UMES WELL REPRESENTED AT TEAM USA TRIALS
Jan. 10, 2013
LAS VEGAS - As they are every year, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) keglers are well-represented at the TEAM USA Trials, held January 3-7 at Strike Zone Bowling Center in Henderson, Nev. This year saw both UMES coaches, two current Hawks and alumni all compete for a spot to represent their nation.
Head Coach and former All-America bowler Kristina Frahm (Oswego, Ill.) represented well. Frahm took a 500.00 dollar prize for winning day one of the event. She also earned one point for the finish among 85 women bowlers. Points were awarded for placement each day with the lowest point totals earning the top spots.
On day one Frahm finished with a six-game tally of 1,376 (229.33 average) on the 40-foot Athens pattern. She finished ahead of former Team USA member Brenda Padilla of Mansfield, Texas, who was second with 1,332. Sarah Lokker of New Baltimore, Mich., was third with 1,315. Each day featured a new look, one of five World Tenpin Bowling Association patterns being used for the event
"I haven't been able to practice too much because I've spent so much time coaching, so this feels nice," said Frahm. "This is the pattern I felt most comfortable on in practice, and it's definitely a confidence booster for the rest of the tournament."
Unfortunately Frahm wasn't able to turn her early success into a top finish. Her next best finish would be 16th on day four of the event. She would tally 146 points to finish 18th in the hunt. She amassed a 6080 pinfall for an average of 202.67 for the event.
"I was fairly happy with that," said Frahm. "My first priority is coaching the Hawks so practice time is limited. Still I thought I wasn't getting ball reaction the way I would have hoped the latter days. I still have room to improve."
Current Hawks Megan Buja (Rockford, Ill.) and Valerie Riggin (Vista, Calif.) also competed in the event. Buja, a pre-season All-MEAC selection was 33rd overall. Her best finish came on day three with a 17th place finish. She would average a 195.73 over the five day event. Riggin was 47th overall with her best place coming on the final day where she was 23rd. She averaged a 190.96.
Alumna Sara DiScioscia (Hampton, Va.) who was a member of the 2008 championship team finished in 55th. Her best day was the third when she was 22nd. DiScioscia averaged a 189.13.
Last year's National Tenpins Coaches Association (NTCA) National Player of the Year and current Fairleigh Dickinson bowler Danielle McEwan won the women's event. She was one and two on days two and three and took second overall before defeating Diandra Asbaty in the finals. Asbaty averaged a 219.56. Both were named to the Team USA squad. McEwan topped Josie Earnest, who earned a TEAM USA spot, in the first round.
UMES Assistant Coach Tyler Schmitz also bowled in the event, in an effort to make the men's team. Schmitz took 60th place in the 171 man event, averaging a 206.16. His best day was an 18th place on day four.
John Szczerbinski, a fan and supporter of UMES bowling who was on hand to watch last year's National Championship, won the event. He won the men's day one competition with Frahm and tallied a meager 31 points and claimed the prize in the step-ladder finals. He averaged an impressive 234.23 for the five-days, throwing the same ball on all five patterns. This is his third time making Team USA. He defeated Marshall Kent in the finals, who also made the team. Kent topped John Janawicz, who also earned a spot, in the first round.
The top three men and top three women after five rounds of qualifying were guaranteed spots on Team USA in 2013 and bowled in the stepladder finals for the right to be declared champion, a spot in the QubicaAMF World Cup and prize money. Two more men and two more women from the event were selected to join Team USA, while five men and five women were selected from a pool of eligible bowlers based on their bowling resumes and Trials performance, if they competed.
A total of eight Junior Team USA spots - four boys and four girls - were also available. The top two boys and top two girls in the final points standings earned automatic spots, while two boys and two girls spots were at-large selections taken from either the Team USA Trials field or the finals field from the North Pointe Junior Gold Championships held in July 2012. All bowlers 20 and under as of Jan. 1, 2013 are eligible for Junior Team USA.
The National Selection Committee also announced the remainder of the Team USA roster, which was made up of two men and two women based on their performance at the Team USA Trials and five men and five women who met eligibility requirements and submitted resumes for consideration.
The men's selections based on resumes Chris Barnes, Bill O'Neill, Tommy Jones, Mike Fagan and Steve Smith, while Eddie VanDaniker and Kyle King were selected based on their Trials performance. Joining the women's team as selections from resumes were Liz Johnson, Kelly Kulick, Shannon O'Keefe, Stefanie Nation, Shannon Pluhowsky, while Brittni Hamilton and Missy Parkin were picked based on Trials performance.
There were also four spots on Junior Team USA awarded Monday with the top two age-eligible finishers for the boys and girls earning automatic spots. The selection committee also added two boys and two girls.
Joining Junior Team USA were EJ Tackett, Wesley Low, Kamron Doyle and Dominic Partipilo on the boys side, while Elise Bolton, Morgan O'Brien, Mary Wells and Ashley Rucker made it on the girls side.
Portions of this release are compliments of Lucas Wiseman and www.bowl.com