Splits, spares and strikes: Salminen, Windahl add names to 300 list

Time to do a little housekeeping today, all because so many bowlers are reaching perfection or just missing it.

I don’t always hear about every perfect 300 game if someone doesn’t talk to me about it during my usual weekly league nights at Red Rock Lanes in Ishpeming or Superior Lanes in Marquette, but eventually words filters down to me.

So here goes:

There’s been a pair of unrecognized 300s, at least in the this space, the most recent by Scott Salminen of Negaunee on Dec. 13 in the Friday 800 Mixed at Superior.

Salminen, 36, got his the second game in a 737 series that began with 193 and ended with 244 using his 15-pound Roto Grip Defiant Edge reactive resin ball, one he recently had drilled out by Superior pro shop operator Jeff Miller.

“I just thought it was time to try something new,” Salminen told me a few weeks ago, adding he couldn’t get his strike hits to carry the first game before all 10 pins suddenly started falling.

When he got the big score, he was already carrying a lofty 233 average in the league, which his wife Katie is secretary-treasurer of.

Way back on Nov. 6, Ishpeming’s Steve Windahl, 47, also rolled a 300, his second of the season, in a 749 series during the Country Wednesday Trio at the now-Red Rock Lanes. His first 300 this season came in September and was the cornerstone of an 823 series, and I did get a chance to crow about that one right after the fact.

It’s understandable that he doesn’t rush to the phone every time he rolls a big score – the two 300s this season are his 27th and 28th sanctioned ones he’s had to go with 22 series of 800 or better in his career.

Not quite two weeks ago on Jan. 15, Windahl made a bid for another 300 when he shot 297 in a 722 in that same league, his one and only he’s a regular in.

Two-handed bowler Glenn Ayotte, 26, whose technique I’d say compares favorably with Sunday’s PBA Tournament of Champions winner Jason Belmonte, just missed two U.S. Bowling Congress honor scores on Jan. 13, rolling a 299 game in a 796 series during the Monday Northern Electric Automotive Industrial at Red Rock.

Like Windahl, this Ishpeming resident already has 300 and 800 this season, a huge 835 that included 300 in the same league on Oct. 21.

This time around, Ayotte said he left a solid 8-pin on the final ball of his first game using his 15-pound Storm Victory Road resin, then added 218 and 279. The final game was also all strikes except for his shot in the eighth frame that left a single pin standing. He would’ve needed to get the first 10 strikes that game to get into the 280s required for an 800 series.

In addition, the then-Country Lanes had back-to-back days with 300 near-misses last month. On Dec. 10, Kim Joki rolled 298 in a 693 in the Tuesday Major, while on Dec. 11, Bob Maki shot 297 in 705 in the Country Trio loop.

Hopefully, that catches us up on all the really big scores that have been shot in the area the past few months. If you have another one to report, though, feel free to shoot me an e-mail at the address listed at the end of this column.

Here’s The Mining Journal Bowlers of the Week for Jan. 10-16, where the top bowlers also used huge games as the cornerstone of their achievements.

Gary Price won men’s honors with a 154-pins-over-average effort in the Tuesday Major at Red Rock, beating his 129 average with a 541 series on games of 144, 170 and 227, the final game nearly a hundred pins over by itself.

Tied for second at plus-137 were two other Red Rock bowlers, Price’s leaguemate Steve Gohl, who came in with a 193 average and hit 716 with a 257 high game, and Joey “Steve” Briggs in the Wednesday SIR Credit Union League, starting at a 211 average and bombing a 770 with a 267 best.

For the ladies, Linda Chapman won by shooting 120 pins over her 146 average with a 558 series that included a 247 game, that big game 101 pins over average all on its own.

Next came Hope Virch in the Tuesday Night Mixed at Superior Lanes, who was 86 over her 193 average with 665 and a 242 tops, followed by Lyn Rolain, who shot 82 over her 126 average with 460 including a 184 best.