Nick Catroppo, 18, gave up his youth bowler status two seasons ago to focus on competing in the adult leagues at Spring Hill Lanes. He definitely is not regretting that decision.
Last Wednesday night in the Kevin's Pro Shop League, Catroppo tossed bookend scores of 279 and 278. Though his middle game was only a 182, the 739 series was good for second in the county for the week.
Catroppo has committed to making his first trip to the U.S. Bowling Congress National Tournament in Reno, Nev., this spring, and with scores like that, he is making a steady rise to be among some of the top competitors in the area.
Both of his career perfect games have come this year. He also added a 299 and 290 to go with those other USBC achievement scores.
It seems only a matter of time before Catroppo makes the jump for his first 800 series.
While a regular in the Kevin's Pro Shop and Gator High Rollers, Catroppo averaged a 209 in 2005-06. He also competed semi-frequently in the Hammer Classic League at Hudson Bowl in Pasco County, where he averaged a 223.
HEARL LEADS LADIES: Anita Hearl is one of many who competes in leagues at both Mariner Lanes and Spring Hill. This past week, she shined at both locales on her way to leading the county ladies in both series and game scores.
In the Friday Early Mariners League at Mariner, Hearl tossed a 630 series to lead the county on the strength of the fourth-best scratch game (232). The second-best series also belonged to Hearl. Competing in the Gator High Rollers League on Monday night at Spring Hill, she pitched a 608 series.
Last season, bowling exclusively at Spring Hill, she averaged a 195 between the Gator High Rollers and Friday Primetimers leagues.
Hearl has been one of the county's best female bowlers for years, and her son, Jimmy, also is among the county's elite on the lanes.
RISOLA AND KASTNER'S STREAK: Dom Risola was on quite a run last week at Spring Hill while Rich Kastner Jr. also came up with a big series.
Between his efforts in the Gator High Rollers League on Monday night and Kevin's Pro Shop League on Wednesday night, he amassed some of the best scores in the county. To start the week, Risola tossed a 279 game Monday. He added a 299 game and 723 series Wednesday.
Kastner tossed dual 267s and a 222 for a 756 series in the Monday Night Men's League at Spring Hill. The 756 led the county last week.
He averaged a 216 last season while competing in the same three leagues, the Gator High Rollers, Kevin's Pro Shop and Monday Night Men's.