Angie Brown gave herself a late birthday present.
Her 17th birthday was on Feb. 17, but on March 6 she rolled games of 268, 248 and 268 for a record-breaking series of 784, just 16 pins short of the elusive 800 series, in the Saturday Adult/Youth League at County Lanes, Westminster.
Brown, a student at Francis Scott Key High School and a resident of Taneytown, threw a 16-pound Red Hammer, one of her favorites in the arsenal of equipment she uses.
Those balls include the X-Caliber, the Purple Hammer, the Nitro, Cobra, Phantom and Blue Hammer. Of course, that ball was fitted and drilled by Chuck Ludwig, owner of County Lanes and operator of the pro shop.
"Chuck's the only one that I'll let drill my bowling balls," Brown said. "He knows my game."
Ludwig knows Brown's game because he also is coaching the future Ladies Professional Bowling Tour player. That could happen as early as this fall.
Brown is practicing approximately 25 games per day, seven days a week at County Lanes. She is averaging in the high 180s.
The 784 series is the house record at County Lanes, and it ties Jean Williford for high series in the Baltimore Women's Bowling Association. Williford's mark has stood since 1982.
Last year the top series posted in the BWBA was Dawn Thacker's 758 on Feb. 11, 1992.
Her goals now include a 300 game and 800 series.
Jim Weaver, manager of County Lanes and a former Professional Bowlers Association member, said, "I think that Angie [Brown] will do great on the LPBT. She's dedicated, and she has the talent."
Putting math studies to use
Alex Dunnigan, who lives in Finksburg and bowls at Westminster Thunderhead, is returning to the lanes after a year's layoff.
"I was busy with school," Dunnigan said. "But since I've graduated I have the time to bowl again."
Dunnigan earned a bachelor of science degree in math from Elizabethtown College near Harrisburg, Pa.
Bowling in two leagues -- the Tuesday 550 league and the Thursday "B" minor league at Thunderhead -- Dunnigan needed his expertise in math to keep track of the series he threw last month.
The 22-year-old, a 133 average bowler, posted games of 142, 104 and 216 for a 462 series. Both the 216 game and the series were career highs.
"I've been bothered with a bad back," he said. "But Tuesday night I was feeling pretty good and I was able to get down low at the line and, of course, I was able to throw the ball a little harder."