Robert Talavera pulled off another close win in Saipan Bowling Association’s Budweiser King of the Lanes Tournament held over the weekend Saipan Bowling Center, prevailing by only two pinfalls against Raymond Angeles, 826-824. The veteran bowler also had a two-pinfall victory over Raymond Zapanta in the January roll-offs.
After a dismal 169-pinfall performance in this month’s tournament, Talavera knocked down 200-plus pins in the last three games (203, 208, and 246) to average 206.50 in the final day of the weekend competition. He also joined Day 1 of the roll-offs, but his 751 pinfalls (188, 211, 203, and 149) was only good four fourth place at the end of the opening day. Bowlers are allowed to compete in both days of the monthly roll-offs, but only the higher score is counted.
Last month’s runner-up Raymond Zapanta topped Day 1 with his 812 pinfalls (226, 164, 223, and 199), but slid to third after Angeles showed up in the second day of the tournament and beat the former by 12 pinfalls. Angeles had a promising start with his 195 pinfalls and boosted his chances to take the February plum when he tallied 234 and a field-best 260 in the next two games. However, the eventual runner-up collapsed in Game 4, recording only 135 pinfalls for a 206 average.
Twenty other bowlers joined the February King of the Lanes tournament. The list includes Simon Manacop (805), Lee Yong Woon (783), Paul Pangelinan (779), Ruselle Zapanta (751), Bernard Paraiso (748), Raul Dumapit (735), Lito Teodoro (732), Percy Omechelang (724), Ramir De Leon (695), M.J. Aldan (694), Ronald Batac (692), Ariel Dumapit (691), Ador Dimaano (681), John Jimeno (681), Edward Baluyan (657), Kim Jae Yong (646), Raphael Zapanta (618), Randy Abreu (579), Ben Aizon (532), and Roger Vales (363).
Meanwhile, Kathy Mersai duplicated Talavera’s back-to-back wins this season.
After sharing the January honors with Diana Camacho, Mersai was alone at the top spot with her four-game total of 733 pinfalls. She was one of the only two female bowlers to nail at least 700 pinfalls in last weekend’s competition.
Mersai posted 186 pinfalls in Game 1, slowed down a bit in Game 2 (167), but closed out strong with 184 and 196 for an average of 183.25 and 19-pinfall victory over Gina Sablan. Sablan was consistent with her game, registering 179, 174, 182, and 180 for an average of 168.50. Joining Sablan and Mersai in the Top 3 was reigning Queen of the Lanes Yho Villavicencio, who gathered 648 pinfalls (148, 163, 153, and 184) and averaged 162.
Other participants in the February Queen of the Lanes were Elena Soll (645), Gloria Omechelang (642), Tess Fabie (600), Carrie Camacho (595), Ron Cal (588), Diana Camacho (584), Gigi Zapanta (583), Lala Taitano (577), Diane Chong (573), and Myrna Santos (537).