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Buddy Engleman has been a top-notch bowler in our area since the 1960s and has averaged over 200 for more than 30 years. In the association’s first official ranking (for the 1966-67 season), he missed appearing in the “Top 10” by a mere fractional pin (.122). Since then, he has been ranked eight times: • 1967-68 – 6th • 1968-69 – 4th • 1969-70 – 9th • 1971-72 – 9th • 1973-74 – 5th • 1976-77 – 4th • 1980-81 – 2nd • 1982-83 – 7th
Furthermore, in a document prepared by future Hall of Famer Chuck Gannon Jr. that was published in the October 1972 issue of BOWL Magazine, Buddy placed third in a composite average book listing among the top 55 bowlers who competed in at least one league for the 10-season period of 1960-61 to 1969-70.
Buddy won Association Tournament titles in consecutive years, capturing the Classic Division Doubles with Bob McKee in 1968 and then scoring 694 to lead his “Mario’s Italian Groceries” fivesome to the 1969 Classic Division Team crown. (Incidentally, Buddy’s team placed second in both the 1968 Association Tournament and the 1967 American Bowling Congress Championships in Miami, Fla.)
After winning the 1971 Maryland Men’s Open, he represented the state in the U.S. Open in St. Paul, Minn.
Buddy still competes in several area leagues and currently carries a “book” average of 216. His highest average the previous five seasons has been 223 (2010-11), 217 (2009-10, 2008-09, and 2006-07) and 216 (2007-08). He has multiple Honor Score awards to his credit, with his latest 300 game rolled during the 2011 summer season.
He has been a good ambassador for bowling and has exhibited great sportsmanship through the years. In 1970, he supported youth bowling by teaming with future Hall of Famers Elmer Breeden, Mike Hahn, and Larry O’Neill in an exhibition match against the area’s top junior bowlers. Three years earlier, he was asked and agreed to bowl with a team that included Breeden and another future Hall of Famer, Jim Robinette, in a special match against other top area bowlers in front of a large crowd of spectators at Fair Lanes Wheaton Plaza for the benefit of Muscular Dystrophy.
Many area bowlers who have competed against Buddy Engleman have long believed that he belongs in the Nation’s Capital Area USBC Association Hall of Fame. This omission exists no longer, and he is a superb addition to it.