Scores on the rise at 2017 USBC Women's Championships

By Matt Cannizzaro and Scott Simon
USBC Communications

Competition at the 2017 United States Bowling Congress Women's Championships began just over a week ago, and scores have started to pick up at the Raising Cane's River Center.

Highlights this week include new leaders across three divisions - Diamond and Amethyst Doubles and Ruby All-Events.

MooreKeoshaCelestinKateri2017WCForWeb250x140Kateri Celestin of New Orleans and Keosha Moore of Walker, Louisiana, raised the bar in the tournament's top division, combining for a 1,243 total to become the new Diamond Doubles leaders. Traci Boyle of Island Lake, Illinois, and past champion Shawna Treat of Gilbert, Arizona, previously held the lead with 1,217.

This was the third USBC Women's Championships for Moore, who delivered a 666 series. The 29-year-old didn't have to travel far to find success on the tournament lanes, as she is a manager at a restaurant (Rotolo's) in this year's host city. Celestin added a 577 series to the performance.

Moore attributes her success to advice from her father, who is a bowler and her coach. She also recently made some changes to her equipment, which helped.

"I used stronger equipment and got better carry," Moore said. "And I just changed equipment a couple of months ago."

Both bowlers also cracked the top 10 in Diamond All-Events, with Moore settling into third place with 1,773, and Celestin moving into ninth place with 1,688.

Celestin, a 44-year-old Women's Championships first-timer who didn't intend to bowl in the event but accepted an invitation from her doubles partner, also is ninth in Diamond Singles with 597.

In Amethyst Doubles, two 1998 Division III Team champions, Joeia Moore of North East, Maryland, and Jean Hall of Elkton, Maryland, once again found their strides on the biggest stage in women's bowling and found their way to the top of the leaderboard with a 919 total.MooreJoeiaHallJean2017WCForWeb250x140

Hall, 61, admitted she wasn't paying attention to the scoreboard as she paced the pair with a 465 series. The 62-year-old Moore added a 460 set and knew they had a chance to take the lead.

"Well, with about four frames to go, I figured out that with an 850-something, we could get to 900, but I didn't say anything to Jean because I didn't want to make her nervous," Moore said. "We bowled (the) team event last night, and you'd never know we'd bowl anything good today based on what we shot last night."

The two right-handers bowled together this year on Alley Gators 2 and each have logged more than three decades of Women's Championships participation. They've bowled together for 34 years at their home center, Elk Lanes in Elkton.

Diane Holtkamp of West Point, Iowa, and Jacque Forrester of Wever, Iowa, previously held the lead in Amethyst Doubles with 909.

For Renzie Kintzler of Cheyenne, Wyoming, even a hectic, whirlwind week wasn't enough to knock her off her game, and she found her way into the top 10 in three events at the River Center.

TwoBarBowl2017WCForWeb250x140A near miss in Ruby Team only set the pace for her overall performance, as the 34-year-old right-hander posted sets of 647 in team, 578 in singles and 482 in doubles to secure the lead in Ruby All-Events with a 1,707 total. She also is sixth in Ruby Singles, while her Two Bar Bowl team is second in Ruby Team with 2,035.

Kintzler thought she had no chance winning all-events after her poor doubles series, but she managed to relax and refocus before turning things around for singles.

"I knew three games wasn't going to ruin me," Kintzler said. "I relaxed, got the body moving, thought about shot-making and pulled myself together.

Kintzler is a stay-at-home mom, but she has an appointment this weekend that will match the excitement of bowling the best series in her eight-year Women's Championships career.

"I just finished dental hygiene school, and I take my clinical state board test Saturday," Kintzler said. "It's hectic. I'll leave here, get back to Cheyenne, take a day off then off to Denver for that."

Visit us on Facebook at the official USBC Women's Championships page.