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Regina bowling super league a training ground for 5-pin competitors

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Regina bowling super league a training ground for 5-pin competitors
Regina bowling super league a training ground for 5-pin competitors – Feb 20, 2020

There’s a lot on the line at Golden Mile Bowling Lanes.

During the lanes’ Monday night super league, five-pin bowlers from in and around Regina get together for two hours of competitive play.

“It’s the elite bowlers of the city and it’s a cash league – we don’t play for trophies,” said Kevin Clark, who has bowled competitively for 29 years.

Clark operates the Golden Mile lanes and said the super league is essentially a training ground for bowlers taking part in the tournament season, which typically runs January through March.

“We go through our mental preparation, our physical preparation, for strikes and spares as well to try and beat the other opponents we’re playing against,” he said, adding the elite bowlers average at least 270 a game.

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Right now, their focus is on the upcoming Regina Classic Feb. 20-23.

Golden Mile lanes host the annual five-pin tournament, which is part of the Western Canadian Bowling Tour that has gone through Calgary and Edmonton and will finish in Red Deer, Alta.

This year, more than 160 individual bowlers, making up 260 entries, will vie for a shot at over $70,000.

Josie Brooks, 20, prepares to bowl during the Monday night super league at Regina’s Golden Mile Bowling Lanes on Feb. 10, 2020. Daniella Ponticelli / Global News

“This kind of league you’re still bowling to have fun, but it’s a totally different mindset – you’re more focused on the tournament,” Regina bowler Josie Brooks said.

Brooks, 20, has competed for the last decade, taking part in six youth nationals and two adult tournaments.

She said the Regina Classic showcases the best in Canadian bowling talent and camaraderie.

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“I know a lot of people say, ‘oh my soccer family or my ball family,’ but the bowling community we’re all family no matter what,” she said.

The Regina Classic five-pin bowling tournament will be held at Golden Mile Bowling Lanes on Feb. 20-23. Daniella Ponticelli / Global News

For Clark, it truly is family – not only did he meet his wife through the sport, but their children have also taken to bowling.

“It’s in our blood. I mean, we practice twice a week, we have leagues twice a week, the kids practice twice a week. It’s just a great thing to do,” he said.

Clark’s 13-year-old son, Liam, attends the super league night to practice his throws.

“I will definitely continue throughout my whole life and try to get better every day,” Liam said, adding he’s already working on the challenging mental aspect of the game.

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“You don’t want to get down on yourself because then you’re not thinking straight and you could throw the wrong ball.”

Spectators are welcome to attend the Regina Classic tournament. Bleachers will be set up at the venue or follow from home through a livestream on the Golden Mile Bowling Lanes website.

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