Perry Coppersmith, bowling "for at least eight years," lives in Manchester and bowls Tuesday and Friday nights at Hampstead Bowling Center. Last month, he set a house duckpin record.
In the Tuesday Men's Commercial League, he's on the same team with his dad, Harry, and brother Randy.
"Perry is bowling real good this year," Harry said. "His average is usually about 125, but this year it's over 130. The week before he tied the record. He shot a 200 game on the nose."
Perry agreed: "I don't have a reason for it, but I'm bowling better this year."
Starting with a 134 game and finishing with a 130, it was the middle game that tied the house duckpin record at Hampstead.
"I started the second game with two spares, then I had two open frames," he said. "Then I started throwing strikes."
Seven strikes from the fifth frame through the 10th. When the last pin fell the score was a 234 game.
"The funny thing is that the last game I only needed a mark and one pin in the last frame to have a 500 set," Coppersmith said. "I chopped the one-five, picked up nine pins and had to settle for a 498 series."
A fine old ball
Scott Leatherwood of Manchester bowls three nights a week -- Monday in Hanover, Saturday at County Lanes and in the Tuesday Men's League at Hampstead.
"I've been bowling for about eight years now," he said. "And besides the three leagues I try to get some practice games in on the weekend."
A left-handed tenpin bowler with a 200-plus average and a career high of 289, Leatherwood reached into his closet a few weeks ago and pulled out an old bowling ball.
"That Black Hammer [the first Hammer ball ever manufactured] had been sitting in there for about a year," he said. "I've been thinking about a new reactive resin ball but I thought that I would give the ol' ball another chance."
What happened on the lanes at the Hampstead center last month in the Tuesday league may change his mind about another bowling ball.
Leatherwood fired games of 240, 240 and 235 to establish his career high three-game series, a 715 set.
A new duckpin coach
Tom Shutt of Hampstead bowls duckpins on Wednesday and Saturday at the Hampstead Center; on Saturday morning he coaches.
"I've only been coaching for a few weeks," Shutt said. "But it's really a fun experience. And that's what I try to teach the kids, that duckpin bowling is [supposed] to be fun. Sure, I want them to get better to score better, but mostly I want them to have a good time."
Bowling for 15 years, Shutt carries a 136 average.
"I've never had a 200 game, came close with a 198," he said with a laugh. "And I've came close to a 500 set with a 496. One day, hopefully, I'll do both."
Close to perfection
Tom Richards, bowling tenpins in the Tuesday Men's League at Hampstead Bowling Center, trusted his ball.
"He didn't try to kill the pins," said J.B. Wisner, operator of the Pro Shop at Hampstead Lanes. "But his last ball came up a little short."
That was Nov. 8 when Richards had thrown 11 strikes in a row and needed just one more for the perfect game.
The right-hander trusted his ball to come up into the pocket but it was a little light; the four and seven pins stood and Richards had to settle for a 298 game.
Happenings at Hampstead
The fourth annual Turkey Shoot is in action at Hampstead Lanes.
League and Colorama bowlers pay $1 to participate. Anyone who throws a strike in the third, sixth and ninth frame wins a gift certificate.
For ages 7-14, Hampstead Bowling Center is conducting a Bowling Camp-Out next Sunday that will extent into Monday morning, Nov. 28.
There will be unlimited bowling, shoes, games, movies, breakfast and chaperones.
Participants should bring a sleeping bag, sleep wear and a pillow.
Cost is $15, and it runs from 9 p.m. Sunday to 8 a.m. Monday. Breakfast will be served.
Information and reservations: (410) 239-8130.