July 15, 2010
By Melinda Swenson
When Sherri Rhule was six or seven years old, her parents made her go to the bowling alley with her older sister Carol, who wanted to hang out with her boyfriend who worked there. That was the first time that Rhule ever threw a bowling ball. Now, after years of dedication to her sport, Rhule is one of the top women bowlers in the United States Bowling Congress.
Sometimes life throws us a curve and we make the best of it.
In the case of Sherri Rhule with Business and Financial Services at Colorado State University, she was only six or seven when she had to endure a number of monotonous evenings at a bowling alley with her older sister Carol.
“My sister wanted to go because her boyfriend worked there and my parents wouldn’t let her go unless she took me along,” Sherri says.
So while her sister Carol and her boyfriend flirted, Sherri found an open lane and began throwing the ball.
Now she’s one of the top women bowlers in the United States Bowling Congress.
Rhule competed earlier this year at the highest level (the Classic Division) in the 2010 USBC Championships in El Paso, Texas. In a competitive field that numbered around 30,000 and included pro bowlers, she placed 28th in the Singles competition, 15th in Doubles, and 8th in All Events.
“That means I ranked 8th after all my scores were added up,” Rhule says. “It’s fun — I don’t get nervous because bowlers of all abilities are at the Championships. You can enter the competition whether your average is 120 or 220. My average going in was over 180. My game scores were 213, 208, and 206 in the singles competition and 220, 181, and 259 in doubles."
Sherri’s friend Denise Morgan, who works in CSU’s Mechanical Engineering department, says that Sherri works at improving her game by spending her evenings bowling at Sweetheart Lanes in Loveland. “To have a national bowler — one of our own in the top spots is awesome!” Morgan says.
“I’ve been bowling with four of the women on my team for 22 years and with one of them for 16,” Rhule says. "Two of them work here at CSU — Charlotte Shanahan in Accounts Receivable and Janelle Dowling in Housing and Dining Services.
“We travel together (without husbands) and have a good time camping-out at the motels and seeing the towns where the tournaments are held. We're good friends and get along fabulously."
“I travel with several bowling balls,” Rhule says, “Because you don’t know if the lanes are going to be oily or dry. I prefer an oily lane, because when it’s dry my ball hooks too much.”
As it turns out, Rhule has a pretty wicked hook shot.