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Student sets local bowling record

857 three-game series

Student makes local bowling history: three-game series of 857.

By Jim Rueda, Free Press sports editor [published in The Free Press, Mankato, MN, 10/17/2011]

There was no epiphany or any single moment when the light bulb came on for 25-year-old Minnesota State Mankato student Carson Kraft.

Kraft, 25, started bowling at the age of 14 and gradually got better. From 2002 until today, Kraft has improved by an average of about 10 pins every season.

He’s gone from a 160 average 10 years ago to somewhere around the 245 range this year.

That’s why 2 1 ⁄ 2 weeks ago at Jerry Dutler’s Bowl, when Kraft rolled the highest three-game series (857) in the history of Mankato, not too many people were surprised. Even Kraft him­self wasn’t overwhelmed by the moment.

“I’ve bowled six 300 games before so I’ve been in some high-pressure situations,” Kraft said.

Upon graduation from Hutchinson he moved to Mankato and, for awhile, worked at Dutler’s Bowl.

In the last week of September, while bowling in league play for his Pioneer Bank team, the record-set­ting series unfolded. He bowled a 280 in his first game and a 299 in the sec­ond.

Along they way he was able to roll 21 strikes in a row. In about the fifth frame if his third game, Kraft did the math in his head and realized he had a shot at the city record.

Ruth Dutler, the owner of Dutler’s Bowl, said Kraft’s feat is pretty amazing con­sidering he’s only bowling once a week.

For the complete Free Press story, see Monday's print edition, or go to the e-edition at

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