Nate Gelling defeated defending champion Todd Edelen 257-237 in the exciting final match to capture the title at this year's edition of the Bill Meagor Peterson Point Scratch Bowling Classic, held recently at Star Lanes and Kingpin Lanes.
Gelling, who had won every other tournament sponsored by the Butte Bowling Association at least once in his young career, averaged 230 and won 8.5 games of the dozen leading up to the stepladder finals of the tourney he had not yet won. Gelling added the Meagor title to his collection this time, defeating 36 of Butte's best bowlers in the process.
The first night of the tournament was dominated by Tony Woodward, who rolled a sparkling 769 series for his first three games. Woodward led the second and third rounds as well, before being passed by Gelling after round four heading into the stepladder finals.
The stepladder began with fifth-seeded Zac Wooten downing No. 4 John Braderson 248-202. In the next match, Wooten lost to Edelen, the third seed. Edelen rolled the high game of the tourney with his 279-227 win. Edelen then defeated second-seeded Woodward by 11 pins in a tiebreaker, coming after a 208-208 deadlock. This, the most exciting match of the tourney, was followed by the final shootout between Edelen and Gelling, good friends away from the lanes.
In other tourney highlights, Butte Association and Montana Association hall of famer Bill Meagor, who won the title in 1986, and whose name the tourney bears, continued his string as the only bowler to participate in all 30 tourneys. Although he missed the cut, Meagor remains a tough competitor, averaging 197 last year at the age of 70.
This year's skins game was dominated by John Broderson, who took every skin but one. Kim Younce won the other one.
A new event in the tourney was the countdown-countup challenge, where Keith Meagor defeated Nate Gelling 13-10 to claim the first championship. The consolation was a three-way tie between Walt Parrett, Deb Martinich and Frank Butori Jr.
The remaining Sunday-morning tourney qualifiers and their Peterson point totals follow:
6, Jim McKenzie, 59.31;
7, Mark Hodges, 58.43;
8, Barry Butori, 58.05;
9, Dave Martinich, 57.43;
10, Keith Meagor, 57.37;
11, Leo Levengood, 55.16;
12, Keith Woods, 53.05;
13, Dan Newton, 52.47;
14, Bill Keller, 52.12;
15, Bob Shaw, 52.11;
16, Dan Grundhauser, 50.42;
17, Denton Martinich, 49.18;
18, Laurie Tripp, 47.05.
— Submitted by tourney manager Walt Parrett.