Ability and intensity have been forged into an athletic career that has catapulted Carl Kinyon into the Lockport Bowling Association Hall of Fame.
Kinyon and Don Voss will be inducted to the hall in ceremonies next Saturday during the association's awards dinner at 7 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Lockport.
The 38-year-old Kinyon's achievements include 23 Lockport association city championships, three Allie Brandt Memorial Match Play championships, 17 perfect games, three 800 series and a single season high average of 228.
Additionally, Kinyon was a winner on the Channel 4 "Beat The Champ" program for 11 straight weeks in 1986. In 1989 he was a member of the Niagara Falls Bowl-O-Drome team that finished eighth in the ABC Tournament. In 1990, he won the Bowlers Journal Scratch Doubles title with Brian Kretzer of Miamisburg, Ohio, with a tournament record 1,505.
Kinyon gave the PBA Tour a try in the early '80s, and despite the accomplishments listed above, he said the highlight of his career came at a PBA stop on April 8, 1981.
"The one thing that sticks out is my first 300," he said. "It came in Garden City (Long Island) on an end pair, about lanes 49 or 50. When I walked to my next lanes assignment around (lanes) 9 and 10, the whole building stood up and clapped. That was 16 years ago and it seems like yesterday. For all those people to do that was unbelievable.
"I shot 160 the next game. I was fourth after the first round, but I bowled horrible after that and didn't even cash."
After a couple of years Kinyon left the pro tour, but he bowled in PBA regionals for a while and continues to compete in big money tournaments. He currently bowls in four leagues with a 218 composite average.
He said 1986 was his best year overall.
"In 1986, the year I was on 'Beat the Champ,' I bowled good that year. I was in the finals of most every regional, but that was my last year with the PBA."
Kinyon's intensity does not always endear him to his fellow competitors.
"I scooch for everything I can get," he said. "Some people misinterpret that."
Jim Wangler of the Bowling Proprietors Association All-Star League, and a former teammate of Kinyon's, says: "If you know him outside the lanes, he's a different guy. I bowled against Carl for 10 years before I got the opportunity to bowl on his team.
"Because of our draft situation (drafted players are not always on the same team from year to year) you don't always get a bond or chemistry. The chemistry on our (1995-96 South Transit Lanes championship) team was phenomenal. Then I got to know him off the lanes.
"He's a great bowler and an intense guy, real intense. If he needs a strike, if he needs to take the teeth out of his mouth, he'll do it. On the lanes, he's a grizzly bear, but off the lanes, he's different and that's to his credit.
"Team bowling is where he really shines," Wangler said. "He's the ultimate team player; he's always cognizant of what the team is doing. He always has an idea, not telling you what to do, but promoting the open question: does the ball break early or whatever? He sees what's happening on the lanes. He's trying to relate how it might help you."
Wangler calls Kinyon "Yoda."
"Yoda was the Jedi Master (in "Star Wars") and I called him the Jedi Master long before I called him Yoda. Sometimes it's like he had a premonition before coming to the lanes, but I know he's given it a lot of thought before he even gets there, calling on his experience from when he bowled there before, what ball he used or what the conditions were. It could be any (bowling center or) lanes. He'd pull out another nugget I never saw before."
Voss a two-way threat
Last season, for the first time in eight years as an ambidextrous bowler, Don Voss averaged 200 as a right-hander and as a lefty. An injury to his right thumb in his job as a mechanic led to his two-handed pursuits.
Voss, 50, was a member of the scratch team champions in the Lockport city tournament the last two years. He won bronze and silver medals in the 1992 Empire State Games and has averaged 200 or better for the last 10 years.
He has 10 sanctioned 300 games, a career high 813 series and a single season high average of 215. So far this season, Voss is averaging 225 in two leagues as a right-hander and 210 in three leagues as a lefty. He is also a three-time champion on the Tops TV Challenge cable TV show.
In 1991, Voss and his son, Bob, won a doubles tournament at South Transit Lanes, which stands out as his most notable accomplishment. "We bowled 1,523 and it was the second highest score in the nation that year," Voss said.
Voss attributes his two-handed success to "just practice. Not as much as I used to, but as much as I can. I bowl jackpots (15 to 20 games) usually with the guys on Sunday mornings, but for me that's practice."
True to his occupation, Voss said he'd like to expand his hobbies to auto racing, but "I just don't have enough money."
Around the lanes
The Troyer Farm/Dan Dee and Crystal Lite junior traveling leagues have joined the Young American Bowling Alliance Junior Olympic Gold program. The local leagues are among the first to join the revamped nationwide organization. Local members in the scratch division will be eligible for a gold card, based on average requirements, and have the opportunity to win a paid entry in the National Junior Olympic Gold Tournament next year in Reno. . . . John Kirsch of Lockport will receive his Eagle Scout award at an Eagle Court of Honor at 7 p.m. on Oct. 11 at Emmanuel United Methodist Church in Lockport. Kirsch completed a photo display for the Lockport Bowling Association Hall of Fame for his Boy Scout community project. . . . An AMF (formerly Conbow) Singles Tournament will be held today and Sunday at Lancaster Lanes with squads today at 3 and 4:30 p.m. and Sunday at 9 and 10:30 a.m., noon and 1:30 p.m. with match game finals at 3. Entry is $26, re-entry $24 with $500 for first place. Handicaps are 80 percent of 215 for men and 85 percent of 215 for women. Jerry Jesionowski defeated Ed Cratsenberg, 248-205, in the season's first event.