Poelking Lanes Dayton Challenge set for March 2

Challenging lane conditions and intense competition – the Midwest Scratch Bowling Series isn’t easy, it isn’t supposed to be.

“If we wanted sheer numbers, we’d do handicap tournaments and house shots,” said Brian Regan, founder of the Midwest Scratch Bowling Series. “I’m a scratch bowler and I wanted something better for bowlers like me, something I believed in.”

Regan, of Flint, launched the tournament series in 2011 in Michigan as the Michigan Scratch Bowling Series. He managed seven or eight tournaments the first year, but interest quickly grew in communities beyond the state line, like Fort Wayne, Indiana and Toledo.

»RELATED: Dayton to host state bowling tournament

“There were bowlers who wanted a challenge, who wanted to bowl on a sport shot,” he said.

The Michigan tournaments soon expanded to neighboring states and the Midwest Scratch Bowling Series now holds events in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Michigan – more than 100 a year. Dayton will soon play host to an MSBS tournament as the Poelking Lanes Dayton Challenge is slated for March 2.

The one-day scratch event starts with five games of qualifying across five pairs of lanes. The field will then be cut to the top 15 – based on 60 entries – for the eliminator format rounds. It is open to male or female bowlers of all ages. Youth bowlers are eligible for SMART Scholarships.

“The Dayton event, because of the entry fee, is probably more for the serious bowler, someone who considers themself highly competitive, but anyone can bowl in it,” Regan said. “You have to bowl against the best to be the best.”

And the Midwest Scratch Bowling Series puts competitors to the test.

“We, often, put down a more difficult pattern than the PBA,” Regan said. “But, I truly believe if you want to make the sport better, this is what we need to do.”

Regan would like to expand the series to other Midwestern states like Wisconsin and Minnesota and is looking for ways to increase the prize fund. The total payout for the Dayton event – based on 60 entries – would be $3,230, with the winner earning $1,000.

For more information on the Dayton event or the Midwest Scratch Bowling Series, visit www.scratchbowling.com or join the Midwest Scratch Bowling Series on Facebook.

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