Women's Championships comes to a close

BakerLindsay250RENO, Nev. - Lindsay Baker of Brigham City, Utah, had a breakout performance at the 2012 United States Bowling Congress Women's Championships and is in position to win three titles now that the event has ended its 86-day run at the National Bowling Stadium.

The 2005-06 NCAA Collegiate Bowler of the Year at the University of Nebraska rolled a 784 series in doubles, 735 in singles and 707 in team to take the Scratch All-Events crown with a 2,226 total, the third-highest all-events score in 93 years of tournament history. Jodi Woessner of Oregon, Ohio, set the all-events record with 2,330 at the 2010 USBC Women's Championships in El Paso, Texas.

Baker, a 26-year-old right-hander, also teamed with two-time Junior Team USA member Elysia Current of Ephrata, Pa., to win Scratch Doubles and tie for the top spot in Diamond Doubles with 1,480. Current, the 2011 USBC Queens runner-up, added a 696 set to the doubles effort.

Since their combined entering average exceeded 440, Baker and Current did not receive any handicap. They share the top Diamond spot with Corina Grasso of Fort Collins, Colo., and Megan Hill of Eastlake, Ohio, who shot 769 and 606, respectively, and received an additional 35 pins of handicap per game to reach their final total. All Diamond, Ruby and Sapphire standings are unofficial until final verification is made.

BakerandCurrent250"I'm completely ecstatic," Baker said. "It's been an interesting few weeks waiting, but I'm glad it worked out the way it did. I've put so much time and effort into my game, and there are so few opportunities for female bowlers, so I'm really excited. I also got to bowl with a doubles partner who is such a great talent, so I'm happy we get to share this."

Baker nearly put herself in position for a fourth title, too. She is second in Diamond All-Events with a 2,262 handicap total, behind Joyce Biondo of Carpentersville, Ill., a member of the 2011 Diamond Team champion, who leads with 2,269.

Pam Pancoast of Lomita, Calif., needed every pin she could get in her final game to win Scratch Singles. She finished with 779, one pin ahead of Tammy Lewis of San Jose, Calif.

PancoastPamLARGEThe 50-year-old right-hander began her singles competition with games of 213 and 266 before rolling one of the record four perfect games at the 2012 event. Pancoast, who finished second in Scratch All-Events with 2,219, struck on 27 of her last 28 shots.

"Oh my gosh, I'm elated," Pancoast said. "It has sunk in more since I actually bowled the tournament. I think my husband was more excited about it than me at first. The closer I got to holding onto something, the more excited I got. I didn't think that score would stick, so it's pretty exciting to become a national champion."

Betty Brooks of Lakewood, Calif., Caryn Evitts of Waukegan, Ill., and Kristin Warzinski of Fort Worth, Texas, also rolled perfect games at the 2012 Women's Championships, bringing the all-time total to 19. There also were three 299s, two 298s and two 297s this year.

CoefficientOfFriction250LargeCoefficient of Friction of Palo Alto, Calif., also tasted victory for the first time at the Women's Championships as the Scratch Team winner with a 3,302 total.

Games of 1,160, 1,053 and 1,089 helped the group edge out Together Once Again of Keller, Texas, which finished with 3,297. Brittany Hillman led the way for Coefficient of Friction with a 720 set and was joined by Mandy Green (655), Jackie Wyckoff (654), Terri Stynes (639) and Kimberly Power (634).

"We've been on pins and needles all week just hoping our score would hold up," said Wyckoff, a Bowling Writers Association of America board member. "I'm absolutely thrilled, and my teammates are just ecstatic. Now, we can cross that off the bucket list."

Complete standings for the 2012 Women's Championships can be found at BOWL.com/womenschamp.

Also in the headlines this year was Mini Tvaska of St. Petersburg, Fla., who extended her own participation record by making her 66th consecutive Women's Championships appearance. The 94-year-old began her historic run at the 1947 event in Grand Rapids, Mich. Seven other bowlers made memorable marches down Center Aisle at the one-of-a-kind facility as they celebrated 50 years of tournament participation.

The 2012 Women's Championships featured more than 6,100 teams and ran each day from April 14 until July 8.

In 2013, the Women's Championships will move down the street to the Reno-Sparks Convention Center, where 44 specially-constructed lanes will be set up to host the world's largest participatory sporting event for women. The Stadium will be home to the USBC Open Championships in 2013, marking the first time both tournaments will be held in the same host city in the same year.

Presenting sponsors for the 2012 USBC Women's Championships are Circus Circus, Eldorado Hotel Casino and Silver Legacy Resort Casino in Reno, Nev. Other sponsors include Harrah's Reno Casino, official brackets sponsor, Kegel, official lane maintenance provider, Humana, official registration sponsor, Steltronic, official scoring system, and supporting sponsors Storm Bowling Products, Nationwide Insurance, Sands Regency Casino Hotel and Atlantis Casino Resort and Spa and MyBowlingVacation.com.