Ed Roberts inducted as first bowler into Brockton Athletic Hall of Fame

Ed Roberts Athletic Hall of Fame

The Tenth Board writer/editor Rich Vogel shown here presenting Ed Roberts with his trophy at his induction into the Brockton Athletic Hall of Fame on Dec. 22, 2019. (Photo courtesy of The Enterprise/Alyssa Stone)

I’ve taken on a few service projects on the side recently, and I’m proud of one of them that has a bowling connection.

I’ve developed an association with Bill “Hogie” Hogan, a Brockton native and resident who’s a big Brockton history buff, particularly in sports. He’s known I’m a bowler, so when his idea to develop a Brockton Athletic Hall of Fame for Brockton sports figures that would include the public high school’s Hall of Fame, but also those who can’t be in the BHS Hall of Fame because they didn’t graduate from BHS or their sport isn’t offered by the high school, came to being, he asked me about who would be worthy bowlers to include. Of course, I agreed to join the committee, but, because I also know a fair amount about other Brockton sports, I slid into a role as his lead researcher.

Our first official inductions started last summer with Mike Gordon, a late Brockton High School star in the 1970s who reached the major leagues in baseball as a catcher for the Chicago Cubs, and the Brockton High School Sports Foundation, AKA Save Our Sports, as an organization, at Campanelli Stadium before a Brockton Rox game. Former world welterweight boxing champion, and a friend of the late Rocky Marciano, Tony DeMarco, was recognized last October at the main Brockton Public Library at his book signing, which was part of the Downtown Fest Brockton event.

It was decided that we would induct our first bowler at last December’s Bristol-Plymouth USBC Holiday Doubles tournament at Westgate Lanes, and, with the cooperation of the center and association, the induction was for New England bowling legend Ed Roberts of Braintree, who has bowled in the Coke/Pepsi league at Westgate since the league’s inception over two decades ago, and, indeed, many of his more notable bowling achievements have come since becoming a Westgate league bowler. There will be more bowling inductions to come, so readers should keep an eye on the Hall of Fame’s Facebook page; we will have at least one to announce in the coming week, in fact. As this post’s “administrivia”, the Hall of Fame’s Facebook page is in the Local/New England sidebar list.

Finally, everyone will note the jersey I’m wearing in the photo, which is another design I wanted to promote the website and Facebook page. Although it’s not quite what I had in mind, everyone still seems to like it. Thanks again to Danny Khuu and Solstice Sports Gear, who helped me with my first custom design, the red & black Brockton Boxer design.

My day at 2020 Special Olympics qualifier

I’ve made it no secret since I connected with my half-sister Pam that I’m also connected to Special Olympics bowling through her daughter, Becky, and that I’ve been able to join them most of the times she’s bowled the Special Olympics qualifier since the event moved to Westgate Lanes after the closing of AMF Taunton Lanes.

This year, however, they decided to only bowl the Saturday morning league at North Bowl, which was featured in this month’s issue of Action, as shared on the Facebook page. I still wanted to support the qualifier with my presence at Westgate, as I try to do for everything here. However, NEBA was also at East Providence Lanes this weekend, and, with some of the Westgate bowlers taking part in that, I was conflicted. I decided that it would be Aaron Major who would indirectly make the decision by his performance last night, with the odds actually favoring me going to NEBA by Aaron missing the squad cut and bowling the 12:30 squad today.

Aaron did make the cut, however, so I was at Westgate basically first thing this morning. Becky’s Special Olympics team is named Heller’s Angels, and I knew one of the coaches, Becky Dean, from seeing her with my family. I did eventually introduce myself to the other coaches, Jim and Susan (I didn’t get last names). The summary of the day appears on the Heller’s Angels Facebook page as the post at the top of this article, but I’ll follow with some more detail in the next paragraphs.

Not being tied to family this time allowed me to network a bit with the other Special Olympics groups at the qualifier, and I particularly sought out the ones that practiced at centers in my association. I was hoping to find either websites or Facebook pages to connect to, and succeeded with a few of those, which I liked as the association page when I got home.

Also, wanting to play up some of Westgate’s history, I was able to tell the more fortunate groups, including Heller’s Angels, that their bowlers were on our most famous pair of lanes, 47 & 48, which, of course, we’ve affectionately dubbed “Hakim’s pair”. I also texted about that to Pam, who told me she thought that was very cool.

Finally, by pure chance, one of Ed Roberts’ daughters, Rachel, seeing that I was wearing the jersey I wore at his Brockton Athletic Hall of Fame induction (more on that in a future post), introduced herself to me as one of the day’s volunteers, and also introduced me to her daughter, Carlee, who was also volunteering. We talked a bit throughout the day from that point.

Again, it was a great day, as I said in the Facebook post I chose to open the article with. This post’s “administrivia” was linking both the Heller’s Angels Facebook page and the Massachusetts Special Olympics website in the Local/New England sidebar list. I ran a Mass. Special Olympics fundraiser on Facebook for my last birthday and would like to do so again, particularly if I can earmark it for Heller’s Angels.

Link to Action newsletter added to sidebar

Most of my readers already know about the Action e-newsletter, but I was on the fence between adding their Facebook page immediately and waiting until they had a website. However, a piece on the North Bowl youth program, which is in the Bristol-Plymouth association, that appears in this month’s issue has forced my hand, and I’ve added a link to their Facebook page in the Local/New England sidebar list. Jimmy Bessette, a member of the UBA’s Chyna Sindrome, is Action’s lead writer, but Vicki Prevost, the IBMA board member who recently retired from the New Bedford Standard-Times, is also a contributor. As a final note for this “administrivia”, the piece on the North Bowl kids also mentions the Heller’s Angels, who my big sister and niece are associated with.

Bowling Science YouTube channel added to sidebar

I rejoined one of my bowling groups on Facebook and saw a first post by Mikey Pinel, son of noted Radical ball designer Mo Pinel, of one of his YouTube videos on hand positions. It’s part of his new channel, Bowling Science, and, if anyone can explain the science of bowling, you’d figure it would be a member of the Pinel family, so I put a link to the channel in the video sidebar list. Enjoy! 🙂

RSS feed for Bowlage.com added to sidebar

Where I wish to cooperate with Bowlage.com in bringing the Northeast bowlers news from around the region, I have added an RSS feed from that website to this one, and set it to show the 15 most recent articles rather than the usual 10. It also appears above my national RSS feeds in the sidebar, so I hope the bowlers like the addition. 🙂

Link to Bowlage.com added to sidebar

I’m pleased to add Bowlage.com, a website for the Northeastern bowling community, to the Local/New England sidebar list. It’s a pretty comprehensive Northeastern bowling news site with user forums also available. Guest views are limited, but you’re encouraged to register as a user on it, which is free. Feel free to check out their Facebook page, too.

Chyna Sindrome takes 28 from Phoenix in UBA season opener

As announced in UBA Today, Chyna Sindrome, the former Westgate Warriors now based out of Walnut Hill Bowl, scored a 28-12 decision over Phoenix season tour opener at Brunswick Zone Lowell. The article mentions Jim Ferguson (714) and Jon Hester (731) as the team members with at least 700 in the match.

Lots of administrivia for this, as I’ve renamed the post category to reflect the changes to the franchise, and added UBA Today to the sidebar in the media category, as it appears to be their official news site.

Links to Hollmark Shoes, Kameleon Sportswear added

Two new links, Hollmark Shoes and Kameleon Sportswear, have been added thanks to the addition of New England staffers Sean Richard and Mallory Nutting by the respective companies. Both are in the Other Equipment/Apparel category in the sidebar.

Link to Keglerz added to sidebar (with full review)

I’ve come across a potential game-changer for side events management, the link to which has been added to the sidebar under the software/apps category.

Keglerz is an iOS app which is the first mobile app for bowling side events management. What has attracted me to the app is that it allows me to go paperless, as results are stored on a server and accessible through the SidePots client app, which has links to the Apple and Google Play (for Android) app stores from that menu item on the above website. Both versions of the SidePots app are free downloads. For those who still want results on paper, AirPrint-compatible printers are supported.

The first thing a user of the events manager app will notice when setting up an event is that a ZIP code is required. This is because the client apps are location-aware and will show all Keglerz events within a given radius of the user’s current location. This can be considered free advertising of the league or tournament.

Pretty much anything that can be run for a side event is available, including both brackets and eliminators, which I’ve only seen for both in an Excel app that was advertised a few years ago on the BowlingCommunity forums. There are also blind doubles, which works differently from my PC software in that series total is not supported (though I was told it could be added in a future version), but has an option to use the bowler’s best game of the first three, and, like T-Brac, can run a simple singles tournament, which can be used as an optional singles sweeper. All events can be run scratch and handicap.

For brackets, a common request is “put me in all of them,” and Keglerz may handle that request better than anything I’ve seen, as you can enter 99 brackets and then choose “Fix bracket entries” before the brackets are randomized, which will adjust it downward. Byes are currently not supported, though a “Bye” bowler can be entered as a workaround, entering a score of 1 for the first game.

Speaking of scores, they are entered with a pull-out entry screen where you first enter the score then tap the recipient’s game. While this is counterintuitive for a mobile app, the keypad is laid out like the keypad on a PC keyboard, so it may actually speed up entry. It’s also used when entering eliminator cut scores, and the app will sort the scores high to low, making it easy to determine the cut.

You should update the server after entering each game’s scores, and the app’s data footprint is surprisingly small, in the hundreds of kilobytes range for the average session with 50 bowlers. This is handy when using a device with a cellular data connection, as wifi service in bowling centers is often spotty and you don’t have to worry about your data plan.

Finally, for leagues, you’re able to set up the league all at once and the lane assignments can be automated by entering the league’s schedule for the week.

I may still need my laptop for some things, but will be using this app. Bowlers should download the SidePots app even if they’re not in my league in case I use it for a tournament.

Link to JR Raymond YouTube channel added

While watching another bowling video on YouTube, a video by former (?) touring pro JR Raymond came up in the queue, which was a lesson for beginners on how to hook the ball (he uses curve in the title), so I decided to look at the rest of the content and, liking what I saw, decided to add the link to the channel. There are tips, of course, but there are also EBI ball reviews, breakdowns of the game of other pros, and videos of a vlog nature. The channel also has several playlists so you can quickly get to what you need. Finally, there’s a link in the channel description where you can sign up for a virtual lesson.

The link to the channel appears in the video category.

Art of Bowling added to sidebar

I found a YouTube channel, Art of Bowling (not to be confused with Jason Belmonte and Diandra Asbaty’s International Art of Bowling), which belongs to New York City-based Silver coach Arthur O’Connor. The channel has lots of good tips, so I decided to place the sidebar link under the coaching category rather than the general one for videos.

Link to Brad & Kyle added to sidebar

Anyone who has regularly followed the PBA on FOX knows that PBA bowlers Brad Miller & Kyle Sherman have a popular YouTube channel, and the link to that is now in the streaming/videos sidebar list. I’ve admittedly got some catching up to do.

BowlingDigital link, RSS feeds restored

Seeing that BowlingDigital.com was still in operation, I’ve restored everything (link and RSS feeds) I had before, and, as a bonus, added their industry news feed.

The surprise was seeing a Facebook page plug-in available, and, after some experimentation, a feed of The Tenth Board Facebook page is now in the sidebar, so that blog readers who aren’t on Facebook can see what I post there. Hope everyone enjoys it. 🙂

UPDATE: Only one of the RSS feeds, the “Top Stories” one, was visible, and that one appeared out-of-date, so I’ve removed the RSS feeds, but the link to BowlingDigital.com remains in the bowling media sidebar list; after all, no one covers international bowling like BowlingDigital.com.

Sidebar link to The People’s Tournament removed

It appeared their last Facebook post was in 2012, so I felt I had to declare The People’s Tournament defunct and removed their listing in the sidebar. The tournament did have a good run at Westgate and elsewhere, so I’ll give a salute to Sherm Cowan and Kathy Valerio (the latter whom I hope is back on my team in the fall).

Links to Kegel Training Center and Bowling ITRC added to sidebar

I’m surprised it took me this long to think of it.

You can find a bowling coach just about anywhere, but it’s generally accepted that the best coaching can be found in two places, the Kegel Training Center in Lake Wales, FL, and the Bowling International Training & Research Center (ITRC) on the International Bowling Campus in Arlington, TX. Lesson packages can be booked at both places, so I’ve included links to both in the Coaching sidebar category.

Links to Sacred Heart, Franklin Pierce bowling added to sidebar

Hoping to give the collegiate side of New England bowling a boost, I’ve added links to two colleges in the region with bowling programs, Sacred Heart and Franklin Pierce, to the sidebar. Without a dedicated college category, the links are in the New England category. Franklin Pierce has two links, as they have both men’s and women’s programs.

I’ve also removed the link to the RI Ladies Classic, as the tournament is now defunct. I really wish it got more support from the bowlers.

Also, SEMBA has outgrown its Boston-area roots and has changed its name to the Senior Masters Bowlers Association. Their link has been updated accordingly.

Link to BowlTV updated

With the USBC recently announcing that BowlTV has become a subscription service, I’ve updated the BowlTV sidebar link to point to the new service. Link can be found under “Bowling Streaming/Videos”.

Also, I’ve removed two links to BowlerExpress, as the new Brunswick Sync scoring system has been found to be incompatible with the older BowlerExpress standings site.

Link to Specto Bowling added to sidebar

I’m sure most of us who watch bowling on TV know that Kegel’s Specto Bowling has been used extensively on FOX’s coverage of the PBA Tour. I did find out yesterday that Specto is available as a mobile app. I’ve linked the Android app on the web Google Play, but iPhone users shouldn’t worry: The iOS version of the app is on iTunes.

Link to Sweep the Rack added to sidebar

Jeff Richgels helped point me to the Sweep the Rack podcast, which is now in the podcast links list in the sidebar. If a well-known bowling writer likes a podcast, you know it’s worth a link here. 🙂

Sean Richard wins TPS title in first attempt

The Tournament Players Series posted on Facebook that Westgate’s Sean Richard defeated Greg Green, 226-204 (with handicap), to win yesterday’s event at East Providence Lanes for his first TPS title in his first attempt.

WTG Seany! 🙂

UPDATEThe TPS only has a Facebook group, which is now in the “Local/New England” sidebar list.

BowlingDigital.com RSS feeds removed

As some of you know, the well-known bowling news site BowlingDigital.com ceases operations after 20 years today, so I’ve had to remove the RSS feeds from the site from the sidebar. It had been a go-to site for international bowling news, and so will be missed, and I wish founder Herb Bickel all the best. The site’s link will be removed shortly.

Link to MAUSBCYA.org reinstated

I recently learned that the state association actually retained mausbcya.org for use by the association’s youth committee, so I have reinstated the link to that website in the “Local/New England” sidebar list.

Sept. 23 Sunday Niters recap

I think I did mention that I’d be subbing on my Sunday Niters team instead of being a regular bowler, and my first opportunity to sub was last night, for Peter.

Last night’s bowling, frame-by-frame

Back-to-back good nights, but a little more consistent last night. My biggest problem seemed to be chopping the 6-10, but I also only missed one single pin (a 10, but I didn’t leave it often).

Result: 194-161-199=554
Average (3 games): 184
Next week’s AVG+1 score: 556

Composite average (12 games): 169

If our anchor (Eric Healy) got the second hit in the 10th second game, it would have been all eight, but we had to settle for six.

As administrivia, a limited number of Sunday Niters-related links are back in the “Author’s links” list, but standings likely won’t be there.

State association sidebar links updated

The Mass. State USBC Bowling Association has launched a new website, so the “Local/New England” sidebar list has been updated with the link to the new website, removing the others that reflected an unmerged association. The Brockton local association site in the list is still the old one, but we’re working on that, as well.

Xtra Frame sidebar link updated to FloBowling

With the PBA having changed its video streaming from Xtra Frame to FloBowling, the Xtra Frame sidebar link has been updated accordingly. FloBowling has promised additional coverage of PBA regional events, so the new FloBowling should be worth checking out.

Link to Strike 12 Creations added to sidebar

My bowling apparel company list grew by another with the addition of Strike 12 Creations, which, while not New England, is a sponsor of the California state tournament this year. The company was found on Facebook, and their website is now linked in the sidebar.

Links to Mike Shady’s Peak Performance Bowling, The Solid Nine added to sidebar

A couple of links that Jeff Richgels alerted me to are now in the sidebar:

Coach Mike Shady, who has been a recent contributor to The 11th Frame, now has his own site, with a few blog articles currently available focusing on the mental game. This link can be found in the “Coaching/Tips” category.

I’m not sure how new it is, because there have been 55 episodes, but The Solid Nine podcast is now linked in the podcasts category. The latest episode features a wrap-up of the PBA Players Championship, and they also discuss the USBC ball technology study. The link is to SoundCloud, but the podcast is also available on iTunes and Stitcher.

Link to Solstice Sports Gear added to sidebar

At least a couple of bowlers, Danny Khuu and Tim Major, are sporting custom jerseys made by Solstice Sports Gear, whose Facebook page can now be found in the sidebar (under Other equipment/apparel). Danny is on Solstice staff, so he can be contacted if you have ideas for a jersey design.

Link to Tri-State Bowlers added to sidebar

Via the Digital Bowling Society, Justin Sorel’s new Tri-State Bowlers site came to my attention. It appears to be a Timely calendar with bowling events in southern New England, which can be subscribed to (for your own calendars), and events can also be added to it on the site. I gave it a “Local/New England” sidebar link, not being sure if I can merge it with the calendar on this site.

Link to Target Line Bowling added to sidebar

It is a skeleton site right now, but Target Line Bowling, the site of bowling instructors John Wilson and Bill Hall, has come to my attention via the IBMA’s Facebook group, and I’ve added a link (in the Coaching/Tips category) with the promise of more content to come.