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Point Systems in Bowling

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  • Point Systems in Bowling

    There are several point systems used in bowling, this will be a listing of them. I'll start here with the Petersen Point System

    The Petersen Point System is often confused with other point systems. This is because there seems to be no universally accepted definition of Peterson Bonus Points and varies between leagues or tournaments.

    One definition that seems to be used most often is where a player or team receives one point for every xx number of pins scored.

    Usually, You get 1 point for every "Block" of 25, 50 or 100 pins of total scratch or handicap scores. The points are then calculated by taking the player's or team's total scores (scratch or handicap) and dividing it by the block size.

    For example, if you used a 50 pin block and bowled a 575, it would be 11 points. (575 divided by 50= 11.5, with the fraction dropped).

    Another variation of the Petersen point system, is where points are awarded for each "block" of pins scored and for victories. For example, if the "block" is defined as 50 pins, and you shoot 575, you would receive 11 Petersen points. In addition, bonus points are awarded for victories. (A variation of this is where you don't drop the fraction.)

    Example if you won 2 games (out of 3) plus series and 10 points were awarded for each victory, you would receive a total of 41 points for the evening. (20 points for the 2 games and 10 for the series. 11+20+10=41)

    Born: Sept. 23, 1883
    Died: June 20, 1958
    Inducted 1963

    A scoring system and a bowling tournament have etched Petersen's name indelibly in the upper strata of bowling contributors. He started his famous Petersen Classic in 1921 and that event's popularity has grown each year. Petersen also originated the point system bearing his name. He also was a founder of the Bowling Proprietors Association of America in 1932 and a prime mover of high school bowling.

  • #2
    Another system is the Match Point System, this is the main one people confuse with the Petersen System.

    In the Match Point system each player bowls against the player opposite them in the opponent’s lineup. The points are awarded on an individual and team basis.

    Typically in this system a teams lineup is sorted by average, starting from the lowest average player to highest average player. Then the players bowl against each other respectively for each point in a game.

    (Note: Lineup doesn't have too be sorted by average. If the league or tournament rules permit you to set the lineup another way. Also one of USBC's rules regarding Match point is "The team scheduled on the odd lane enters its lineup first." This wouldn't really apply if your sorting by average.)

    Example: A 21 point match point system with 4 players per team.

    In this example 21 points is the maximum number of points possible each week a team could win.

    Individual players get 1 point for each game won and 1 point for series win, for a total of 4 points possible.
    Teams get 1 point for each game won and 2 points for series win, for a total of 5 points.

    Now this system is good for a scratch league, your basically matching bowlers of similar average against each other and it's a more competitive situation.

    A very competitive handicap league could use it, but it takes a little more work. Because you have to add in the handicap's to see who won their point every game. Though since the advent of automatic scorers it's easier, because they can show handicap scores as well as scratch.

    But for a average handicap league it wouldn't really that be suitable IMO.


    • #3
      Also here's a variation of Match Points that uses a Pins over Average Method.

      The winner of the individual points are determined by the number of pins each individual bowled over their

      The bowler highest over their individual average will earn the point, even if the opposing bowler bowled higher scores.

      The first bowler on team 1 has an average of 140. This bowler bowls a score of 155. This is 15 pins over his/her average.
      The first bowler on team 2 has an average of 198. This bowler bowls a score of 208. This is 10 pins over his/her average.

      Even though the first bowler on team 2 had the higher score, the first bowler on team 1 earns the point because he/she was
      higher over their average, 15 pins compared to 10 pins.


      • #4
        Now there is also the standard Team versus Team system, that most bowlers are familiar with.
        This is where your team plays another team in head to head competition, on the same pair of lanes.
        The team with the highest score (including Handicap if used) each game, wins the points for that game. Also the team with the highest series receives points for the series win.

        In a 7 point system the team would get 2 points per game win and 1 point for series. For a total of 7 points.

        Looking at the Team versus Team system. It's nothing more than the match point system, Just using the team scores.

        There's a variation of this called "Team versus Field", this one rarely seen.
        In this your team plays all the teams in the league at one time. Here you receive points (usually 1) for each team you beat in the league.

        Example: If your league has 12 teams, the maximum amount of points per game you could win is 11.


        • #5
          Now I ran across a interesting point system used in a British senior tournament.

          It uses your score plus bonus pins, it starts with a age bonus.

          Age Bonus: For each year over the age of fifty one bonus pin will be add. ie Aged 53 on 1st May, 3 bonus pins; aged 62 12 bonus pins. There is no maximum age bonus.

          Then during the Qualifying Rounds they added some more bonus pins.

          On each day in each group (Nth & Sth) and in each division (Male and female) the highest scoring team (inc age bonus) at the end of each of the six games will receive a 100 pin bonus. The second team will receive 80pins, third 60, fourth 40 and finally fifth 20 pins.

          Then during the Grand Finals you got more bonus pins which they added to your team score and other bonus pins. Then they added that all up and divided by 100 to get how many points you got.

          Each team will compete on a round robin basis, playing one game against each other to a pre-arranged schedule. Teams will be awarded 20 bonus pins per bowler for a win (100 for men’s team 80 for women’s) and 10 for a draw. The total team pinfall including age bonuses and any win bonus will then be converted into points by dividing by 100.


          • #6
            Petraglia Scoring System

            The Petraglia Scoring System counts a player’s total number of shots rather than total pinfall. A bowler throws as many shots as it takes to knock down all 10 pins in a frame.

            The scoring is similar to golf in that the lower your score, the better. A strike is one(1) point. A normal spare is two(2) points.

            In this system, the perfect score possible is 10, as there are no fill balls in the tenth frame.

            Example: Say you throw your first ball and leave the 7-10 split. You throw your second ball and hit the 7, but leave the 10. You throw your third ball and miss the 10 completely. Finally, on your fourth ball, you hit the ten, you get a score of 4 for that frame.