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Thread: League coming to a close, nervous about whether we can hold on to lead

  1. #1
    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    Unhappy League coming to a close, nervous about whether we can hold on to lead

    Now, I should start by saying...I've only finished 1st place in a bowling league before...ONCE. And that was a 5-team scratch league where there really were only two teams that had a chance at finishing 1st. Never have I really came close in a large, handicap league. I think I was on a couple teams that hung around in the top 7 of larger (25+ team) leagues...but never first.

    Well, this year...starting about Week 4...our team took the top spot and just never let go. I can't explain it. We just tended to bowl better than the other team each night. We'd have better "bad nights" than the other team....or better "good nights" than the other team. We didn't set any records or dominate the stats. We just managed to take all 4 points every week.

    In the process...we separated ourselves from the rest of the league. Most of the league, for the entire season, was about 4 points difference from 2nd best to 2nd worst. It was just a huge log-jam of teams...except for us. We were double-digit points ahead of everyone else.

    All that started to change after the 2nd Covid-19 shutdown. We cam back...and teams started to nibble away at our lead. At first, we just brushed it off as no bigee. But, as the weeks went on...it got bad and frustrations became more visible. Our anchor and two bowlers capable of consistently getting in the 200s...they are bowling in the 190s. Our 170s average bowlers that was getting occasional 180, 190, and 200+ games...he's now bowling an occasional 190s game and a couple games in the 140s. The mood is NOT jovial.

    And to add to the pressure...teams will routinely send their "scouts" to wander down to our lane to check the scores...it seems like the entire league has been anxiously awaiting our demise...and now they finally are seeing the end of the evil empire.

    To make matters worse, we have two big games coming up. We face the 3rd place team this week and 4th place team the following week. Current Standings are as follows:

    Our Team: 68-32, 82433 pins

    Team 2: 64-36, 81979 pins, -117

    Team 3: 58-42, 81860 pins, +19

    Team 4: 58-42, 81572 pins, +4
    Team 5: 57.5-42.5, 82606 pins, +9
    Team 6: 56-44, 81941 pins, +113
    Etc...

    Now, team #2 is the only team we have to "give" pins to...because they are epic sandbaggers. We get a small amount of pins from the other teams. Team 6 is an exception...they give up a LOT of pins to every team...because they are essentially a professional team that joined the league with a negative handicap.

    But, back to the point of the thread, I'm nervous. I don't usually get nervous when I bowl. Bowling is just "fun". Even when I bowl for money...I don't usually get nervous. But, I'm getting nervous. To hold onto first place...for nearly 25 weeks...not counting the Covid shutdown weeks...only to fall out of first place in the final month!? Ughhh!!
    In Bag: (: .) Storm Optimus Solid; (: .) Lane Masters Yeah Baby Sinful; (: .) 900 Global Special Ops; (: .) Pyramid Force Pearl; (: .) Ebonite Maxim
    USBC#: 8259-59071; USBC Sanctioned Average = 187; Lifetime Average = 170;
    Ball Speed: 15.54mph; Rev. Rate: 240rpm || High Game (sanc.) = 300 (268); High Series (sanc.) = 725 (689); Clean Games: 157

    Smokey this is not 'Nam', this is bowling. There are rules. Proud two-time winner of a bowlingboards.com weekly ball give-away!

  2. #2
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    In a handicap league winning seems most often to be a matter of bowling the right team on the right night. We all go through stretches where our opponents carry every weird hit and couldnít miss the ten pin if they tried on the few non strikes. Than there are the streaks when your team canít miss and the other teams canít buy a strike. It sounds as if your teammates are starting to think about winning the whole enchilada, and are putting more pressure on themselves than normal. The fact that they are pressing, and that this is hurting their performance is whatís causing you to worry. 25 weeks is a long hot streak. I would be thinking that itís gotta end myself.
    John

  3. #3
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    Every team has their moments. My team got on a streak in the second quarter of this season and won the quarter by a very large margin, securing our spot in the championship at the end of the season. Third quarter we struggled and finished mid-pack. Now, 2 weeks in to the fourth quarter we are struggling again. Yes, we have a spot secured but at this point we are trying to add to our point money total for the end of season payout. There are still 6 weeks left in the regular season so there is time to recover and add to the point money. Then we have championship night to contend with, and other people on the team are already running what-if scenarios each week on how the championship will play out depending on who the final team is that earns a spot. Sometimes I think that puts undo pressure on the team that just isn't needed at this point in the season.

  4. #4
    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    Well, just as an update, things went well.

    It helped that the team, as a whole, seemed calm and un-rattled. The #2 bowler had recovered from his temper tantrum last week. The lead bowler and anchor were both steady. Things just kinda fell in line. Our #3 bowler had an off night. Our #2 bowler struggled a little, but he managed to bowl in the 182-202 range...which is over his 177 average...and had at least one clean game...so he was fine with that.

    Our lead and anchor both were above 200s for all 3 games...so they did well.

    I lost my line late in the first and didn't have the greatest spare shooting game for a 202 in Game 1. Started Game 2 with the front 6, but my speed dropped too low in the 7th and that broke up my perfect game bid. That...plus a terrible shot in the 9th and 10th. Finished Game 2 with a 222. Battled transition in Game 3 and could only salvage a 191.

    Our 3rd bowler had a terrible night. He's a 200+ average bowler and he shot something like a 513-563 series.

    But, fortunately for us, our opponents just didn't bring their best stuff. They struggled all night. Each game, maybe 1-2 of them would have big games while 2-3 would bowl well below their averages. Not to mention, they gave up about 30 pins of handicap by bringing in a higher average kid and the kid didn't have a good night.

    So, we took all 4. The 2nd place team split...meaning we're now 6 points ahead of them going into next week. And, the #4 team was on the lane next to us and they only managed 1 point. We're playing them next week.

    So, crisis averted! For now.
    In Bag: (: .) Storm Optimus Solid; (: .) Lane Masters Yeah Baby Sinful; (: .) 900 Global Special Ops; (: .) Pyramid Force Pearl; (: .) Ebonite Maxim
    USBC#: 8259-59071; USBC Sanctioned Average = 187; Lifetime Average = 170;
    Ball Speed: 15.54mph; Rev. Rate: 240rpm || High Game (sanc.) = 300 (268); High Series (sanc.) = 725 (689); Clean Games: 157

    Smokey this is not 'Nam', this is bowling. There are rules. Proud two-time winner of a bowlingboards.com weekly ball give-away!

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