Coronavirus prevents Jen Sparks from making run at York County women's bowling record
- Jen Sparks led all York County female bowlers in average in 2019-2020 at 235.
- The Yorker established that mark over 104 games at Colony Park Lanes.
- The average was a personal high for Sparks. It came in the Wednesday Scratch Doubles League.
- Sparks has led all York County women in average for five of the last six seasons.
Jen Sparks owns a T-shirt that says: "The Coronavirus ruined my bowling season."
After finding out that the 32-year-old right-hander averaged 235 during the 2019-2020 season and led York County women in average, you may ask how could her season have been ruined?
Well, maybe not completely ruined, but certainly slightly marred.
The coronavirus pandemic caused the Wednesday Scratch Doubles League at Colony Park Lanes to abruptly cut its season seven weeks short. At the time, Sparks was averaging 235 for 104 games, her personal high.
She was, however, within striking distance of Lindy Decker's all-time county-high average for women of 236, set during the 2008-09 season.
"I believe I was one week away from tying Lindy's mark," Sparks said. "And, I think I could have passed it in the final six weeks of the season. I had been bowling well all season."
Sparks, who rolls four games a week in the doubles league, had been averaging more than 237 during the final weeks of the season.
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"It was very disappointing," said Sparks, who has led county women in average five of the past six seasons. "Beating Lindy's average has been my goal for a while. It's extremely difficult to average 236, and I had an excellent shot at it."
Expecting twins: Determined, Sparks still has her sights set on breaking Decker's record. This season, however, the Yorker will be able to compete in only the first half of the season. She is pregnant and expecting twins, with a due date of April 6. It will be the first children for she and her husband, Travis.
"I am hoping to bowl every week in the first half," said Sparks, who was elated to find out she was pregnant. She figures she can roll at least 66 games, which is the minimum required to qualify for the top average.
She doesn't expect to lose her competitive spirit, motivation or goals when she becomes a new mom. Although she plans to return to the lanes after the birth of the twins, she doesn't know when.
"I'm very excited about the future," she said. "Things certainly will be different, but Travis and I can't wait. "
Reach Barry Sparks at email@example.com.
YORK COUNTY WOMEN
Top averages for 2019-20
(Minimum of 60 games)
Bowler Avg. Games Center
Jennifer Sparks 235 104 Colony Park North
Stephanie Whipple-Miller 229 60 Suburban Bowlerama
Kerry Smith 226 90 Laser Alleys
Julie Carson 221 92 Colony Park North
Jen Schaffer 220 84 Suburban Bowlerama
Chelsea Poff 220 63 Colony Park North
Tracy Hedrick 214 72 Suburban Bowlerama
Morgan Daub 213 84 Suburban Bowlerama
Stephanie Schultz 213 81 Suburban Bowlerama
Brenda Danfelt 212 88 Colony Park North
Brandy Waltersdorff 209 71 Suburban Bowlerama
Deb Beachtel 208 63 Hanover Bowling Centre
Samantha Schnur 208 63 East Lincoln
Melissa Pickett 205 81 Hanover Bowling Centre
Amy Hoff 205 81 Suburban Bowlerama
Kristen Gessner 204 63 Hanover Bowling Centre
Brittany Poff 204 69 Laser Alleys
Delicia Brown 203 81 Suburban Bowlerama
Lisa Benedict 202 78 Suburban Bowlerama
Jill Moore 200 75 East Lincoln
Kimberly Beckman 199 90 Colony Park North
Brooke Bowers 199 81 Suburban Bowlerama
Kristin Wernig 198 63 Suburban Bowlerama
Cheyenne Shoemaker 198 87 Surburban Bowlerama
Rebecca Heltzel 197 75 Suburban Bowlerama