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Bowling News USA - March 29, 2011 Judy Gurney Rolls to Golden Ladies Classic Title...

(Pictured: Storm Regional Sales Manager Lee Upp, tournament organizer Jeanette Robinson, champion Judy Gurney, and tournament director Darryl Smith of the Orleans.)

Judy Gurney of Omaha, Neb, defeated tournament leader Terri Ward of Loveland, Col., 265-194, to take home the 2011 Golden Ladies title and the $2,000 first prize. The 57-year-old systems analyst for an insurance company, a former Women's International Bowling Congress doubles champion, topped a field of 84 women - all over the age of 50 - in the 21st edition of the scratch bowling event for ladies held annually at The Orleans Casino and Bowling Center in Las Vegas.

The tournament was sponsored by Storm Products.

The stepladder finals for the top five bowlers began with Char Hammel of Las Vegas, defeating former Team USA member Luci Sandelin, Tampa, FL, 234-205. Sandelin hit her ankle so hard in her third frame delivery that play had to be stopped momentarily to determine if she could continue. Sandelin gamely converted her spare but couldn't regain any momentum.

In match two Hammel defeated qualifying leader Jeanne Naccarato of Tacoma, Wash, 257-214, after Naccarato left a pocket 7-10 in the eighth frame. Naccarato had led the qualifying with a 15 game average of 237.

Hammel looked to having the semifinal match against Gurney well in hand, needing only a mark in the tenth frame to win but a slight error in her downswing caused her to leave the 8-10 split. Gurney s(right) ealed the deal by striking out in the tenth frame to win the match, 247-235.

The championship match pitted Gurney against tournament leader Ward, a first timer in the event who had been steady all through qualifying and match play but the pressure proved to be the undoing of Ward who rolled one of her lower games of the week against Gurney.

For her stellar performance Gurney received $2,000, the trophy, and a free entry into next year's event. Runner-up Ward was awarded $1,150. Third place Hammel received $800, fourth place Naccarato $700, and fifth Sandelin $550.

Other finalists were: sixth - Debbie McMullen, Denver, $380; Virginia Norton, Cypress, CA $375; 8th Pam Lawrence, Pflugerville, TX, $370; 9th Terri Stynes, Mountain View, CA, $365; 10th Pam Buckner, Reno, NV, $360; 11th Karen Miller, Las Vegas, $355; 12th Jan Thomas, Urbandale, IA, $350; 13th Carole Jones, Englewood, CO, $345 14th Joan Reilly, Wilmington, NC, $340;15th Lisa Vint, Troy, WI, $335; 16th Karen Smith, San Marcos, CA/Paula Vidad, Sun City, CA(Vidad replaced Smith – injury) $330 17th Sandy Postma, Lansing, IL, $325; 18th Dee Price, Stockton, CA, $325.

In the Super Senior division (bowlers over age 60) Connie Palmer of El Cajon, Calif, outpaced the field to take home the trophy and $1,000. Other finalists were second Lela Larkin, Medford, OR, $700; third Angela Scott, Moreno Valley, CA, $550; fourth Vesma Grinfelds, San Francisco, $450; fifth Bennie Gemello, Tucson, AZ, $400; sixth Sue Mivelaz-West, Tujunga, CA, $375; 7th Loretta Hoffman, Wichita, KS, $350; 8th Olivia Rice, Baltimore, $325; 9th A Rose Williams, Yorba Linda, CA, $300; 10th Donna Donohue, La Mesa, CA, $275; 11th Jude Ann Cobler, Las Vegas, $250; 12th Gloria Frazier, Vidor, TX $225.

Winners in the Second Chance Sweeper were Candy Sylvia, Felton, CA, $250; Jackie Wyckoff, Campbell, CA $225; Lori Wilkinson, Temecula, CA, $175; Marci Williams, Wichita, KS, $145; Lil Johnson, Lawton, OK, $115; Janine Ditch, Chino Hills, CA, $90.

Story, photos and results courtesy of Fran Deken.

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March, 2011