Friday, April 28, 2017


Ball Reps Are Professional Consultants

  Professional bowlers have a great amount of respect for their "ball reps" who follow them from tour stop to tour stop offering highly technical advise on what ball or balls works best of the condition the PBA members are shooting on.

  Since we previously covered  a number of the PBA tour stops on the East Coast we became very familiar as to what these "ball reps" or tour consultants do and at a pro-tour stop in Cheektowaga we sat down with Chris Schlemer, at that time the pro-tour technical consultant for Storm and Roto-Grip who now serves the company as  their Roto Grip brand manager.

  When I used the term "ball rep" Chris's business card at that time clearly said he was a "Technical Consultant and Pro Tour Consultant."

  Schlemer, originally from Troy, Ill. near St. Louis came on board with Storm in the spring of 2001 and previously was a tour rep for Visionary on the former Professional Women's Bowling Association (PWBA) tour.     While with the women's tour Chris drilled bowling balls and assisted giving the lady bowlers advise on the Visionary bowling products.

  Some  ago at about the age of 20 and 21 Chris was an active league bowler and became an accomplished bowler from both the right and left side. He kept a 230 average bowling right handed and a 200 average bowling left handed.

  His college education produced a degree in computers and graphics which has proved to be a great benefit in him becoming an accomplished Technical Pro Tour Consultant.

  Schlemer pointed out at that time that he had to know the Radium of Gyration (RG) of each of the Storm and Roto-Grip bowling balls and the differential of the bowling shot laid down. He  noted that the Professional Bowling Association (PBA) tweaks (changes) their shots so that they are new each bowling season.

  Bowling balls have a RD converted to a scale of 1-10. RG numbers range from 2.430 to 2.800, but some companies have converted them to a 1-10 scale to help give the consumer a better frame of reference. Mass distribution numbers describe the distribution  of mass in the bowling ball. High RG numbers indicate that the balls mass is distributed more towards the cover (cover heavy) which promotes length through the heads of the bowling lane. Low RG numbers indicate that the balls mass is distributed more towards the center (center heavy) which promotes an earlier roll through the front part of the lane.

  Chris pointed out that the difference between the maximum and minimum Radius of Gyration is that the RG-differential indicates the bowing ball's track flare potential and the higher the number the greater the track flare potential.

  In talking with Chris it became very clear that the technical consultant has to know his stuff which includes the knowledge of his company's bowling balls on all PBA shot conditions. He also has to know his bowlers well and that includes their timing, releases and their personalities (which he calls a key factor.) 

  These ball reps have to be very  professional and bowling knowledge is a key to them doing the job they perform.

  Bowling Tip

By Mike Luongo

    Bowlers: This week's tip applies mostly to those bowlers who are using modern bowling balls.

    You may not know that the modern bowling ball is porous with several different densities and has numerous chemicals in the cover stock.

   As these balls change temperature, the cover and core will expand and contract. Due to the different materials used for the core, inner core and cover, this fluctuation occurs at different rates.  Leaving the ball in a car when temperatures are severe, very hot or very cold, the expansion and contraction causes severe stress on the cover. This stress is even greater when a cold ball is used to bowl while it is still cold.

   This may cause your ball to crack. So this tip is not only educational but let it serve as a reminder to take care of your bowling ball investment--avoid the experience that some bowlers are going through--and if you carry your balls to and from the center, don't leave them in your car.

  Mike Luongo is technically certified through IBPSIA as a Pro Shop Operator. Master Instructor, a Silver Level Coach with the USBC and is also an Advisor and Special Events Assistant with the Storm and Roto Grip Bowling Ball Company. If you have a question or subject you would like covered, he can be reached by email at

Ed's Outlook

  Many local bowling leagues have completed the 2016-17 season. To the many league champions we offer our sincere congratulations. The long 32 week seasons that start in early September now give way to summer leagues which mostly run during the months of June-August.

  This will be our wrap-up  bowling column for this season, we thank the local bowling establishments and league secretaries for their cooperation in getting the league and honor scores to us.
  We will return with Bowling Highlights in September but now it is on to our Golfing Highlights starting next week.

PBA League


  The underdog Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen and the defending champion Shipyard Dallas Strikers got the fifth edition of the L.L. Beam PBA League Elias Cup Competion off to a roaring  start with sudden-death victories in front of a sold-out crowd last Sunday afternoon at Bayside Bowl in Portland, Maine and aired on ESPN.
  Tom Smallwood won the sudden-death (one ball playoff) for the Hitmen and crowd-favorite Norm Duke got the one-ball roll-off strike for the Strikers.

  The PBA league playoffs continues Sunday at 1 p.m. on ESPN.

Local Scores

Kiamesha Lanes

Monday Men's

  With some of the lowest scores recorded this season the limited highlights for this league found Jody Farquhar with the single high game of 235 and the high series of  617.  The only other 200 plus games saw Jon Wilhelm with a 223 and Kevin Stackhouse 216.

Tues. Mixed Firefighter

  Pedro Agapito III a 274, 697, Shane Cunningham 228, 248, 670, Trasey Barres 199, 512, Larry Whipple 225, 616, Stanley Gilmore 247, 617, Karen Martin 192, 500, Mike Scuderi 601, Tom Belgiovene 242, 628, Kyle Giordano 264, 637, Jon Wilhelm 651, Linda Schaefer 185, Joan Lake 202, 534, Keith Smith 236, Liz Stubits 192, 189, 190, 571, Dave Graham 600.

Thursday Ladies

  Lisa Cartwright 195, Trasey Barres 199, Connie McKenley 181, 505, Theresa Balzano 192, Kristy Lopez 192, 527, Liz Stubits 181, 189, Christie Graham 194, Mari Jane Conklin 186, Joan Lake 205, 181, 551, Tabatha Smith 198, 181, 545, Dottie Cox 180, Audrey Woolard 196.

  Ed Townsend is a Public Relations Consultant to the sport of bowling and brings over 60-years of sports journalism experience in writing and compiling the information for this column. If you have league or tournament information , bowl a 300 game or 800 series, let Ed know at 845-439-8177, email at or fax at 845-205-4474. View this column and Ed's photos at We are also on Facebook and Twitter.

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