|Mike Herbert, $2,000 richer, courtesy of the Club Tour's Perfect Game Pool|
Another drama unfolded during the Club Tour event in the preliminary round of the tournament that was the buzz of the fivepin world on the weekend of November 19th and 20th. Oshawa, Ontario’s Mike Herbert joined an elite group of fivepinners when he attained perfection by rolling a flawless 450 effort in the opening game of a re-entry in the event.
Along with the prestige of achieving perfection, Mike did his share to break the bank, as he won $2,000.00 in a special incentive ‘side pool’ offered for the first perfect game of the tournament.
Unquestionably, the moment must have been tense. When asked about the most nerve-racking point of the landmark effort, Herbert elaborated: “I found the 9th frame the most nerve racking, because it was the shot after a really heavy strike. I took off some speed on the following shot, which was the ninth frame. By taking speed off, I took a chance of not following through and missing center”.
Obviously, Herbert made the right adjustment, as he was unshakable on the 12th and final ball, and the decisive pitch that ultimately followed. The moment was indeed magic for Mike as he was immediately greeted with appreciative cheers from all in attendance who witnessed the spectacle.
This was Mike’s first perfect game of his career. His high effort prior to this was a 440 game, occurring when he was 18 in a youth event. At that time, Herbert was perfect through 11 shots, and ended up punching out the headpin on the all-important final delivery. This time, Mike once again stayed true and the result earned him a substantial $2,000.00 payday.
There were 2 bits or irony with Herbert’s 450 game. First, Mike now has held up his end of perfection in the Herbert household, as his wife, Christina rolled a 450 game last summer in a tournament event. And second, Mike did qualify for the match play round of the weekend’s Club Tour, but not on the basis of his re-entry, which included the perfect game—his initial entry in the event was just high enough to advance past the preliminaries.
As was the case with Karole McDonnell being a fivepinner who also excels at duckpin bowling, so is the same true for Mike Herbert. Of all the Canadians who have migrated to the men’s side of pro level duckpin competition, Mike has arguably taken the biggest strides towards winning a DPBA event. Although fivepinner Jeff Young has earned a DPBA Rookie of the Year honor and a recent 2nd place finish in 2011, Herbert was the first to break the ice to advance to a championship match on the men’s tour, thus bringing recognition to the Canadians as a force to be reckoned with on the DPBA. Herbert joined the duckpin tour a few years back, and was a finalist in the 2010 Duckpin Olympics in Hagerstown, Maryland, where he was runner-up to John Zikis in his quest for the $10,000 grand prize for the event.
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