A handful of local bowlers will get to live that dream next Tuesday, when the Professional Bowlers Association finishes up its nearly week-long Maine Event at Bayside Bowl in Portland with the PBA Maine Shootout tournament.

Lewiston natives Scott Moore, James Goulding and Sarah Pelletier, Topsham’s Jimmy Clark and Terrance Robinson of Gray will be among nine Maine bowlers with spots in the 64-player field, which will pit them against PBA regulars.

This is the second year of the Portland event, and Moore, Clark and Robinson were all fortunate enough to be part of last year’s inaugural shootout. Moore and Robinson took advantage of a dream scenario and beat professionals — Moore took out Sean Rash in the round of 16, while Robinson knocked off Walter Ray Williams Jr., the PBA record holder for career titles with 47, in the first round. Clark narrowly lost to PBA pro Anthony Pepe in the first round.

“It was great experience, for sure,” Clark said. “I, myself, bowled well. Had some misfortune because I got a guy that bowled better than me. Scott, on the other hand, he bowled really well and ended up winning two matches.”

“Honestly, the first match it was more like a nerves kind of thing, just because of what it was. The second match I bowled against Sean Rash, who is one of the best bowlers in the world,” Moore said. “The pair I was on was great bowlers, so at first it was just like taking it all in. It was just cool to be there and be bowling with those guys. And then to actually be able to have an opportunity to actually beat one of them was even better. That was pretty amazing for a kid that’s been bowling for 35 years, and as a kid wanted to be a pro bowler, that was the highlight of my career, so to speak, to beat one of the best.”

Moore and Clark, along with Goulding and Pelletier, all bowl together in a weekly league at Sparetime. Thursday marked a warm-up at their home lanes before making the trip south to Portland early next week.


The quartet “qualified” for the Maine Shootout thanks to Bayside Bowl owner Charlie Mitchell, who picked some of the state’s best bowlers to take on the best in the world.

“I’m definitely nervous. Competing against all the best guys in the world is kind of insane,” said Pelletier, who is the lone non-pro female in the tournament. “But I’m really excited. I think I’m more excited than I am nervous.”

“There’s not really a whole lot to be nervous about. They’re coming to play on our court,” said Moore, who owns the pro shop at Sparetime. “It’s their job to beat us. It’s not my job to bowl. They should be worried.”

While Pelletier and Goulding didn’t participate in last year’s event, they were in attendance to cheer on their league mates. Pelletier said she even called out of work to watch Moore play a second day.

“Watching Scotty bowl last year, and Jimmy, it was pretty impressive to see not only their physical game, but their mental game was pretty solid,” Goulding said.

Those two weren’t the only ones at Bayside Bowl to cheer on both the local players and the pros.


“Last year was crazy,” Moore said. “I made it to the second day, and there was people there — people that came out of the woodwork.”

“Any time you go to a professional event, the pros have an abundance of applause compared to anybody like us in that situation. In Portland, it’s 100-percent reversed,” Clark added. “Not that they’re against the pros. Everybody was there for support.”

That support will likely make the trip south from Lewiston. Goudling says some of his Sparetime teammates plan to take the day off from work Tuesday to watch him bowl.

Who the local bowlers face in the first round won’t be known until Monday night, when matchups are drawn and the bracket is finalized. Clark said he wouldn’t mind facing PBA pro Jason Belmonte (the two-handed bowler from Australia), while Goulding imagines a dream duel with PBA legend Pete Weber, who he said is one of his idols. Moore would like to go toe-to-toe with either one (and hopefully beat another pro), while Pelletier said she doesn’t mind who she faces, but admitted it would be cool to beat female pros Liz Johnson and Danielle McEwan (who Pelletier bowled against in college).

And while the odds are seemingly stacked against the local players, they all say they like their chances of winning.

“You have to have that mentality that you’re going to go in and win,” Goulding said. “It’s like in football, they say ‘on any given Sunday…’ Well hopefully for us, on any given Tuesday…”

“You have to go in there hungry knowing that it’s going to be something you work for,” Clark said. “You get to bowl three games, roughly 50 shots over those three games, you got to make all of them count.”

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