Don Herrington couldn’t stop smiling Sunday at Towne Bowling Academy, and it wasn’t because he was the top Capital Region finisher in the inaugural PBA50 Towne Bowling Academy Open.
Herrington, who finished 13th and earned $565, was ecstatic because the tournament he helped get off the ground was a huge success on many fronts. With little preparation time and virtually no sponsorship help, Herrington urged many of his friends on the senior pro bowling tour to give this new regional a try.
Although he didn’t want to make a big deal out of it, Herrington came up with much of the sponsorship money himself. Towne BA proprietor Marty Capullo Jr. kicked in the rest and made all the pros feel right at home.
“Everything turned out great,” Herrington said. “All I did was ask a lot of the guys if they would come to the tournament, and a lot of them did. I’m so glad it worked out. It was very exciting.”
Sixty bowlers competed. I was impressed by the local turnout, which included standouts like Brian LeClair, the PBA50 Player of the Year who runs a pro shop at both Del Lanes and Boulevard Bowl; Tom Yadanza of Saratoga Springs, Ron Gardner of Troy, Craig Schoonmaker of Glenville, Dave Henderson of Schenectady, Bill Neumann of Rensselaer, Chris Fedden of Albany, Paul Dumas of Rensselaer, Andrew Smith of Colonie, Mark James of Troy, Gene Speenburgh of Catskill and Rich Strath of Altamont, among others. About a fourth of the field had local roots.
But just as important were the big-name touring pros who gave the event a stamp of approval. Harry Sullins, nicknamed “The Legend,” drove in from…
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