News: Bowlers strike at Commander’s Cup Bowling League
Story by Christine Cabalo
MARINE CORPS BASE HAWAII - With either a high or low score, Commander’s Cup Bowling League players are having fun rolling through the league’s seventh week of play.
The league, which started in November, features 10 teams of four players who bowl Monday nights at K-Bay Lanes. As of Jan. 9, team “Boardshorts” is currently in first place with 22 points.
“It’s a great and easy league to do because it’s only 12 weeks,” said Mark Gleason, bowling league president and player on the “Boardshorts” team. “You feel good having competition and camaraderie. It’s a great thing to do to get out and have fun.”
Gleason, an active duty Marine and a member of the 2011 All-Marine Bowling Team, attributes his team’s success to dedicated practice. He has encouraged others in his unit to play in the league, helping them practice regularly so the unit’s players bowl consistent strikes or spares.
Chris Esquivel, who works under Gleason and is a new Commander’s Cup bowler, plays on a team with others from their unit. Esquivel said his team, nicknamed “Off,” has made steady progress throughout the weeks of bowling. Even during times when strikes are hard to come by, he explained playing with friends in the newly renovated bowling alley is a good night out. Whenever he or his teammates bowl a strike, it’s a cause for celebration with a quick victory dance.
“If I’m still around for it, I’ll try doing the upcoming bowling league in the spring,” Esquivel said. “More people should join in. Win or lose, it’s still a lot of fun on Monday night.”
Other players are just as excited for bowling league night. The “Lifesavers” team, comprised of U.S. Coast Guard Sector Honolulu personnel, wears bright candy-colored shirts with their circular team logo on it. “Lifesavers” are among the top four highest scoring teams of the league, earning several of the four maximum points teams can earn each week.
Many league players continue to participate because they enjoy something more besides the thrill of landing a strike. Bruce Arai, whose team is nicknamed “Effin’ H,” said his team has gone through a roller coaster of high and low scores during the league. Yet when Arai is with his teammates, comprised of fellow Marine Corps Community Services employees, the points don’t matter as much.
“We’re shooting for better consistency,” he said. “But we come to the league more for the community of it rather than the score.”
As league president, Gleason said he likes how friendly his fellow league bowlers are while playing. The players all cheer for each other, giving high-fives to other teams for especially good plays. His suggestion for anyone who has a hard time forming a team, or any interested individual players, is to come to a game or contact K-Bay Lanes.
“A lot of times, we’ll have a single player or a couple who are also trying to find another group,” Gleason said. “It’s really a great way to meet new people.”
The league will be on break Monday, but the K-Bay Lanes will be open for playing. The Commander’s Cup Bowling League returns Jan. 23 starting at 6 p.m. and plays through February. For more information about signing up for upcoming bowling leagues at K-Bay Lanes, call 254-7693.