|SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador - Josie Earnest of Vandalia, Ill., and Geoffrey Young of Denton, Texas, won gold medals in singles Monday at the 2008 Pan American Bowling Confederation Youth Championships.|
In the opening event of the PABCON Youth Championships, Young averaged 248 over six games, totaling 1,488 to win the boys title. Earnest overcame a slow start to win the girls title with 1,263, an average of 210.5.
"It really feels great because I threw the ball well all day," said Young, the reigning U.S. Junior Amateur champion. "Not only did I get to bowl for the United States, I was able to bring home a gold medal. This means the world to me and it proves that all the work I've done leading up to this tournament has paid off."
Competing on the first of two boys squads, Young set the score to beat with games of 247, 226, 244, 278, 248 and 245. He finished the final game with seven consecutive strikes, breaking up splits for strikes on his first two shots in the 10th frame.
"I really got lucky on those shots to strike," Young said. "I just wanted to throw the best shots I could so I would have a chance to strike. When I let the first one go, I said 'Oh boy, here we go.' I really didn't think I blew it, though. I was just hoping to leave something I could make for a spare."
Young beat out Michael Piccari of Venezuela, who took the silver with 1,430, and Daniel Enrique Melo of Colombia, who had 1,364 to win bronze.
Junior Team USA's Daniel Spink of Florissant, Mo., just missed earning a medal, finishing in fourth place with 1,338. John Szczerbinski of North Tonawanda, N.Y., shot 1,232 and finished in 18th place, while Brent Bowers of Mulvane, Kan., took 21st place with 1,214.
Earnest, meanwhile, started singles with a 155 game before rebounding with 225, 214, 212, 268 and 189 and edged fellow teammate Christine Bator of Warren, Mich., who took silver with 1,226. Anggie Ramirez of Colombia earned bronze with 1,212.
"I always tend to bowl better when my back is against the wall," said Earnest, who competes collegiately at Vanderbilt. "I think it was more of a motivational factor for me rather than dwelling on what happened the first game. You just have to learn from it and move on."
Jenny Brown of DeLand, Fla., finished in fifth place for the girls with 1,175, while Kristie Petravich of West Palm Beach, Fla., finished 11th with 1,119.
Action next shifts to doubles with Young pairing up with Spink, Szczerbinski teaming with Bowers, Petravich pairing up with Brown and Earnest together with Bator.
For more information on the PABCON Youth Championships, including stories, photos and results, visit bowl.com.
2008 PABCON YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIPS
At Galaxy Bowling Center (San Salvador, El Salvador)
1, Geoffrey Young, United States, 1,488. 2, Michael Piccari, Venezuela, 1,430. 3, Daniel Enrique Melo, Colombia, 1,364. 4, Daniel Spink, United States, 1,338. 5, Oscar Javier Rodriquez, Colombia, 1,328. 6, Samuel Montalvo, Puerto Rico, 1,317. 7, Kevin Belandria, Venezuela, 1,311. 8, William Navas, Puerto Rico, 1,304. 9 (tie), Alberto Lizano, Costa Rica and Jorge Luis Ramos, Mexico, 1,296.
1, Josie Earnest, United States, 1,263. 2, Christine Bator, United States, 1,226. 3, Anggie Ramirez, Colombia, 1,212. 4, Patricia de Faria, Venezulea, 1,190. 5, Jenny Brown, United States, 1,175. 6, Pamela Beaudin, Canada, 1,161. 7, Natalia Rico, Colombia, 1,147. 8, Valerie Ruiz, Puerto Rico, 1,146. 9, Lilia Robles, Mexico, 1,137. 10, Maria Jose Rodriguez, Colombia, 1,122.
U.S. Bowling Congress