Rick Woloszyn ready for PBA Senior stop in Hammond
By Anthony Nasella Post-Tribune correspondent August 5, 2012 8:30PM
Rick Woloszyn of Griffith rests between bowls in his third game during the second round of qualifying of the PBA Senior Lake County Open at Olympia Lanes in Hammond, Ind. Wednesday August 10, 2011. | Stephanie Dowell~Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 7, 2012 6:16AM
PBA Senior pro Rick Woloszyn decided to make a change in pro shops a little more than a year ago, and that change has been paying dividends for the Griffith resident in PBA Regional events.
And it has him brewing with confidence headed into this week’s PBA South Shore Senior Open at Olympia Lanes.
Woloszyn finished in the top 15 in two PBA regionals that he competed in this past month (ninth-place in New Lenox, Ill., and 14th place at Wooddale, Ill.), earning more than a $1,000 in the two events. Back in January, he finished second to Tom Carter at the Lynwood (Ill.) Regional. As he readies himself for the Hammond stop, which currently features a field of 124 bowlers and nine PBA Hall of Famers, Woloszyn will look to significantly improve on last year’s 190 average at Olympia.
“I feel a lot better with my game since I switched pro shops,” Woloszyn said. “I feel a lot more confident of shooting the shot they’re putting out, and I feel my equipment is dialed in pretty good right now.”
In selecting his current pro shop, John Haney of Elite Pro Shop in Griffith, Woloszyn was able to pick a pro shop that not only enhanced his game but also requires very little travel time.
“He’s only about a block and a half from my house, so that’s very convenient,” Woloszyn said. “He has kind of a grass-roots pro shop. He doesn’t really advertise, but he’s been a big help to my game. I bowl with him and I trust his expertise.
“I’ve also learned a lot from pros like Eugene McCune and local amateurs like Mike Kubacki, Bob Kammer Jr. and Chris Cundiff. I learned a lot of ways to drill up equipment and it’s better to defeat these lane patterns. The patterns are similar, but they’re different. If you can find a good drilling pattern and driller, then you have a good chance of beating a lot of these shots.”
But Woloszyn also said that another key to his confidence and recent success is his improved spare game, which he knows makes a big difference — especially in his admittance that his game is more speed and less finesse.
“My spare game is at the top,” he said. “I don’t miss a lot of them and it keeps me in a lot of these tournaments. I’m not a big strike bowler, but I have a lot of speed. A finesse bowler will generally out-strike a fast bowler. But if I keep my spare game together, I have a really good chance of cashing.”
Woloszyn said he shamelessly uses Hammer and Ebonite for patriotic and practical purposes.
“They’re made in the USA and I’m a steel worker,” he said. “But I have a small hand, and those products seem to hook a little bit more than Storm. It requires a lot of hitting power from me to make a Storm (ball) work. Hammer and Ebonite are more geared to my game.”