BATON ROUGE, La. - It may have been a day late, but Sean Swanson of Springfield, Mo., provided some fireworks for the crowd at the United States Bowling Congress Open Championships on Thursday.
The 43-year-old right-hander rolled the 19th perfect game of this year's tournament at the Baton Rouge River Center and made a run at the Regular Doubles lead with Sean Quinn of Guntown, Miss.
Swanson's 300 came between games of 257 and 225 for a 782 series, while Quinn added a 675 set for a 1,457 total and fourth place overall. Matt McNiel of Prior Lake, Minn., and Charles Vashaw of Deephaven, Minn., lead with 1,489.
Although Swanson thought he bowled just as well in team Wednesday, his 586 series didn't reflect it.
"I bowled all right last night but left some 8 and 9 pins and a 4-9, and I really couldn't get any strings going," said Swanson, who made his 11th USBC Open Championships appearance. "The game plan today was to manipulate my hand position to help me knock all the pins down."
Swanson turned to years of experience at top-tier events to help him find the right hand position to increase his carry for doubles and singles, and it quickly paid off.
"I tried to get more on the side of it to create angle for carry, and I was able to shoot 257 the first game," Swanson said. "Then, I moved about five left with something that got down the lane a little more. I was pretty relaxed but kept moving left a little at a time, even in the 10th frame, because the heads were getting drier. Honestly, I was just thinking about hitting the pocket, not shooting 300."
The two-time Professional Bowlers Association Southwest Region Player of the Year continued striking in singles on the way to games of 222, 265 and 245 for a 732 series and moved into ninth place in Regular All-Events with 2,100. McNiel leads with 2,202.
"He's been bowling great this year, and I'm sure he felt pretty comfortable and confident out there today," said Quinn, who had 691 in team and 543 in singles for a 1,909 all-events effort. "I haven't bowled much since this tournament last year, and it showed my first game each set, but once I got acclimated and was able to get the ball of my hand, things went well. I'm just fortunate he bowled well throughout, and we were able to finish strong in doubles."
Sponsors for the 2012 USBC Open Championships include Circus Circus Reno, Eldorado Hotel Casino Reno and Silver Legacy Resort Casino Reno. Other sponsors include the Belle of Baton Rouge, official brackets sponsor; Kegel, official lane maintenance provider; Humana, official registration sponsor; Bud Light and Budweiser, official beer sponsors; The Advocate, official publication sponsor; Brunswick, official lane provider; Steltronic, official scoring system; Storm Bowling Products and Nationwide Insurance.