More than 480 Special Olympics Southern California athletes set out to be the high rollers of the day at the 2019 Bowling Championship at Fountain Bowl on Aug. 24.
The competition was split up into morning and afternoon sessions, with four ramp assisted groupings and 28 singles divisions to open the festivities.
The top ramp assisted score of the event belonged to Glendale’s Trynity Roberts, who bowled a 183 over four games to earn Division RA01’s gold medal.
The lanes featured plenty of close battles and eye-popping scores in the morning. Top scorers included Pasadena’s Roger Sanchez (371, Division 24), Whittier’s Pattie O’Rourke (369, Division 28) and Inland Empire’s Jennifer Ali (349, Division 18).
The latter two divisions also involved some of the tighter finishes, with identical differences between the silver and bronze medalists. Jennifer Gibson (Fountain Valley Lightning Bolts) edged out Carla Walker (Corona-Norco Dragons), 274-272, in Division 18, while Courtney Cantacessi (Temecula Valley) held off Tracy Wagner (Mighty Menifee), 343-341, in Division 28.
Division 16 contained the closest 1-2 finish of the morning. Andrea Acevedo Diaz (Antelope Valley) prevailed against Mia Tiefer-Silverman (South Bay), 226-225, to win the gold.
Other notable scores included a tie for silver in Division 09, as Melissa Bonilla (Temecula Valley) and Kim Parker (Inland Empire) bowled scores of 220 to finish behind only Amy Marshall (242, Redlands-Yucaipa Rebels).
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The second half of the day was comprised of 27 singles divisions and a team competition.
Four bowlers exceeded scores of 500 in the afternoon, led by Kern County’s James Wooten (Division 54) and his 551 total.
The competition in Division 55 was unmatched. Alexander Lee (Fountain Valley Sharkwaves) rolled a combined 548 to outlast David Adams (515, Carson-South Bay). The grouping also featured last season’s top point-getter Del Anderson II (Mighty Menifee), who earned bronze by a point with a score of 493 at this year’s event.
Surya Natarajan (Tri-Valley Matador) accounted for the fourth score of 500 or more, finishing with 515 to earn gold in Division 50.
The highest scores of the women’s divisions belonged to Rebecca English of Mighty Menifee (404, Division 36) and Ruth Lowe of the Corona-Norco Dragons (403, Division 52).
In the closest finishes of the afternoon, Joshua Inouye (South Bay-Carson) topped Brenner Kwan-Golden (Glendale), 469-468, in Division 53; Thomas Romero (Ventura Conejo) squeaked past Blake Gutierrez (Corona-Norco Dragons), 375-374, in Division 41; and Alissa Abry (Central Riverside) won a hotly contested battle with Debra Day (Santa Barbara), 339-338, in Division 31.
The team bowling gold medal was won by Ventura County’s Camarillo Rollers. Thomas Bowers, Christopher Hodson, Jeffrey Oberkrieser and Chris Rodriguez combined for 1,429 points to claim the gold. Ventura County’s Pin Droppers (silver) and San Luis Obispo County’s Superstars (bronze) and Strikers (fourth) rounded out the standings.
In addition, the day also featured a Unified bowling exhibition with teams from Barstow, Central Riverside, Chula Vista and Kern County. The teams of four included individuals with and without intellectual disabilities and all participants received participation ribbons.
Inside the SOSC is a blog managed by staff member Tracy McDannald. It is a more feature-style approach to looking inside what makes Special Olympics Southern California so unique, so special. It is meant to explore the people and their stories. One word at a time.