Illinois bowler takes Ruby All-Events lead

WCMooreThomasSumSYRACUSE, N.Y. - Sharon MooreThomas of Blue Island Ill., is pretty sure she will never hear the end of it, but she attributes her recent success at the USBC Women's Championships to her husband of 16 years.

Although Michael Thomas has been trying to advise her since the start of their marriage, this is the first time she listened to him, and his advice helped her into the Ruby All-Events lead at the Oncenter Convention Center.

MooreThomas rolled scratch scores of 598 in team, 570 in singles and 546 in doubles for a 1,714 all-events total, and an additional 19 pins of handicap per game helped her to a final score of 1,885. Shannon Sutton of Alta, Iowa, previously held the lead with 1,850.

"He woke me up at 6:45 that morning to tell me what to do," MooreThomas said. "He had taken this year off from the Open Championships to coach me, and now he is so proud of his success that he is looking for a new ringtone for my cell phone: 'Super Star.'"

MooreThomas also benefited from the cheerleading of her sister and neighbor, Bernice Ellis, and credits her trip and team organizer, Betty "Boo" Mathis, for her persistence in getting her to attend the tournament. As many as 20 teams from their area compete at the Women's Championships every year, and this year's event was MooreThomas' fifth tournament appearance.

"I didn't realize how well I was doing, since I don't watch the scores at all," said MooreThomas, a 47-year-old right-hander. "I just bowl for the benefit of dinner. My team has to buy me one if I do well."

The EKG technician for John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital in Cook County said this was one of the best trips she has ever had, and it stands out for the great time she had on the lanes. MooreThomas also chose to spend the majority of her time enjoying her teammates and the sport instead of sightseeing.

"I really like the convention build idea," MooreThomas said. "And I loved the oil pattern this year. I had to make a slight adjustment by slowing my ball down and moving closer on the approach, but it really worked well for me."

She has bowled at Brunswick Zone in Homewood, Ill., but is switching to Lakewood Bowl in Richton Park, Ill., this fall. She also plans to compete with her husband in next year's USBC Open Championships in Baton Rouge, La., as well as take part in the Women's Championships in Reno, Nev.

"I go to have fun, and that is what the championships is all about for me," MooreThomas said.

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.