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Gold Dust West senior bowlers among best around

Carson City can boast of two of the best senior bowling leagues around at the Gold Dust West Bowling Center ” and when one says around that claim is really referring to all of the West Coast.

There’s a large contingent of senior bowlers ages 50 and up who make up the majority of those who bowl during the day. While there are many male and female senior bowlers in various leagues at local bowling centers, two of the top leagues are the Monday Men’s Senior Scratch Trio and the Thursday Seniior Men’s Scratch Trio at the Gold Dust West.

Both leagues held during the day feature a total of 90 bowlers ranging in ages from 53 to 87. Each league had 15 three-man teams consisting of 45 bowlers.

It’s a 33-week season in each league with the season beginning in August and running through April. Last year the leagues had first half and second half champions, but since the leagues’ secretary/treasurer, Bob Scott, was on one of the league’s teams that won both halves, he decided a change should be made. “That isn’t really fair,” Scott said to himself.

So this year the leagues’ seasons have been divided into quarters with the first quarter just completed. No team can win more than one quarter championship, guaranteeing that four teams in each league will compete in a playoff to determine that league’s champion.

Scott said he was told by one of the leagues’ competitors who used to manage bowling alley in Southern California that the leagues are two of the premier senior leagues on the West Coast.

And for good reason. Out of the 2,187 sanctioned bowlers for 2007-2008 in the Carson Country United States Bowling Congress at the Gold Dust West, Carson Lanes, Silver Strike Lanes and Bowl Incline, the two senior leagues had 40 percent of the bowlers in the association with a 200 average or better.

During 2007-2008 the two leagues had a total of seven 300 games and so far this season, the leagues have had two 300 games, a 299 game and a 298 game.

In the Thursday league, Fred Taylor and Ken Luther have each bowled a 300 game and Steve Spurgin rolled an 805 series. In the Monday league, Wally Harrison and Bill Baker have each rolled a 299.

Baker knows about success. He’s also served as an advisor for the Carson bowling club, which has never lost in high school competition.

But even though the caliber of bowling is high, Scott stressed the competition is friendly. “The first priority is to have fun,” he said.

This season the Monday and Thursday leagues have asked local businesses to support the senior bowlers by sponsoring teams in each league, which several businesses have done. The leagues in turn have purchased shirts for each of the bowlers with the sponsor’s name on the back. So it’s likely that many of these senior bowlers can be seen wearing their bowling shirts around town as they run errands, go shopping or stop at their favorite restaurant after bowling.