Over the July 4th weekend, 746 amateur bowlers competed in the National Amateur Bowlers Inc. Firecracker Open at Crofton Bowling Centre . That's right, 746 people spent their midsummer holiday bowling.
For four days they fought on the tenpin lanes for a total prize of $25,651, including a $3,000 first-place prize. Even 30th place was worth $150.
Hector Romero of Annadale, Va., captured the big money. Ray Hill of Severn took second and $1,500.
Jimmy Sellers of Capitol Heights and Danny Mitchell of Forestville tied for third: each received $1,000.
Fifth to eighth places were good for $600. Davidsonville's Gary ,, Carrick picked up one of those checks with a seventh-place finish.
Hill, who has a 176 average, started bowling as teen-ager.
"Last year, I bowled in one league, Fridays at Bowl America Odenton," he said. "This year, I'm just bowling the NABI tournaments."
Carrick and his wife, Regina, are regulars in NABI tournaments.
Regina has a 160 average and in 1991 won a NABI tournament; Garywon a tournament in 1990.
Gary carries a 180 average, bowls in two winter leagues, the Monday Budweiser at Fair Lanes Annapolis and the Thursday Early Bird at Crofton Bowling Centre. His career-high game is 268, his high series is 660.
The next NABI tournament will be tomorrow and Sunday at Brunswick Perry Hall. First place is a guaranteed $1,000. Call (410) 256-6300.
NABI will be at Annandale Bowl July 24 and 25. First place will pay a guaranteed $1,500. Information: (703) 256-2211.
Riviera Bowl in Pasadena will have a Dream League this fall on Thursday nights. It will consist of 500 scratch mixed quads.
There will be $17,000 in prize money. Call (410) 255-3550.