Bowling: Gina Pritchett, Amanda McCormick take home P-T titles
By Anthony Nasella Post-Tribune correspondent October 27, 2013 8:56PM
Updated: December 1, 2013 7:04AM
DYER — Despite being a highly-respected league bowler, Gina Pritchett admits that she’s more concerned about the bowling future of her daughter, Jackie Rhoda, who bowls for Portage High School.
But during Sunday’s Post-Tribune Fall Sport Shot Classic, Pritchett performed on a level that would have, undoubtedly, made her father, the late four-time Professional Bowlers Association national champion Gene Rhoda, very proud.
Pritchett, who had just rolled a 795 series in the Saturday Mixed league at Ray’s Lanes in Lake Station, was the top qualifier of the women’s division with a 208 average. She then won three games in match play, capping off the day with a 233-148 victory over Tonda Hill in the final.
Pritchett was clean through six frames against Hill before striking out on her last six shots. Hill, who was clean in almost 20 straight frames between the quarterfinal and final, opened in the seventh before she hit tough luck with back-to-back splits on her next two shots.
“I’m more about supporting my daughter (who bowled in the youth division on Sunday),” Pritchett said. “I wasn’t even going to bowl, but (two-time P-T Awards Tournament champ) Don Draia talked me into bowling. The shot broke down right into my wheelhouse.
“It was my shot out there today, though it went away during the quarterfinal. But I stayed with the Enigma ball I was using. All I ever wanted was to make him (dad) proud, so this win was good for me.”
Hill gained steam in the quarterfinal and semifinal when she defeated a pair of P-T Tournament champs — Kathi Tucker and Alexis Voiers, who won a Sport Shot Classic last season.
“I was extremely nervous (against Tucker),” Hill said. “My heart was in my mouth the whole time. My only
thought was to make clean shots. I bowl with Alexis in league at Cressmoor (Lanes), so I tried to take a league-night mindset where we just encourage each other. That loosened me up, but I should have made a ball change in the championship.”
In the youth division, Chesterton’s Amanda McCormick defeated Zack Carter 216-140 in the championship. Both bowlers defeated two of the region’s top high school bowlers in the semifinals — McCormick edged Munster’s Tyler Hansen 212-210, while Carter cruised past Andrean’s Kevin McCune.
“I’m not familiar with the lane conditions we competed on,” McCormick said. “The lanes were dry with heavy oil in the middle. One wrong move and you’re in trouble. So to win this was really awesome.”
Against McCormick, Carter admitted that he simply wasn’t bowling well.
“I wasn’t hitting my mark and I wasn’t finishing,” Carter said.