New Mexico team coasts to Diamond lead at WC

SomeStrikeItHotLRENO, Nev. - Shauna Shannon of Albuquerque, N.M., rolled the second-highest individual series in the team event at the 2012 United States Bowling Congress Women's Championships and helped Some Strike It Hot into the top spot in Diamond Team on Monday.

The group rolled games of 1,065, 961 and 1,112 to finish with a 3,138 scratch total, which was enough to move into second in Scratch Team as well. They received an additional 108 pins of handicap per game for a 3,462 handicap total, the highest score in the three-year history of the Diamond Division. Time of Our Life II of Saddle Brook, N.J., previously held the lead with 3,372, and still holds the top spot in Scratch Team with 3,282.

Shannon rolled games of 278, 225 and 244 for a 747 series and was joined at the National Bowling Stadium by first-time participant Wendy Shelton (693), Marsha Kuhnley (582), Brandy Silva (578) and Tina Ingram (538).

At the 2011 USBC Women's Championships in Syracuse, N.Y., Shannon and Silva teamed up to help Team 23321 of Grand Prairie, Texas, into the lead with a 3,225 total, and even though that score didn't hold for very long, they are thrilled to return to the top of the standings. Eagles Edge Pro Shop of Des Plaines, Ill., claimed the title in 2011 with 3,416, while Team 23321 finished 15th.

"We were super excited about it," said Shannon, who made her fourth Women's Championships appearance. "I was watching the scores while we were bowling just to see if we were making our average or a little bit more. We took the lead last year and had it for about 12 hours, so we're hoping we can best that this time and hang on a little bit longer."

Some Strike It Hot came in with a game plan after visiting with USBC Silver coach Mike Jasnau at Lane 81 in the Stadium's pro shop. They were able to communicate what they saw as the lanes transitioned and stay ahead of the pace.

"Marsha and I saw Mike Jasnau today and took a lesson with him," Shannon said. "He was able to give us some tips, and we also practiced on the shot. We knew we needed to stay aggressive, make good shots and stay ahead of the shot rather than chase it."

With the 2012 Bowling's U.S. Women's Open just days away, Some Strike It Hot knows many teams will be eyeing the new top score. The group is confident in their score and hopes to add their name to the tournament record books.

"Who doesn't want to add a title to their resume?" Shannon said. "Especially this tournament. The Women's Championships is a prestigious tournament and has been around for a long time. It would be an honor to get a title. There are some big guns coming in, but I think we all held our own and made the best shots we could. We'll just wait and see and hopefully the best will turn out for us."

Bowlers Choice Pro Shop of Tonawanda, N.Y., set the initial bar for Diamond Team with a 3,436 handicap total at the 2010 Women's Championships in El Paso, Texas. That year marked the event's transition to a three-division handicap format.

Diamond Team is made up of bowlers with combined averages of 900 and higher, with handicap based on 1,100.

Presenting sponsors for the 2012 USBC Women's Championships are Circus Circus, Eldorado Hotel Casino and Silver Legacy Resort Casino in Reno, Nev. Other sponsors include Harrah's Reno Casino, official brackets sponsor, Kegel, official lane maintenance provider, Humana, official registration sponsor, Steltronic, official scoring system, and supporting sponsors Storm Bowling Products, Nationwide Insurance, Sands Regency Casino Hotel and Atlantis Casino Resort and Spa and