CEDAR RAPIDS — Early last year, Cherie Roe was bowling with her three-member team in the Lancer Lanes Classic League, a typical occurrence.
But this turned out to be no typical night.
Over the course of a few hours, Roe’s bowling career changed forever. She rolled a very impressive 835 series with games of 276, 300 and 259.
In Game 1, she rolled seven strikes before pulling it a little in the eighth frame and leaving the 5, 9 and 10 pins. She then ran two more strikes before leaving a stone 10-pin with a great shot for a 276.
Game 2 was nothing but strikes for her first 300. She ran the first seven strikes again in Game 3 before adding a couple of spares and a strike for 259.
She recorded 29 strikes, out of a possible 36.
Never in her wildest dreams did she think of rolling an 800 series, let alone an 835. That put her in the record books with the third highest women’s series in the association, just behind Tricia Nederhiser (836 in February 2005) and Shawna Sailor, who shot an incredible 843 in December of 2005. The latter also is the highest in the state for women.
Roe bowls in one league and tries to sub when asked. Her averages have been 200-plus for the last 10-plus years. Her highest series before the 835 was a 772 and her highest game was a 299, which she rolled in the women’s state tournament at May City Bowl.
She said he was “excited and it seemed surreal at the time” after the historic series.
Roe, who started bowling in Dyersville at the age of 5, has the sport in her blood. Her mother (Carol Benn) was a former member of the WPBA and her father (Loras Benn) gave her advice she still uses today — “You can pick up any spare with the third arrow as long as you move your feet to the correct spot and throw at the pins.”
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Her career started at Ertl Lanes in Dyersville, which was owned by her uncle and then her parents (1986-2016) and renamed Royal Lanes.
Her brothers — Rich, Fred and Corey — all bowled with her growing up. Corey is a member of the Dyersville Bowling Hall of Fame along with her father. Her mother is in the Dubuque Bowling Hall of Fame.
Roe, who moved to Cedar Rapids in 2009, broke her back at the age of 16 in a car accident and now has a plate, overcoming an obstacle that would keep many away from the lanes. She has persevered and lights up the centers with her infectious smile. Bowling with her sons is huge on her list and she loves to watch them grow with the sport.
“Bowling should be fun, (a) great way to meet people,” she said when asked for advice. “Spares are just as important as strikes, a good attitude goes a long way and choose happy as people want to be around those that are happy as well.
“This is my release from day to day stress.”