Striking Against Breast Cancer Tournament

Striking Against Breast Cancer 2017

The PBA-PWBA Xtra Frame Luci Bonneau Memorial Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles Tournament, sponsored by Storm kicks off this weekend. In its 18th year the tournament will host the largest field in its history. More than 320 bowlers will be competing in the event.

The story of the tournament travels back several years. Donna Conners and Luci Bonneau met bowling together in Houston and became travel partners on the LPBT. In 1999,  Bonneau was battling breast cancer and Conners stayed by her side. They discussed creating a bowling tournament to raise money for breast cancer research when her treatment was complete. Bonneau passed away later that year and Conners knew she had to create the event.

“This event has been around for 18 years and it is still growing,” Conners said. "It’s about people coming together for a dreadful disease. When you think about it, breast cancer doesn’t ask any questions. It doesn’t care if you a mother, if you a father, or who you are. Breast cancer hits everybody.”

Conners starts preparing for the next event the day after the current year wraps up. The tournament fills up quickly. Entry blanks are posted live on the website on January 1 and she starts receiving entries on January 3. In 2016, the event raised $84,000 to help fund breast cancer research and Conners is excited to expand the field and continue growing the event this year. Although the players are competing for a title and a $16,000 top prize they all know that this event means more than just that.

“There’s nobody in that building that hasn’t come in contact with somebody that has cancer.” Conners said. “I am very grateful that the PBA & PWBA have come together and given me a title for the players because they deserve it. The players would come here anyway and I know that, but I needed that title to help these players and their careers. I’m very grateful to Tom Clark and Chad Murphy and all the people involved for allowing me to award a title. I’m also grateful that people can watch the players compete live on Xtra Frame.”

Players travel from across the nation and around the world to compete in the event. Conners has a team of volunteers that give their time and help the event run smoothly. She says each year the volunteers keep growing.

This year the team has put together, Pennies for Pins, a new initiative to get fans at home more involved at the event. Fans can choose their favorite bowler and either pledge a flat donation or a “Penny-A-Pin” based on how many pins the bowlers knock down. Individuals can go to this website to pledge a donation: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSctRolxMIKSDTbtgZU24ARCiSu_5OvF3I_AxE_JTHWohVhHdA/viewform?c=0&w=1

“I am very blessed.” Conners said. “I don’t even know how to put into words how much I appreciate everyone that has been such a part of it. They say it takes a village to raise a child. Well, I am the child and I have an entire village helping me pull this off.”

Storm Bowling has sponsored the event since 2002 and each year the whole company tries to participate in the event in every way.

“Storm has been a proud supporter of the Luci for 18 years,” Leanne Hulsenberg, Marketing Coordinator at Storm Products said. “Not only do we sponsor the event, all of our pro staff and Storm employees participate in the tournament. Donna Conners and her staff of volunteers do an incredible job all year to prepare for this weekend and we appreciate all of their efforts to make this special tournament happen each year.”

Knowing that Storm Bowling is 1000% behind her event means a lot to Conners.

“Having Storm Bowling Products behind me is like having wings that just lift me up and help me fly.” Conners said. “I feel safe. I know that they’ve got my back and they’re always there to help me. Without these sponsors that like Storm Bowling Products, High 5 Gear, and all the many, many sponsors who donate time and money to come bowl the pro-am, this event would not be possible.”

Conners and all of her volunteers try to make sure that the players who participate in the event know how grateful she is for their presence and support. They have stayed with her and helped the event grow year after year.

“I do everything that I possibly can to make the players feel like they are rock stars.” Conners said. “They are rock stars. They deserve everything I can possibly give them. If I can find a way to give them more then I’m going to find a way. I want them to remember that when they leave here that they are worth everything that I can possible give them. They deserve to be recognized as the greatest players in the world.”

The Luci hosts a pro-am where amateur bowlers bowl with PBA and PWBA stars and help raise money for the cause throughout the event. They host a silent auction as well as several raffles and giveaways for all of the participants. This year, Conners has added a giant Plinko board that participants will be able to use to win prizes. It’s an important piece of the weekend. Conners does everything in her power to make sure that there is “positive karma” throughout the entire event and good thoughts for all the spectators and participants.

She also tries to make the tournament environment as fair as possible right down to the lane condition. Kegel comes in to provide the tournament with a fair but challenging lane condition. Every once in a while a player will get caught up in the frustration of the tournament. It doesn’t take long for them to regain perspective.

“I had one player tell me one time that this (lane) condition is awful,” Conners said. “I said, you’re right now turn around. Do you see this lady standing behind you? She has breast cancer right now. When you are on these lanes you are fighting to win. That’s what she’s doing too. She is fighting for her life.”

To follow the tournament on Xtra Frame, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link. For those who would like to support the event but can’t attend visit http://www.strikingagainstbreastcancer.org/ make a tax deductible donation online.

“Hopefully every player and participant leaves with positive and good thoughts.” Conners said. “I hope they know that I’ve done everything possible to help them. Each year I add something in to make it better. So we’ll see what happens.”


Mike DeVaney Joins the Storm Tour Team

Storm Products, Inc. announced today that two-time, PBA Tour champion, Mike DeVaney, will join the Storm Tour Team as a Tour Representative.

“I am truly honored to be given this responsibility,” DeVaney said. “To say that I am excited would be an understatement! I am FIRED UP! I can't wait to visit Storm Headquarters in Brigham City, meet my co-workers, and get on the lanes and work with all the players. Most of all, I can't wait for the chance to absorb some of the vast knowledge the entire team at Storm possesses."

DeVaney has over 40 years of experience in the bowling industry. As a child, he spent most of his time with his mom at the bowling center that she managed where he could practice in the afternoons. He started working in his first bowling pro shop when he was 16 and has managed pro shops ever since. As his knowledge continued to grow on and off the lanes, his desire to become a professional bowler intensified. In the early 90’s, he competed successfully in Megabuck tournaments. He continued to learn as much as he could on the lanes and joined the PBA Tour in 1995. He has bowled professionally ever since. DeVaney has competed on television over 30 times. He has won two PBA National Titles, 15 PBA Regional Titles, Four San Diego USBC Masters Champion Titles, two North County USBC Masters Champion Titles, and several other titles. He’s a member of the North County USBC Hall of Fame. When he’s not competing, he still enjoys managing pro shops and sharing what he has learned with others.

“We are happy to welcome Mike to our Storm family,” Gary Hulsenberg, Vice President of Buisness Development said. “He has many unique talents and has a complete understanding of all the facets of the bowling industry. He will be a huge asset to Storm as we continue to grow.”

In his new position, he will be responsible for assisting the PBA, PWBA and all amateur staff players with bowling equipment during competition, coaching their physical games, as well as collaborating with the Storm Tour Team. He will also represent Storm at events and clinics throughout the bowling season. In addition, he will assist with communication and promotion of the Team Storm players.

"I would like to thank Storm Products Inc for the opportunity to join their team,” DeVaney said. “To Bill and Barbara Chrisman, Dave Symes, Gary Hulsenberg, Tour Reps Del Ballard Jr, Tim Mack, Jim Callahan, and all the great staff players I had the privilege to work with at the USBC Masters, a BIG Thank You!”

DeVaney currently lives in San Diego, CA with wife Carrie and his children Owen, Everley, and Lilia.


Dinner With Pete Weber

Storm Bowling is celebrating Pete Weber’s 20th Anniversary as a member of the Storm family.

We challenged all the pro shops in the area to encourage their customers to enter to win the contest.

We’re honored that he has chosen to be part of our team for all these years. To celebrate this milestone and another successful year on the lanes, we hosted a contest for bowlers in the Las Vegas area to win a dinner with Pete Weber!

We randomly chose 3 lucky fans and a guest to enjoy a fun filled evening with one of the greatest bowlers to play the game. We also rewarded the pro shop operator who was able to encourage the most customers to participate in the contest and that shop and a guest also joined us. The winners were met at their home by a limo and taken to a special dinner at the Golden Steer Steak House.

 

Our winners were very excited as Weber stepped out of the limo to greet them. At dinner, all the bowling fans and their guests were able to take pictures with Weber throughout the night. They could also ask him questions about his accomplishments on the lanes. They asked Pete many questions and he entertained them with stories of his prolific career. It was a wonderful night for everyone involved!

We can’t thank Pete Weber enough for being part of our team and the support of all of our fans. Here’s to many more!


Check Out The Sure Lock

The Sure Lock is available now at a pro shop near you. This solid addition to the Lock family features a lot of continuation in a ball that is designed for heavier oil. The Sure Lock features the RAD-X Core and the GI-17 Solid Reactive Coverstock. It comes out of the box at 2000 grit factory finish.

“If you’re looking for a ball that will read the midlane but still give you the continuation through the backends, the Sure Lock is the ball for you,” said Steve Kloempken.

We’ve got a couple of ball reaction videos on our YouTube channel featuring Storm Staff Members, Darren Tang and Dan Higgins. Be sure to head to our Storm Bowling channel to check them all out.

Have you added the Sure Lock to your bag? Be sure to let us know what you think by reaching out to us on our social media channels or using the #StormNation. We can’t wait to hear what you think!

Click here to view the Sure Lock ball page


Cheers to 20 Years!

Cheers to 20 Years!

January 2017 marks Pete Weber's 20th Anniversary at Storm Bowling!

His career has been legendary. He has won 37 PBA National titles including 10 major titles and 6 PBA50 National Titles including 1 major title on the senior tour. He won back-to-back PBA50 Player of the Year titles in 2015 and 2016.

Pete Weber has already had some success on the 2017 PBA Tour. He finished 7th at the Barbasol PBA Players Championship, 5th at the FireLake PBA Tournament of Champions, and finished 9th at the USBC Masters Tournament.  He’s preparing to head back out on the PBA50 Tour this summer where he’s defending his Player of the Year title.

We can’t thank Pete Weber enough for being part of our team and the support of all of our fans. Here’s to many more!

Learn more about Pete Weber.


Erica Cutler Loves the Lanes

 

Erica Cutler Loves the Lanes

Valentine’s Day has always been a special day on the lanes for Team Storm Staff Member, Erica Cutler, and 2017 was no different! Although, her success came a few days early this year. Cutler rolled a 279 triplicate for 837 on February 10 with the Storm Timeless in her Thursday night women’s league.

“The fact that the Timeless comes out on Valentine’s Day was kind of cool,” Cutler said. “I shot 864 on Valentine’s Day in 2011. My husband had got me a new pair of shoes. Last year, he got me a bowling ball and I shot 889 and broke the record for the highest woman series. He just gives me things and I break records.”

She held the national record for eight months. Cutler has been bowling since she was nine years old. She competed successfully at the high school and college level.

“My husband came to get our daughter and I told him I had 279 the first game. I left a 10 pin in the first game and I had left another 10 pin at that point. He said, ‘strike out and do it again,” Erica said.

That’s exactly what she did. Two more times to be exact. After her set was complete, Doug, and the whole league were excited about her accomplishment and congratulated her.

“I’m excited to throw that ball again!” Cutler said. “I love it. It works well for my game. I’m more of a ‘down and in’ player. I don’t throw a big hook. I really like to play the 10 board…I tell my husband, that’s my comfort zone.”

It’s a busy time on the lanes for Erica as she’s bowling the women’s city tournament in her area which is held on wood lanes. This hasn’t affected her ability to use the new Timeless. She’s ready to continue striking with it.

“I’m so proud and happy to be part of the Storm Family,” Erica said.

We’re expecting more great things from Erica in 2017! To learn more about the Timeless visit stormtimeless.com.

 

 

 

 


Life as a Tour Rep by Del Ballard Jr.

Life as a Tour Rep by Del Ballard Jr.

Life on the road as a tour representative is an incredible opportunity. I spent the whole summer on tour with the ladies on the PWBA Tour. We just wrapped up a whirlwind of a week at the 2016 U.S. Open.

The week at the U.S. Open were some of the longest days I have ever been a part of. This event included several new rules regarding equipment. You were only allowed to register 8 balls during qualifying, you could not change surfaces out on the lanes once practice started, and you could not have more than 8 balls in the locker room. Our day as a tour rep started at 7 am every morning discussing surfaces changes with each player because they were on a rotating squad schedule. A squad bowled first, followed by C squad, and then B squad. A was “fresh”, B was “burn”, and C was “double burn”. These rotate each day so that all participants see a different condition. (What is funny to me is when I bowled these events there were never these terms!).

The US Open is a tournament like no other. The mental and physical grind on the players is brutal. The mental and physical grind on the tour reps is pretty brutal too. During qualifying it’s all about keeping your angles in front of you, never losing the pocket, and making your spares. For the players we try to help them stay in the right zone on the lane and keep them in the right frame of mind. We also try to watch certain pairs that we know might be different than the others and communicate it to the players.

Marshall Kent lead the tournament by a lot and Francois Lavoie was second. Marshall put on a show through the week, playing outside the first arrow on A squad and lofting the left gutter on C squd. It was an awesome display of versatility! There was a crowd watching him on a lane that was hooking a ton. They were never easy. It’s the US Open after all! When match play rolled around, Marshall had a slight lead over Francois but Marshall started to strike…a lot. He shot 360 over and swept all 8 of his matches taking a 320 pin lead over Francois.

Match play continued the next morning and Marshall continued to bowl great opening up with a 450 pin lead. He was just incredible!! I had not seen that dominating of a display since Walter Ray lead the 1993 US Open by 530 pins over me. The next round though Francois put on his own show, bowling the highest block in match play. He cut Marshall’s lead down to 270 pins. It was awesome to watch.

Team Storm and Roto Grip had an unbelievable week on the lanes! Heading into the stepladder finals, Anthony Simonsen was third, Shawn Maldonado was fourth, and John Szczerbinski rounded out the top 5. On a side note, we had Martin Larsen in 6th, Andres Gomez was 7th, and Arturo Quintero was 8th. 11 out of 12 guys were throwing Storm/Roto Grip. I have never seen such a dominant display by our equipment. Great bowlers, great bowling balls.


Like Nothing You've Ever Thrown Before

 

The Timeless is the first release in our all-new Signature Line, an unprecedented and versatile series focusing on one-of-a-kind products.

This ball features the unparalleled Dual-Drive weight block and superior R2S coverstock. The combination of these unique attributes gives the ball a fast-revving benefit like the !Q Tour with the hitting power of the Hy-Road.

Have you had a chance to throw the Timeless yet? Tell us your experience by posting on social media with the #StormTimeless.

Learn more by clicking here. 

 


Pearson Rolls 300 While Fighting Cancer

Pearson Rolls 300 While Fighting Cancer

Kenneth Pearson may have already had a few 300 games but his league is going to remember the one he had in January for a long time. Fran Deken, who bowls league with Kenneth, posted this message on Facebook:

“Tonight I witnessed an amazing 300 game by Ken Pearson. What made it so amazing is that he's between chemo rounds for colon cancer and has even bowled league while wearing a portable chemo pack. Not his first perfect game but certainly a memorable one. Now that's passion for the game. Ball of choice was an IQ Tour Fusion.”

When we saw Fran’s message and the video of his 300, we had to hear more about Kenneth’s story. He has been bowling for 20 years and currently bowls four leagues a week. He was diagnosed with colon cancer in June and had surgery in August. After his surgery was complete, he was in the hospital for 11 days and couldn’t wait to get back to the lanes.

“I did what the doctors told me.” Kenneth said. “They said once I got my staples off and I could get around more thenI could go back to bowling.”

His teammates were anxious and kept asking him when he’d be back on the lanes. He knew he had to wait until he got back to the doctor and was fully released to bowl.

“I went to my appointment and I said, ‘You know what I’m going to ask. My teammates want to know when they can have their anchorman back.’”

What made it so amazing is that he's between chemo rounds for colon cancer and has even bowled league while wearing a portable chemo pack.

Kenneth, who is also blind in one eye is set to continue his radiation and chemo again in February, but he’s not ready to let it bring him down.

“My wife, 18-year-old, and 8-year-old keep me going,” Kenneth said.  “I’m not going to let it knock me down. I’ll stay motivated and keep on going.”

Kenneth chooses to throw Storm bowling balls because they roll best for his style. In fact, his bag is full of Storm. He says it’s hard to choose a favorite but his favorite right now is the Snap Lock. His 18-year-old got it for him for his birthday and he rolled a 300 with it. He dreams to bowl some professional events someday.

“Right now, I got to keep fighting the cancer,” Kenneth said. “If you fight it, then you can beat it.”


Storm Youth Championships

The countdown is on. We’re less than two weeks away from the first Storm Youth Championships event.

On March 24, we’re heading to the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, NV to meet youth players and their families from all around the United States. We’ve got tons of fun events and seminars planned in addition to the competition. The youth bowlers will be able to take in an exclusive tour of the National Bowling Stadium, meet some of the athletes who are part of team Storm, practice with the pros, and ask questions all weekend long.

The tournament begins on Saturday at 9 am. The bowlers will compete on four different patterns during the four rounds of competition. We will crown champions in U12, U15, and U20 boys’ and girls’ divisions. The top two in each division will be named to the 2017 Storm All-American Team.

Charitable giving has long been a focus at Storm so it only makes sense that we align the Storm Youth Championships with a worthy charity. This year’s charity of choice is Ballard vs. The Big “C,” known as BVBC.

The Storm Youth Championships would not be possible without all of the sponsors of the event. Special thanks to Roto Grip, Logo Infusion, Kegel, Turbo 2-n-1 Grips, The Tri-Properties - Silver Legacy - Eldorado - Circus Circus.

Follow all the action on our Storm Jr. Facebook Page. We’ll see you in Reno! #SYC