By Fran Piraino
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - Thanks to a small adjustment on her delivery, Camille McQueen of Long Valley, N.J., vaulted into first place in Ruby Singles at the 2011 USBC Women's Championships on Monday.
By focusing on her follow through, McQueen rolled games of 230, 204 and 223 for a 657 scratch set, and an additional 15 pins of handicap per game lifted her to a 702 handicap total. Renita Merritt of Conyers, Ga., previously held the lead with 681.
After bowling under her 165 average in doubles, McQueen noticed that other bowlers around her were rolling strikes at the Oncenter Convention Center. That's when the right-hander realized her technique was off.
"My ball wasn't finishing," said McQueen, who bowls at Circle Lanes in Ledgewood, N.J. "I was leaving washouts and splits. I couldn't figure out why until I looked around and noticed they were all following through. So I started concentrating on doing that, and it made all the difference in the world."
McQueen, a 55-year-old high school chemistry teacher, has never cashed in eight trips to the USBC Women's Championships, which is why she didn't realize she was in first place until a day later.
"We came back the next morning for our bracket money and we saw the scoreboard," McQueen said. "It was very exciting. I never imagined I'd see my name atop the leaderboard. Not in a million years."
McQueen finished with a 505 in team and 443 in doubles for a 1,605 scratch all-events total. The Ruby Division is for bowlers with averages of 150-179, and handicap is 100 percent of 180.
Sponsors for the 2011 USBC Women's Championships sponsors include Turning Stone Resort and Casino, official brackets sponsor, Humana, official registration sponsor, Miller Lite and Molson Canadian, official beer sponsors. Supporting sponsors include Storm Bowling Products, Nationwide Insurance, The Oncenter, Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau, Caz Limo & Tours, Kegel, official lane maintenance provider, US Steltronic, official scoring system, and Brunswick, official lane provider.