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2021 USBC Youth Ambassadors

Ed Townsend - Columnist
Posted 3/25/21

Brooklyn Gagnon of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Julian Salinas of Richmond, Texas, have been selected by the International Bowling Campus Youth Committee as the 2021 United States Bowling Congress …

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2021 USBC Youth Ambassadors


Brooklyn Gagnon of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Julian Salinas of Richmond, Texas, have been selected by the International Bowling Campus Youth Committee as the 2021 United States Bowling Congress Youth Ambassadors of the Year.

The annual award recognizes one female and one male USBC Youth bowler for exemplary academic accomplishments, community involvement and contributions to the sport of bowling outside of league or tournament play.

Winners are chosen based on submitted applications, and each will receive a $1,500 scholarship.

Gagnon, 18, is a senior at Lincoln High School, where she maintains a 3.9 GPA, challenging herself academically with a variety of accelerated and Advanced Placement classes and a focus on mathematics. She is a member of the National Math Honor Society and intends to build upon her classroom skills at Wichita State University, majoring in mathematics/statistics, with a minor in accounting.

"This is a very prestigious award, and I was super excited to be chosen, because it shows that all the work is being recognized, not only in Sioux Falls, but nationally, and that really means a lot," said Gagnon, who also will bowl collegiately for Wichita State. "Heading into college and into the next stage of my career, this definitely will be a boost for my confidence. I hope to continue to learn and potentially get my foot in the door with the IBC Youth Committee. It would be an honor to serve at the highest level."

Gagnon currently serves as a youth director on the Sioux Falls Regional USBC Board of Directors, helping implement ideas for growing and promoting youth bowling in the area.

As part of the Programs Committee, she is responsible for getting the word out about the organization's upcoming events. Her service includes being part of the Audit/Finance, Youth and Publicity Committees.

In 2019, Gagnon put all her skills to use in the facilitation of the Next Big Thing Scholarship Tournament, an event that drew more than 50 youth bowlers from multiple states to Sioux Falls and awarded more than $5,000 in scholarship money.

Along with rallying her fellow youth bowlers to join her on the lanes and at events, or offering tips as a mentor to youth bowlers under 12, Gagnon has been able to help the local community in many ways through the Bowling Volunteer Group. Her volunteering efforts include working with Feeding South Dakota, Rake the Town, the Sioux Falls Marathon, Project Warm Up and the Serve & Learn Student Association.

On the lanes, she was named South Dakota Bowler of the Year in 2018 and 2019. She has a high game of 300 and a high series of 763 and has challenged herself by seeking out top-tier youth events, including local and state scholarship tournaments, the Chicago-area's Elite Youth Tour and Storm Youth Championships.

Gagnon recently helped Lincoln High School to its second girls state bowling championship, a feat she also accomplished twice as a member of the bowling team at Roosevelt High School. She also has been named the 2021 South Dakota Star of Tomorrow.

In the future, Gagnon hopes to build on all the activities and passions that helped her become a 2021 USBC Youth Ambassador of the Year.

"One of my top goals is to be on the PWBA Tour one day, and I know bowling at Wichita State will help with that," Gagnon said. "I also take incredible pride in my schoolwork, and I love numbers, so I hope that allows me to someday work in banking. No matter what, I'll always love bowling and promoting the sport. I plan to continue serving on the local board, and hopefully at the national level, where I can continue to learn and contribute."

Salinas, also 18, is a senior at Churchill Fulshear High School and a 2020 inductee into the National Honor Society. He has a 4.1892 GPA and is ranked 87th in his class of 363 students.

His academic excellence and bowling goals led him to the Savannah College of Art & Design, where he'll bowl collegiately and major in user experience (UX) design, which focuses on how people interact with products and the quality of their experience with those products.

"I was honored just to be nominated for this award," Salinas said. "To find out the news, there was a lot of excitement and some validation in seeing all of the hard work starting to pay off."

Salinas also is a skilled artist and musician, often using his skills or creations to help raise money at fundraisers or charity events.

For the last few years, his artwork has been auctioned off to raise money during a variety of local and regional bowling events, including the annual Professional Bowlers Association/Professional Women's Bowling Association Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles Tournament in Houston.

"Especially with school, I've always tried to make each thing I do my top priority," Salinas said. "I also love being able to give back and use my skills, like art and music, to help others or make a difference in my community. And, I enjoy any opportunity I get to promote the sport, whether it be at school, or in general, to help let people know all the great things that can come from bowling."

Salinas has found continued success on the lanes, as well, collecting wins at a variety of local, regional and state events and finding the spotlight on the national stage with a Teen Masters victory in 2019 and a top-four finish in the U15 division at the Junior Gold Championships in 2018.

He has a high game of 300 and has multiple USBC-certified 800 series to his credit, but Salinas' impact in the bowling community also translates beyond the scoreboard. He also spends time coaching younger bowlers and serves as a league officer.

Whether it's on the lanes or off, Salinas loves supporting the sport and his fellow bowlers. That includes throwing strikes or setting up events, so others can have a memorable tournament experience.

"I've always loved the sport and all the things about it, even if I'm at an event, and I'm not the one bowling," Salinas said. "I just love being in the environment and being involved in every way possible."

Gagnon and Salinas will be recognized in April during the virtual 2021 USBC Convention.

Ed's Outlook

Shawn Maldonado Wins

First Career Tour Title

Shawn Maldonado won his first career Tour title in the PBA Chameleon Championship, rolling a 250 game to defeat seven-time PBA Tour winner Jakob Butturff in the title match. Maldonado started the game with the first six strikes and never trailed in the match.

“For whatever reason coming in, I just kept saying to myself I was going to win it,” said Maldonado.

Maldonado said he was entering the title match with a lot of confidence, but admitted later he started to get nervous during the commercial break. He struck on his first shot after the commercial, but then took the 6-9-10 off the rack for a three count in the seventh frame.

“It felt like a 30-minute commercial break,” said Maldonado. “I wanted to throw it slow but I didn't want to throw it too slow because I got lucky with one of the slow ones on the right lane. Then I went to the left lane and it just flew off my hand. I told myself to get it together, make some good shots, you've been doing it all day. That's what I did and I got the win.”

Maldonado spared in the seventh and stayed clean the rest of the way to win the title on a day in which he never lost. Maldonado went undefeated throughout nine total games, winning all six of his match play games and then posting the highest score in all three eliminator matches on FS1.

In Round 16 best-of-five match play, No. 10 seed Maldonado defeated Sean Lavery-Spahr, three games to none. In the Round of 8, Maldonado won all three games to sweep Marshall Kent. Maldonado used the same strategy that succeeded in match play on the televised finals.

“When I bowled Sean and Marshall, we threw urethane,” said Maldonado. “Once I felt like there was enough blend in the lane from the urethane transition, I knew I was able to miss a little bit left once I got into my reactive. As long as I carried, I was fine.”

Bowling a 224 game in the opening eliminator match, Maldonado led Butturff and Zach Weidman into the next match, knocking out Jason Sterner. In the second match, Maldonado and Butturff tied at 224, advancing to the title match and leaving Weidman in third.

“I was just super happy,” said Maldonado of his reaction to winning his first national title. “I was thinking about my family during the matches. I wake up every morning doing this for them. I just want to make them proud, to make Houston proud. I have a lot of people who support me and I don't want to let them down. I got it. I got the win.”

Bowling Tip

By Mike Luongo

In order for everyone to enjoy the bowling experience, it's common courtesy to follow a few simple guidelines. Here are some of the unwritten rules of bowling etiquette.

1. Always wear bowling shoes. Street shoes will ruin the approaches.

2. Keep nasty language and outbursts in your head. Nobody wants to hear it.

3. Keep any food or drinks away from the lanes. Spilling anything can damage the equipment and is dangerous for others.

4. Be ready to take your turn and don't make everyone wait.

5. Don't step over the foul line...it's against the rules and can result in you tracking oil all over the approach.

6. Don't use someone else's ball unless given permission.

7. Yield to the bowler to your right if you're both up at the same time.

8. Stand off the approach and out of the line of sight of the other bowler until that bowler finishes.

9. Do not intrude on the adjacent lanes in any way -- that includes throwing your ball onto the wrong lane, standing or playing on another lane's approach, or doing anything that infringes on the adjacent bowlers' lane.

Mike Luongo is a Certified IBPSIA Pro Shop Operator, Master Instructor, USBC Silver Level Coach and an Advisor-Speail Events Assistant with the Storm and Roto Grip Bowling Ball Company. Have a question, email him at mikel@stormbowling.com

700 Scoreboard

Kevin Stackhouse and Pedro Agapito III led the charge in lighting up the 700 scoreboard this past week. Kevin in the Kiamesha Lanes Monday Men's league scored a 729 off single games of 278, 247, 204, while Pedro in the same league smashed the maples for a 774 off single games of 290, 236, 248.

In the Friday Mixed league, Pedro scored a 756 off single games of 235, 231, 290 and Kevin clipped the maples for a 741 off single games of 258, 237, 246. In the Tuesday Mixed Firefighter league, James Schoenleb scored a 730 off single games of 225, 225, 280 and Shane Cunningham pounded out a 755 off single games of 252, 268, 235.

At the Hancock Fox Bowling Center in the Wednesday Independent league Jay Wormuth scored a 700 off single games of 258, 256, 186 and Nick Possemato in the Thursday Night 3 league recorded a 710 series off single games of 257, 235, 218.



Monday Men's

Rich Bradford 226, 184, 226, 636, Jason Jones Sr. 193, 238, 204, 635, Kyle Matthews 234, 608, Paul Minton 244, 237, 198, 679, Robert Feeney Jr. 216, 210, 610, Bob Feeney Sr. 232, 636, Bob Sze 215, 217, 625, William Schubert 211, 605, Bobby Patel 246, 620, Charllie Tuttel 236, 265, 688, Vinny Collura 223, 619, Allan Jones 244, 633, Dan VanAken 230, 236, 618, Tom Belgiovene 234, 644, Jonathan Wilhelm 267, 681, Jaryl Scott 224, 655, Jason Jones Jr. 223, 616.

Tuesday Mixed Firefighter

Steve Belgiovene 232, 619, Jonathan Wilhelm 246, 237, 688, Charlie Tuttle 236, 232, 662, Bobby Patel 257, 613, Jaclyn Kimmes 174, Carena Collura 183, Jack Rustic 236, 651, William VanAken 236, 642, David Graham 204, 607, Kevin Stackhouse 227, 633, Keith Smith 223, 646.

Friday Mixed

Shane Cunningham 247, 642, David Graham 243, 647, Greg Kuchar 223, 616, Charlie Meier 274, 663, Philip Norris 235, Jason Rogers 269, 234, 696, Dennis Rundle 215, 619, Bill Schubert 214, 602, Keith Smith 241, 655, Bob Sze 244, Esther Barber 170, Lisa Cartwright 201, 176, 512, Valerie Mott 170, Wendy Swan 183.


Wed. Independent

Andrew Bullis 221, 630, Brian Drumm 210, 601, Scott Ellis 289, 662, Pete Green 226, 639, Rob Johnson 224, 605, Wayne McClenon 232, 622, Mitch Persbacker 240, 685, Aaron Phillips 225, 631, Tim Smith 215, 626, Roger Widmann 232, 610, Zuke Wormuth 214, 637, Scott Wormuth 213, 605.

Thurs. Night 3

Dale Conklin 241, 670, Scott Ellis 220, 604, Rick Mills 246, 651, Neil Mosher 213, 607, Dick Price 246, 630, Dan Wormuth 247, 691.

Friday Couples

Jalene Allien 189, Andy Bullis 215, 602, Samantha Card 181, 190, Dale Conklin 245, 613, Mike Dufton 225, 638, Janet Ellis 192, 180, 189, 561, Scott Ellis 215, 601, Linda Ferris 181, Dennis Leonard 220, 640, Mindy McElroy 190, 501, Brianna Meres 219, 215, 595, Rick Mills 223, 618, Kathy Smith 205, 533, Brian Tiffany 227. 637, Dan Wormuth 237, 647, Jay Wormuth 214, 626,

Sat. Youth Mixed

Landon Fuller 142, 116, 113, Olivia Johnston 125, 90, 99, Landyn Robinson 115, 135, 117, Carter Wormuth 147, 156, 124, 427, Cooper Wormuth 142, 130, 151, 423.

Sunday Mixed Fun

Landon Fuller (youth) 120, 114, 124, Anthony Gately 233, Donnie Marino 245, 631, Garry Mills 209, 608.


Thursday Women's

Carmela Monterperto 181, 184, 147, 512, Rachel Rivera 175, 177, 148, 500, Celeste Fitzpatrick 162, 162, 159, 483, Sherri Laird 157, 170, 155, 482, Kim DeGarmo 149, 173, 156, 478, Kristin Banse 188, Jeanne Steuhl 179.

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 to bght75@gmail.com or fax to 845-205-4474. View this column and Ed's Photos at http://bght.blogspot.com We are also on Facebook and Twitter.


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