Shawn Stanton doesn't believe in spending a fortune on new tenpin balls.
"I usually buy one new ball each season," the Pasadena resident said. "Last spring I got a raspberry X-Caliber. That's the first reactive resin ball I've ever owned, and it does carry the pins."
On the first night of the 1993-94 season, it carried great. Stanton bowls in two leagues at Fair Lanes Southdale -- the Tuesday Coors Silver Bullet and the Monday Pro/Am -- and a Sunday league at Bowl America Glen Burnie.
Stanton considers his bowling style to be down-and-in.
"I'm really a stroker," he said. "I've never had the big hook that a lot of guys throw today."
With the reactive resin bowling balls, you don't need the big hook. A stroker's ball still will deliver a lot of power when it strikes the pins. The first night in the Coors Silver Bullet league, Stanton proved that.
The 192-average bowler fired his career high game and series that night. With workmanlike first and third games of 228 and 213, respectively, Stanton pounded out his his first 300 game for a 741 series.
A different way
Eddie Wirt of Severn has been bowling duckpins for 30 years a bit differently than other bowlers.
He throws the ball with two hands.
"Last season I took off because of a back problem," he said. "But I started bowling at Southwest when I was 6 years old, and this year I'm bowling in the Thursday night quads here."
The season before (1991-92), Wirt carried a 129 average in the Friday Night Travel League. His career high game is 230, his high series 530.
"Before I hurt my back I was averaging in the 140s," he said. "I'd like to get my average up again to about that."
Wirt has just started working as guest facilities manager at Fair Lanes Southwest this month.
"I wanted to work around duckpins," he said. "And this is a chance to do it."
For 13 years he worked for Chicago Metalic. Now with an income that his father provided for him after winning the Maryland lottery three years ago, Wirt can do whatever he likes. And he likes duckpins.
A helping hand
Steve Sandusky, proprietor of Riviera Bowl in Pasadena, is reaching out to the duckpin bowlers whose equipment was destroyed in the Greenway Glen Burnie fire.
"Any Greenway bowler can come into Riviera Bowl and replace their lost equipment, balls, bags and shoes, at cost," he said.
"If they want to bowl here at Riviera Bowl, we'll do all we can to accommodate them, but no matter where they bowl we'll still replace their lost duckpin equipment at cost."
Last day to enter tourney
The Severna Park Women's Bowling Association will play host to the Invitational 500 Tournament at Annapolis Bowl, Nov. 20-21. Today is the last day for entries into this handicap event. Entry fee is $16.