed 3-6 will bowl on the girl’s side, while seeds 2-15 in the Boys/Open Division will bowl. That will lead to two rounds on Wednesday (March 25) in which the qualifiers for the Baton Rouge-New Orleans Bi-Regional will be determined.

That bi-regional event will be on Tuesday March 31st also at All-Star Lanes in Baton Rouge. The State Semifinals and Finals will be contested at Acadiana Lanes in Lafayette in April.

Women’s state

If you want to see the entire list of winners and placings from the women’s state tournament in Lake Charles, check out the website at Louisianausbcwba.com for the results.

But a few highlights from the event include the Dangerous Dames from Baton Rouge winning scratch team with a 2,546 four-person total. Mary Mansur had the best scratch series in the event at 749 and Mansur and longtime partner Kim Springfield did it again, winning the scratch doubles with a 1,380 total. Brenda Procell of New Orleans was the handicap singles winner at 815 and Brandy Sanderson won the scratch all-events with a fine nine-game total of 2013.

A personal note

Please allow me to join a lot of people in this part of the state who have already offered condolences to the family of New Orleans bowling official Vic Bruno who passed away since our last column. I almost feel that “personality” may be a better word for Vic, who for almost three decades was an integral part of the Louisiana state junior bowling board, much of that as president.

A lot of things have changed over the years in youth bowling and some of that is for the better I think, but there is a lot of it which in its infancy had Bruno’s stamp on it. I was honored to be a part of the group of board members that worked under him and to say he shaped events is putting mildly and I mean that in a good way. He believed in junior bowlers. He loved to watch them have success as we all did and he had the belief that some of us who were older youth bowlers could move up to be the directors of the future.

We worked hard at tournaments, but we also had fun times together as well. Vic made sure of both. He was the right president for the times and I think he made all of us who worked with him the right group to lead youth bowling at that time. I’ll never forget him and anytime I’m at a youth event it always seems a Vic Bruno story-fest will break out and that’s the way I’ll always remember those years. RIP Vic.

Honor roll notes

Sumner Taylor led the scoring with a 789 and a 270 game, while Tristan Senegal had a 730 with a 278 game for the women. The youth bowlers were led by Nicholas Stevens with a 629 and a 257 game, while some high scores were posted by senior bowlers with Gary Zeringue on the men’s side posting 682 (279) and Lynette Broussard leading the senior women with 616 (223).

Richard Roe had a perfect 300 game while senior bowling Earlene Hollihan was 50 pins over average. Jerome Johnson rolled a 251 game, 112 pins over average and Gil Penton had a first 600 series.

We’ll start our coverage of high school bowling playoffs next week and our next column will be in two weeks on the day of the Bi-Regionals, March 31. Until then, good luck and good bowling.