AVON — Forgive the attendees at Thursday’s Elyria USBC Bowling Association awards banquet at Tom’s Country Place for feeling like it was 2012 all over again — or maybe even 2007.
For the third time in the past seven seasons, John Shreve Sr. and Judy Kovacs took home the men’s and women’s Russ Davies Memorial Awards as The Chronicle-Telegram Bowlers of the Year.
The pair, who run the Family Fun Pro Shop at Brunswick Zone in North Ridgeville, have won the award 17 times between them — Kovacs 10 times and Shreve Sr. seven. It was the third time they won the awards in the same year.
“I’ve been bowling since I was 5 years old. It’s just my God-given talent,” Kovacs said of her success since winning her first Bowler of the Year in 1989.
“I had one of my better years this year,” said the veteran, who bowled three 300 games to up her career total to six and 15 700s, including a season-best 791 (266-257-268) on Oct. 27. All her scores came out of Brunswick Zone.
Shreve Sr. had the best scoring season of his lengthy career. His eight 800 series included a season-high 868 (269-300-299) on Jan. 19 at Brunswick Zone. The 300 was one of six he rolled during the season.
“In the older days, I would practice 50 or 60 games a week. Now I take it easy and keep it around 15 or 20 practice games a week,” said Shreve Sr., who spends much of the summer competing on the PBA 50 Senior Tour, where he has recorded two second-place finishes. “Players are better now than they used to be when I first started bowling. The dynamics of the ball have also changed. The newer balls allow bowlers to be more aggressive and go after more strikes.”
Proof of that came in this season’s record-setting totals. Ninety-nine 300 games (95 by men), 56 800 series and 54 700 series by women were bowled between Sept. 1 and April 30.
The annual awards ceremony was a family reunion for the Shreve family. Two of Shreve’s granddaughters, McKinley and Madison, won Chronicle-Telegram Youth Bowler of the Year Awards in their age divisions.
“It’s feels great to be recognized as one of the top bowlers, and it’s even better to know my grandpa and dad are also two of the best bowlers around,” said Madison, who is entering her junior year at Vermilion High School, where she carried a 198 average last season.
Dylan Daniels and Hunter Simboli were the recipients of the boys youth awards.
The 14-year-old Simboli maintained a 202 average and won the award for the second consecutive year despite the fact that he gave up the sport between the ages of 8 and 13.
“A friend asked me to go cosmic bowling and I really liked it so I decided I wanted to get my own bowling ball and get back into it again,” Simboli said. “It was hard getting strikes at first, but the more I bowled the more comfortable I felt.”
The Elyria USBC Bowling Association added six new members to its Hall of Fame. On the women’s side Wilma Yanick received a meritorious induction while Elizabeth Lamm was inducted posthumously.
The men added three new bowlers — John Gregory, Dewey Justice and Tom Hudak. Walt Sukey, who entered the hall as a bowler in 1997, earned a second induction for his service to the sport.
For Justice, who has been bowling since the age of 5, the news that he made the Hall came in late March, just days after he bowled an 800 series. A few weeks later he celebrated by throwing his first 300 game in 34 years.
“I never thought I was good enough, but after I had that series I felt like I deserved it,” Justice said. “I’m honored to be in the Hall of Fame with these guys. I have bowled against most of them for many years.”
Contact Todd Shapiro at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
22nd Annual Elyria Mixed
Division A (Age 73 or older): Evie Arndt 804 (with handicap); Division B (Age 65-72): Robert Moore 761 (with handicap); Division C (Age 55-64): Tim Reid 779 (with handicap)
Elyria Women’s 600 Club
Erin Loschetter and Amanda Morrow, tie, 717
3rd Annual Elyria USBC 700
Handicap: Jim McCowan 784; Scratch: Wayne Lowther 746
10th Annual Fluker Memorial Mixed Doubles
Matt Simon and Matt Darmafall, 1413 (with handicap)
72nd Annual Elyria Women’s Singles
Shannon Price 697 (with handicap)
75th Annual Championship Elyria USBC Open
Team Handicap: Triple XXX, 3,478, (William Godfrey, William Taylor, Steve Taylor, John Ponzoch, Mike Dilello): Doubles with handicap: Bob Tallhamer and Dave Ash 1450; Singles with handicap: Adam Downing 807; Actual All-Events Award: Rick Parshen 2119; Handicap All-Events Award: Adam Downing 2307; Midway Trophies High Series: Marc Chappo 767; Brunswick Zone High Game: Bryan Henceroth 300; EBC–Jim Moran/ Ray Benson High Singles Actual Series: John Shreve, Sr. 732; A&J Lawn Care & Dynamic T’s High Team Series Actual Open Award: Tim Carey, Shannon Price, John Price, Perry Keplinger, James Downing 3320
Sheriff Phil Stammitti Award (High Series in league play): Men: John Shreve Sr. 868; Women: Judy Kovacs 791
Margaret Henke Award (Women’s High Average): Kovacs 226
Elyria USBC Award (Men’s High Average): Rick Parschen 242
Cardi Lanes Memorial Award (Men’s Most Improved): Chris Henning
Pat Henke Award (Women’s Most Improved): Michelle Turovsky
Sam Radyk (Secretary of the Year): Gail Donley
Sam’s Lanes Pioneer Award: Ila Connerth
Lorain County Auditors Award (Women’s high single game): Judy Kovacs and Cheryl Nicolaou (300s)
Chronicle-Telegram Women’s All-Star Team: Amanda Morrow, Judy Kovacs, Sami Balmuta, Jen Ellingsworth, Erin Loschetter
Chronicle-Telegram Men’s All-Star Team: John Shreve Sr., Rick Parschen, Chris Henning, Tim Carey, Bob Phillips
Russ Davies Memorial Bowler of the year Award: Judy Kovacs (women); John Shreve Sr. (men)
Chronicle-Telegram YABA Bowlers of the Year: Bantam: Madison Shreve (girls), Dylan Daniels (boys); Juniors: McKinley Shreve (girls), Hunter Simboli (boys)
HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
Women: Elizabeth Lamm (posthumous); Wilma Yanick (meritorious)
Men: John Gregory, Dewey Justice, Tom Hudak (bowling); Walt Sukey (service)