Jim Graefe was bowling PBA Regionals back in the 1980s and often made match play but never could quite manage to win.
The Wisconsin righty took many years off to focus on his family, but eventually returned to the PBA after he turned 50.
And he finally won a title on Saturday in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, when he defeated Kenny Parks 215-211 to win the PBA Lancer Lanes Chameleon Open.
Couldn't happen to a nicer guy! Congrats to Jim on a well deserved win!
First was $1,100 and second $800.
Graefe advanced to the title match with wins over Todd Kjell and Curt Aemisigger, while Parks downed Henry Gonzalez and myself.
I had to salute Parks as I beat him 237-201 the first game in the best 2-of-3 and could have locked him out in the 10th frame of game 2 but went flush strike, ring 10-pin and spare for 254, enabling him to win by a pin with three strikes.
He went flush strike, flush strike, blower strike for a 255-254 win.
Parks then made it 17 straight strikes (with a Storm MARVEL PEARL) before a ring 10-pin left him with “only” a 289 to my 211.
What can you say to that other than “Great job!”?
In the title match, Parks left 4-pins in both the seventh and ninth frames, with his only bad shot being a washout in the sixth frame. He doubled in the 10th to force Graefe to mark, which Graefe did by leaving a weak 10-pin and converting. The fill ball strike gave him the 215-211 win.
The tournament was contested on the Chameleon pattern. There were 33 entries with eight making match play and 11 cashing. After the six games of qualifying, eighth was 1,390 and 11th was 1,380.
Full results are here.
Lancer Lanes has old wood lanes with Guardian and the conditions were like the weather: wait a few minutes and they will change. That's what made the tournament so fun to bowl, though.
I started with an IQ with some surface and moved to a FRANTIC, a VIRUAL ENERGY and a REIGN SUPREME, starting around 10-board and moving into near 20-board by the end of qualifying.
Move, move, move. Think, think, think.
The key in my loss in the third game to Parks was my fourth frame — after leaving a solid 9-pin in the second I tried to throw it harder, rather than moving in. Big 4. End of game essentially.