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calendar   Thursday - May 29, 2014

Death By Handicap

No, this is not one of those “special needs gone wrong” stories. It’s just another bowling post.

We got our 4th teammate last night, a young woman who went through college on a bowling scholarship. Oh yeah. She’s goood. Ok, she wasn’t rolling 290s, but her approach form is classical and fluid, and her spares game is just about perfect. With a 205 book average, we set her up as anchor right away. I did acceptably well the first two games, rolling 12 and 27 over average respectively. But then conditions broke down in the third game, and I couldn’t figure things out. I moved left, I threw right. I moved up and then back. No matter what I did, the ball would either cross over or come in really high to the pocket. Plus, suddenly I was tired and achy. Age. Anyway, after 5 opens and an abhorrent score of 59 in the 7th frame, I just said to hell with it and enlarged my approach to throw a faster ball. You never want to muscle the ball because you’ll almost always pull the shot to the left. The better way is to start out with a higher push away, which gives you a larger pendulum arm swing, which requires you to take bigger steps to keep the timing right ... all of which adds up to the ball being launched at a higher speed. And that did it; I was able to pile on a bunch of strikes to finish only a bit low with a 169.

But I’m pretty sure we lost all 3 games last night, even though we won them all hugely in terms of raw scores. Heck, we won two of them by more than 200 pins. But we were bowling a team of beginners, and half of them were bowling for average. And that’s a terrible situation, because they’re going to get a massive handicap (one of their bowlers has an 81 average now), but you won’t know what it is until after the bowling is over for the whole night. And summer league is a 90% handicap affair. So ... grrr ... at the end of the night it looked like we were giving them 213 pins per game. That’s a mighty hurdle to overcome even when you know about it in advance. Ex post facto, it’s a real kick in the nutz.

Ah well. At least we had a nice time, and our new teamie seems like a nice person. A little bit quiet and reserved, but we can cure that. Mwahahhaahaha.



Thoughts on summer league: Since it is a very short season, usually only 12 to 15 weeks, keeping the winter season practice of using your entering book average for the first 9 games rolled may not be the best idea. That’s a fifth to a quarter of the season. Too long, and not really fair. The reason it isn’t fair is because other bowlers, those without established book averages, have a dynamic average for those games. Better might be to use the book average for the first 3 games only, then weigh that in equally with what you roll the first night to give you your average for Week 2, and thereafter to base your weekly average on total pins rolled. And for newbies without a book average, they use the Vacancy score as their average for the first 3 games, which is then weighed equally with their results from Week 1 for their average for Week 2, and thereafter based on total pins rolled. That might alleviate some of these blind hammer beat downs like the one we got slammed with last night. You’d have to keep the vacancy score low though; 100 or 120 instead of the 150 or 170 used by the better leagues.

Examples:

Yup, that’s pretty fair. Newbies only get a small bite in weeks 1 and 2, but they’re also getting a 90% handicap which makes up for a lot of that. Using a lower vacancy score of 110 will soften that by a couple pins. 

Yeah, and we would have won at least 12 out of 20 if we’d been using the Average Sorted Match Point handicap method too. Team handicap is so 1958; it’s well past it’s use-by date. Might have to change it a bit to make the maximum handicap per pairing 50 pins instead of 30, which would allow a 145 bowler to play against a 201 bowler.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 05/29/2014 at 01:08 PM   
Filed Under: • Bowling Blogging •  
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