United States Bowling Congress Hall of Famer Jimmy Schroeder of Tonawanda has accomplished a lot in more than seven decades on the lanes, and he added one more milestone to his resume over the weekend when he competed in his 65th consecutive USBC Open Championships.
The 83-year-old right-hander has overcome health challenges, including three major hip surgeries, to keep his consecutive streak intact, and his dedication helped him become the sixth bowler to reach the 65-year mark.
“Bowling has been great to me, and I have met so many wonderful people,” said Schroeder, who was inducted into the USBC Hall of Fame in 1990. “At this time in my life, this means a lot to me, and it gives me something to look forward to each year. Sometimes, just walking from the hotel is a challenge because I just don’t have the stamina anymore, but I’m still hoping to make it a few more years to catch Joe and Bill.”
Late USBC Hall of Famer Joe Norris of San Diego and the late Bill Doehrman of Fort Wayne, Ind., each competed in the USBC Open Championships a record 71 times, while Sylvester Thiel of Lake City, Minn., is the active participation leader with 68 years. USBC Hall of Famer Bill Lillard Sr. of Houston (66) and the late Les Berry of Wooster, Ohio (66), are the other bowlers to reach 65 years.
This year, Schroeder, who is one of just 13 members of the tournament’s 100,000-Pin Club, shot 530 in singles, 485 in doubles and 479 in team for a 1,494 total. In his 65-year career, he has knocked down 115,397 pins and is third on the career pinfall list. Norris tops the list with 123,770, while fellow Hall of Famer Lillard Sr. is the active pinfall leader with a total of 121,434.