Centre Bowl wins provincial Open women’s title

Corner Brook native Sara Kennedy nabs women’s singles crown

Dave Kearsey dkearsey@thewesternstar.com
Published on March 16, 2014

CORNER BROOK  Erin Power finished with a flurry as the Corner Brook Centre Bowl women earned a trip to nationals in Calgary by downing Holiday Lanes in the final at the 2014 Open.

Power held the hot hand in the final game with a 374 single, marking up eight strikes in a row and finishing with 10 overall as the host team beat Holiday Lanes 6-2 with an intense fan base looking on from the sidelines. The host team had to beat Holiday Lanes, featuring Corner Brook natives Sara Kennedy and Erica Legge,  twice to win the title because the St. John’s entry finished in top spot.

The host women’s team, again by  a 6-2 point spread, won the first game in a close battle on the hardwood with Power and her teammates Tina Battiste, Meghan Davis, LeAnn Tucker, Sasha Lockyer and Kathy Lukeman taking it one ball at a time in an effort to win back-to-back games for the crown.

“Being anchor you just need to keep it together for your team and you need to kind of pace it,” Power said of rallying to win the title. “Make sure that you give it your all for them because it comes down to you in the end when it’s close. When it’s far away it don’t matter you got to throw a shot so thank God I made sure it happened. I don’t know how but it happened.”

Power said the team discussed how to approach the final knowing they had to beat the townies twice to win the title.

“We just all said we didn’t had a game yet together,” she said. “There were games during the tournament where some people bowled good and some bad and we we’re kind of picking each other up to win games. But, this game we said let’s take it one game at a time and bowl as a team. That’s what we did. We finished strong. We kept the marks going and we kept the chatter going and luckily we pulled out that game.”

Power has been to four national five-pin bowling championships in her stellar amateur career, but the venture to Calgary will be her first as a member of a Corner Brook Centre Bowl entry.

She might have been in the spotlight with a perfect game within her grasp after eight frames, but she was quick to praise the group she surrounded herself with for a shot at the women’s crown on home turf.

 “I love my team,” she said. “They are so sweet and supportive. There’s nothing better than bowling with these girls.”

Power’s teammates for the ride to the top included Meghan Davis, Sasha Lockyer, Tina Battiste, LeAnn Tucker, Kathy Lukeman and coach Bob Hicks.

Sara Kennedy of Holiday Lanes didn’t get the result she wanted having to settle for silver, but she was gracious in defeat.

“It was good bowling. Erin threw extemely well,” she said. “I say if a team can come back and beat you twice then they deserve to win.”

However, Kennedy would get to earn a trip to Calgary later in the day, winning the women’s singles crown by defeating fellow Holiday Lanes kegler Melissa Manor in back-to-back games in Saturday’s stepladder playoff, which was made necessary when Manor finished first overall.

Kennedy, who is 23, was pretty emotional after beating one of her friends to claim the title as tears flowed down her  cheek.

“That was probably the hardest thing I ever did because I had to go against one of my teammates,” Kennedy said. “It was very emotional. I wanted her to do well. She struggled and it killed me to see her struggle, but the best thing is she’s going to Calgary with me.”

Kennedy earned a showdown with Manor by beating Erin Power of Corner Brook along the way. Kennedy had a 191 single in her showdown with Power, who tossed a 182 game after beating Corner Brook native Erica Legge of Holiday Lanes and Lindsay Tobin, also of Holiday Lanes of St. John’s on the path to the final.

The Corner Brook Centre Bowl mixed team — Clarence Bennett, Genevieve Budgell, Christine Peckford, Stephen Woods (a replacement for injured Paul Brake of Grand Falls-Windsor), Troy Pardy and Tracy Tiller — had to settle for second spot after being defeated twice in the final showdown by St. Pat’s Lanes.

The two teams actually played three games, with the first one ended in a tie thus the game was wiped clean off the books and then the east coast bowlers took control with two straight wins to disappoint the hometown fans out in full force at the Corner Brook Centre Bowl.

Corner Brook native Steve Peddle earned a trip to nationals on the men’s side with St. Pat’s Lanes taking the crown by downing Paradise Bowl in 7-1 in the first and only game of the final showdown. The other members of the winning men’s team bound for Calgary included Lee Escott, Kelley Hann, David Hann Jr., Scott Thurston, Chris Harris and coach Kevin O’Leary.

The Corner Brook Centre Bowl men’s team didn’t make the stepladder final after finishing at the bottom of the pack in a four-team field.

Terry Blake made a gallant effort in his attempt to win the men’s singles title, but in the end he couldn’t beat Shane Chafe of Paradise Bowl twice as the top gun in the men’s stepladder final. Blake won the first matchup by 10 points with a 266 single, but Chafe roared back to fire a 268 game against Blake’s 231 single in the second game to put a halt to the Corner Brook keglers vision of competing on the national scene once again.

Blake rolled a 294 single in a head-to-head showdown with Bob Osborne of Holiday Lanes (219 single) in his first game of the stepladder final after entering Saturday’s action in third spot of the top five bowlers who advanced.