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Bowl-a-thon pins down support for free tutoring
Golden West School bowlers wore custom T-shirts. - photo by HIME ROMERO
They were known as the Alley Cats.

This “Strike Force” bowling foursome consisted of prominent members of the San Joaquin County Office of Education.

Each had code names.

Keith Jackson, an information technology coordinator and Manteca resident, was known as “Shot Gun.”

He was joined by Deputy Superintendent Mick Fontes, who went by “Blocker.” Science Camp Coordinator Randy Gibbs and Director of Special Education Bruce Kern were respectively known as “Flanker” and “Kicker.”

During the 10th Annual Give Every Child A Chance Antone E. Raymus Bowl-A-Thon, the Alley Cats wreaked plenty of havoc at the Manteca Bowl and Family Fun Center.

When they weren’t throwing strikes or trying to pick up spares, the Alley Cats were engaged in a Nerf-gun battle with members of the SJCOE Business Department.

Included were auditor Nicole Lorenz, administrative senior assistant Pam Carson, account clerk Nikki Castellanos, and director Johnny Argelles.

“It all started when we stole their weapons,” confessed Lorenz during the Saturday event benefitting free tutoring services to more than 2,000 struggling students.

According to Linda Donelson, GECAC special projects coordinator, 82 teams took part in this year’s bowling event.

“Of course, we had our share of last-minute entries,” she said.
Each team was limited to five players, with members receiving two games of bowling, T-shirt, rental of shoes and a drink.

“The (GECAC) kids at the afterschool sites did their part by getting pledges,” said Carol Davis, chief executive officer.
Those involved had a chance to win mountain bikes, gift cards, soccer balls, playoff soccer tickets, and recreation hockey sticks.

Incidentally, a member of the Alley Cats came away the winner of $90 from the 50-50 raffle, according to Chuck Crutchfield, GECAC vice president.

The Alley Cats, meanwhile, waged a friendly war with their SJCOE counterparts, with both sides firing an array of harmless Nerf foam ammo at one another, from several feet to point blank.

“The guns belong to my son,” Jackson said. “He was really looking forward to coming but something came up. He was devastated he couldn’t be here.”

No problem. The adults made the most of their play time in between bowling for an event benefiting the children.

Among this year’s sponsors were Marie Raymus, Manteca Bowl and Family Fun Center, Raymus Homes, Albert and Rina Brocchini Family Foundation, Manteca Sunrise Kiwanis, Tenet Healthcare Foundation, and Golden Valley Federal Credit Union.