If something isn't broken, why fix it?
That's the question Rose Schultz and Keri Prigge asked themselves when it came to selecting this year's women's team for the sixth annual Winona/La Crosse Bowling Challenge, which will be held the weekend of Oct. 14-15.
After putting together an impressive second day a year ago to defeat La Crosse 1631?2-1361?2, Schultz and Prigge, who are in their second year as captains of Winona's team, decided to stick with almost the exact same team.
There are only two new faces on this year's squad - Tina Benedict, one of Winona's top up-and-coming bowlers who tossed her first career 700 series last year, and veteran Mary Lou Hazelton, who will be the alternate for the seniors (age 50 and over).
Prigge, last year's city average champion with a 211 average, heads this year's women's team, which also includes three other bowlers - Mandi Steffes (211), Diane Marley (210) and Julie Moldenhauer (201) - that averaged over 200 for the 2005-06 season.
Close behind those four are Krystal Dorman (198), Maggie Glenn (193), Angie Pomeroy (193), Laurie Wiseman (190) and Jenny Glowczewski (190). Rounding out the 20-player team will be Yvonne Guzman (187) and Lexie Boehmke (182) from Rushford, Benedict (188), Lisa Peterson (183), Shirley Benedict (182) and Sue Invgaldson (181). Dawn Dunbar (180) will serve as the alternate.
Winona's senior team will be the exact same as last year with Keri Wegman (195), Sue Buermann (189), Lynda Krall (180), Schultz (179) and Bev Porter (169), with Hazelton (176) as the alternate.
La Crosse will throw a solid team at Winona, which still trails 3-2 in the first five years of the event. Patti Muenzenberger (202) and Ellyn Sosalla (201) had the top two averages for La Crosse a year ago. They also have six others bowlers who averaged better than 190. La Crosse captains Sosalla and Lynn Lenz didn't change their team much either, with just two new faces in the lineup.
One big name missing from La Crosse's team is Brittany Burkhamer, who moved out of town. She carried a 226 average two years ago.
For the men
Winona men's captains Dave Hultgren and Brian Dunbar are hoping a combination of youth, experienced tournament bowlers and a pair of new seniors will help lead them to their first-ever win over an impressive roster for La Crosse.
The youth will come from the likes of city average champion Josh Wenzel (237), Geoff Schewe (232), Dale Bartelson (229), Jeff Hubbard (223) and Jeff Smelser (222). Throw in veterans like Tod Walters (228), Brian Fakler (225), Greg Fakler (223), John Glowczewski (221), Mike Durnen (221) and Seth Bonow (218), and it looks like a very solid team Winona will put on the lanes.
The rest of the roster includes Nick Heilman (225), last year's Winona Bowling Association City Tournament all-events scratch champion, Dunbar (216), Steve Walters (211) and Bob Prenot (206). Serving as alternates will be Rick Prenot (215) and Mark Walters (213).
Winona's senior team should get a boost from its newest senior, Greg Schewe (229), who just turned 50. Bill Bonow (224) also joins the team. Those two will be joined by returners Rod Storm (216), Tom Donnelly (215) and Steve Maliszewski (213). Ross Harrison (203) will be the alternate.
La Crosse has dominated Winona last year in the matches held in La Crosse, but Winona has been able to hold its own at Westgate Bowl and Winona Bowl.
La Crosse's team features six bowlers that will be competing in the event for the first time. Chaz Callan (233), Don Luce Jr. (233) and Chad Feyen (232) carried the top averages in the 2005-06 season.
The first day of the Bowling Challenge on Saturday, Oct. 14, will be held in Winona. The men will bowl at 1:30 p.m. at Winona Bowl and the women at 5:30 p.m. at Westgate Bowl. Singles matches and alternate-shot doubles matches will be held on Day 1.
The competition switches to La Crosse on Sunday, Oct. 15, with the women bowling at 1:30 p.m. at Pla-Mor Lanes and the men at 5:30 p.m. at All-Star Lanes. Day 2 consists of doubles matches and Baker team matches.
There is 150 points available each day and 300 points for the weekend. All that's at stake is a traveling trophy for the winning teams and bragging rights for a year. The event is a USBC sanctioned tournament.
Some people just make it look so easy.
While most of us are shaking off the rust of a long summer without bowling, Mandi Steffes and Brian Fakler began their seasons just the way last year's ended.
Steffes got her season off to a flying start on Monday in the Pin Topplers League at Westgate Bowl with the first women's 700 of the season - a 734 (231-279-224). She came back Wednesday night in the Mixers League with a 637 series.
Fakler, meanwhile, started the first night of the City League at Winona Bowl on Monday in flying fashion with a 300 his very first game. He finished with a 713 season. Two of his teammates, Larry Betchwars (722) and Jerry Bublitz (712), also rolled honor counts.
Nick Heilman turned in the top men's score of the season Tuesday night in the American League at Westgate with a 744 series. That was four pins better than Dale Bartelson in the same league.
John Glowczewski (734, 713) and Mike Durnen (721, 709) have both rolled a pair of honor counts early this season.
Aaron Spitzer joined Fakler by starting his season out with a perfect game. Spitzer's came in the Action League at Westgate.
Krystal Dorman and Angie Pomeroy are both off to fast starts at Winona Bowl. Dorman has fired scores of 671, 617 and 611, while Pomeroy has also turned in three honor counts (665, 623 and 616).