If you bowled in the Fraternal league last week at Hood River’s Orchard Lanes, you had a pretty good chance to make the Team of the Week. In fact, every member of this week’s fab five blistered the boards in Fraternal action.
First up is the ultimate striking machine, Brandon Kawachi, who exploded out of a nasty slump and notched the highest series of the current season at the lanes: a glitzy 760 that included a big 276 game. Brandon has been deeply mired in the mud up to this point in the season, averaging a little over 180 pins per game. But that’s all over now. For a bowler of his caliber to end up 217 pins over his average is quite amazing, but that needs to be tempered a bit because he finished last season with a 220-plus average. He is that good. We’ve seen him toss more perfect 300 games and award-winning 800 series than you can shake a stick at. In fact, he’s earned so many high score rings from the governing body of bowling that they are about as bankrupt as the U.S. government!
Once again, as he routinely does in work and play (no matter the weather, rain or shine, snow or wind), Bryan Mason delivered the goods. This time it was a solid 738 series that was capped by a 276 game in the Fraternal, good enough to be second on the big five. Brawny Bryan handles that heavy bowling ball like it was a toy, firing it with great speed and plenty of revs. He is definitely at home on the friendly maples at Orchard Lanes.
Mighty Casey Barker struck time and time again to post a solid 729 set in the Fraternal for the third spot on our team of the week. Casey’s big night was highlighted by a 278 game. It’s very interesting to watch Casey bowl; he plays the lanes deep inside and uses loft to project the ball more directly at the pins. And it works really well: His ball saves up all its energy until it impacts the pins; they simply explode off the deck. Casey, otherwise known as Mr. Excitement because he is the most enthusiastic bowler you will ever see, enjoys every second of this great game. He is carrying a lofty 222 average, the most improved bowler in town.
Getting the cleanup spot on the top five was smooth Michael Allen, who also cracked the magical 700 mark in the Fraternal with a nice 706 series that included a 267 game. Michael’s game is pretty much the direct opposite of the previous three stars who employ power to bash the sticks. He is a finesse artist who lets the ball do the work instead of working the ball. Goes to show you, there are many ways to be successful in tenpins.
Finally, the anchorman on our big squad this week is Pat Olson, proprietor of Orchard Lanes and a man who wears many hats in that job. Not only is he talented in his work, he is a heck of a bowler, and always one of the top shooters in town. This time he just missed 700 with a 699 in the Fraternal that was sparked by a 279 game. Pat is usually a very talented down-the-board’s player, but this year he’s more inside as he works on expanding his repertoire to get in shape for tournament action.
Team of the Week:
Brandon Kawachi, 760
Bryan Mason (3), 738
Casey Barker (2), 729
Michael Allen, 706
Pat Olson (3), 699