We wrapped things up on a Thursday with the Tournament of Champions team event, and it was a one-two finish for the Monday Night Mixed League, as the "Wolfpack" (comprised of Karlie Skibo, Thomas Harper, Ashley Van Damme, Dave Stone and Keith Bogue) were declared the champions after the three games were completed.
Finishing a close second were the "Unbowlieveables" (comprised of Heather Arthurson, Clayton Arthurson, Calvin Arthurson, Curtis Arthurson, and Guy Lebeau).
Personal best scores were also shot by Thomas Harper, throwing a 369 game, and Aaron Humenny throwing a 1069 four-game total, averaging over 250 in a series for the first time.
The Westman Bowler of the Year event was also held in Carberry at the end of April. Congratulations go to Don Vodree and Laura Cuvelier, both from Boissevain, on impressive performances in the Pins Over Average event.
Congrats also to Westman Team No. 3 (Jodi Brand, Brenda Bradshaw, Leigh Rea, Jim Ball and coach Gary Everard) for winning the 220 Provincial Championships. Also to Westman Team No. 2 (Rayann Paddock, Karen Wear, Mickey Mott, Ken Dixon and coach Debbie Mackie) who battled in a one-game playoff to earn the provincial silver medal.
Both teams played very well at Nationals in Thunder Bay in April — unfortunately no medals, but a lot of fun was had!
This season saw quite a bit of excitement at Thunderbird Bowl.
Scoring was higher than ever, especially during the Canadian Open Manitoba Provincial Championships on Easter weekend, where Brandon’s first ever Perfect Game was thrown by Winnipeg’s Trevor Cook during the Team Round Robin.
Brandon bowlers have bowled Perfect Games elsewhere, and have had some close calls this season at Thunderbird, but never before has one been thrown in the city. It was thrilling to see, especially under the pressure of a provincial championship.
You may have also seen the Men’s and Women’s Provincial Singles Championship finals on WGC-TV, where Brad Rusnak reigned supreme, averaging 295 through 11 games and bringing Westman its first provincial singles title since Brad Ball’s win in 2005.
Brad has won the Manitoba Masters Singles Championship the previous two years, and we are hoping "third time is the charm" for him.
Christy Wilson-Michaluk from Carman (Central) won the Women’s Provincial Title.
Also qualifying for Nationals in Gatineau, Quebec, was Westman’s Garry Hamm, who also averaged over 290 through the Team Round Robin event to put himself on the Manitoba Mixed Team. Last year, Garry was on the provincial mixed team that won silver at the nationals, so we’re sure one goal is on their minds this time around.
I would also like to recognize the Westman Women’s Team, consisting of Nicole Sentner, Michelle Brown, April Rusnak, Cheryl Burke, Ashley Van Damme, Gisele Sayer and coach Sylvia Swaenepoel, who gave Winnipeg a good run in the championship finals.
We’ll also be keeping our eyes on the Manitoba Masters situation in the next couple weeks.
Brad and Garry are both in the running to be competing for Team Manitoba at the nationals in St. John’s, Nfld., in the Tournament Men’s Division. Also in the running from Westman is Michelle Brown in the Teaching Ladies Division, and Gisele Sayer in the Senior Division.
The final qualifying tournament was May 12 in Winnipeg, and nationals will be held at the end of June.
Overall, it was another fantastic season of bowling in Brandon and Westman!
And on behalf of the Brandon executive and Westman 5 Pin Bowlers Association, we would like to congratulate all our members, coaches, and staff on a great season full of excitement, personal bests, league and provincial championships. Good luck to those moving on to their respective national events!
We are always looking for new members and teams to join us. If you are interested, you can contact Thunderbird Bowl directly for information on mixed, men’s and women’s leagues throughout the week.
We wish everyone a great summer, and look forward to another exciting season starting in September!
» Brad Rusnak is the secretary for the Westman 5 Pin Bowlers Association
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition May 17, 2012