Perfect gamer Alex Castro broke his nine-month silence after ruling the October Saipan Bowling Association/Budweiser King of the Lanes Tournament.
Castro, who joined CNMI’s “300 Club” on Jan. 15, 2011, had a rough 2013 season, missing top honors in the first nine months of the competition before winning the October roll-offs last Sunday at the Saipan Bowling Center. He recorded 200-plus pinfalls in the first three games (221, 201, and 204) and closed out with a 188 in Game 4 to collect 814 pinfalls, 13 more than Day 1 leader and three-time winner Robert Talavera.
Talavera slid to second with his 801 pinfalls, as he only knocked down more than 200 pins in two games (203 in Game 2 and 244 in Game 3). The March, April, and July King of the Lanes started the two-day roll-off last Saturday with a 177 in Game 1 and then finished Day 1 with 183 pinfalls in Game 4 to average 200.25. Talavera came back to SBC for the second day of the event, but his 766 (201, 235, 172, and 158) was only good for fourth place. Bowlers can join both days of the tournament, but only the higher score is counted.
Joining Castro and Talavera in the Top 3 was youth bowler Raphael Zapanta, who earned 799 pinfalls. Zapanta logged 200-plus pinfalls on three occasions (221, 202, 220), but his 156 in Game 2 cost him the October plum. Only Talavera and Castro averaged at least 200 pinfalls in the October tournament, as the eventual winner posted 203.50, while Zapanta registered 199.75.
With the victory, Castro now qualifies for the SBA/Budweiser King of the Lanes Tournament, which he has never won. The season-ending competition gathers all 12 monthly winners and other qualifiers and will be held in January next year. Other early qualifiers were Raymond Zapanta, Simon Manacop, Paul Pangelinan, and Percy Omechelang.
Meanwhile, 25 other bowlers joined the October roll-offs with Omechelang placing fourth with his 762 pinfalls. Omechelang nailed 194, 175, and 193 in the first three games and saved his best for last, notching 200 in Game 4. Ronald Batac rounded out the Top 5 after collecting 754 pinfalls. He started strong with 222 pinfalls and was still on a rhythm in Game 2 (199) before struggling in the last two games with 166 and 171 pinfalls.
Completing the Top 10 were Yong Woon Lee (745), Ramir De Leon (742), Raymond Zapanta (741), Ariel Dumapit (740), and Manacop (737).