By Chris Hester
In October 2016, Hammer’s Liz Kuhlkin stepped up in the 10th frame of the third game in the Reis Group Kim Brown Memorial League at Schenectady's Towne Bowling Academy with a chance to throw three strikes and set the highest series ever bowled by a female in history.
If you were one of the hundreds of people that tuned in for her Facebook live broadcast of that moment you already know she succeeded.
On February 6th Liz went live again on Facebook, this time with a chance to strike out in the 10th frame in the same league to become the first women in history to bowl a 900 series.
Let that sink in for a minute.
Unfortunately she came up just a little short this time but ended with an incredible 879 series.
In a span of just five months, Kuhlkin not only broke the record for the highest three game series ever bowled by a female athlete, but she put herself in position to break her own record.
Even more amazing is the fact that Liz bowled these sets with two different bowling balls. For the 890 series she used a Hammer Scandal Pearl but for the 879 set she was using a Track Kinetic Emerald.
“EBI is so successful because they are known for having a variety of balls for all styles,”Kuhlkin said. “When I got the Kinetic I tried it and instantly loved it.”
It is rare we get the chance to speak to someone that has bowled two such sets and we were curious how she felt heading into the 10th frame on those nights:
“The night I bowled 890 I was in a different mindset because I had no idea I had a chance for a world record,” she said. “I only thought about trying to set my association record which was 889 at the time. The 879 series however takes the cake. The consecutive strikes was a very nerve racking thing but adding the possibility of being the first woman to shoot 900 was mind boggling.”
Kuhlkin, the former Nebraska Cornhusker College bowling star, is gearing up for her third season on the PWBA tour but she may be doing so without her record breaking Scandal Pearl.
“After some discussion I will be donating that ball to Ebonite International,” Liz said. “I certainly had some reservations about agreeing to give the ball up, however it is awesome to think that my ball will be a piece of history that thousands of people would be able to see.”