BOWLING NOTES: Former PBA member aims at another BowlerMaxx York County Match Play title

BARRY SPARKS
717-505-5403/@ydsports
Ritchie Wolfe
  • The BowlerMaxx York County Match Play Championship starts this coming weekend.
  • Former Professional Bowlers Association Tour member Ritchie Wolfe is the defending champion.
  • Wolfe is one of nine former champs in this year's field.

Ritchie Wolfe had only lived in York for two months when he won the 2019 BowlerMaxx York County Match Play Championship.

"I didn't realize at the time how big of a deal this tournament is," said Wolfe, who competed on the Professional Bowlers Association Tour from 1986 through 2010. "But, I do now."

Wolfe, 54, knows the tournament has a rich 25-year history. 

"It's prestigious and extremely competitive," he said. "The list of past winners is impressive."

Wolfe, a southpaw, is aware that Adam Baer is the only bowler to win back-to-back Match Play trophies (2010 and 2011). 

"That's a good indication of how difficult it is to win the Match Play title," he said.

The defending champ admits he would like to become the second bowler to earn back-to-back titles. The 2020 event was not held because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"It's a matter of pride," he said. "There's a lot of talent in the field and I just want to give myself an opportunity to win."

Although Wolfe would like to bowl well and get off to a good start, he said patience is the key. 

"No matter how well you bowl, your patience will be tested," he said. "You can't get down on yourself or panic."

In 2019, Wolfe rallied from 152 pins down the final day of the 2019 tournament to defeat Justin Mong by 56 pins. He averaged 262 for six games at Laser Alleys to ignite the comeback.

Wolfe is one of nine former champs in this year's field. The others are: Dave Zelger (1996, 2000), Billy Heltzel Jr. (1997), Chris Lakatosh (2004), Adam Baer (2008, 2010, 2011, 2014, 2017), Greg Bruff (2012, 2015), Jerred Poff (2013), Mike Spangler (2016) and Eric Smith (2018).

The schedule: The highly competitive tournament opens this coming weekend with six games of qualifying at Hanover Bowling Centre at 1 p.m. Saturday, and six games of qualifying at Laser Alleys at 10 a.m. Sunday.

The top 12 bowlers advance to match play. South Hanover will play host to six games of match play at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 24. The tournament concludes with six games of match play at Lion Bowl at 10 a.m. Sunday, April 25.

Jordyn Myers accepts the Michael K. Hershey Scholarship from Joanne Nosoff, left, and Paula Wolfe, right, of Suburban Bowlermama.

Myers wins Hershey scholarship: Jordyn Myers, a junior at York Suburban, recently won the $1,000 Michael K. Hershey Scholarship.

Suburban Bowlermama presents the scholarship to a junior bowler who exemplifies sportsmanship, dependability, character and academics.

Reach Barry Sparks at sports@yorkdispatch.com.