Bowling big part of couple’s life together

Friday, June 8, 2007 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 2:32 a.m. CDT, Monday, July 7, 2008

Most couples enjoy doing things together, but this husband and wife takes the concept to another level.

Greg and Jo Ann,56, Schlafer love to compete in bowling leagues together. The couple admits that their competitive natures have led to many arguments.

“We’re so competitive it took a while to realize that it didn’t make any difference to anyone else,” Greg Schlafer, 55, said, “It kills us to do poorly.”

The high school sweethearts from Berger hold the 2005 Senior Games mixed doubles record with a score of 1222. This year, they will be competing in an older age group and are looking forward to setting a new record in the same event.

The couple enjoys bowling in couples leagues throughout the year, but they don’t only enjoy bowling against other couples.

“I like the couples leagues because the women compete against the men,” Jo Ann Schlafer, 56, said.

Greg Schlafer added, “She became better than most of the men we bowl with.”

Between the two of them, the Schlafers have bowled four perfect ‘300’ games.

“You don’t sleep the night after you do that,” Jo Ann Schlafer said.

They have the highest season averages from the 2006-2007 season coming into the Senior Games this weekend. Greg Schlafer has a league average of 220, while Jo Ann Schlafer has a league average of 212.

The couple has qualified for the past 4 years for senior nationals, but surprisingly they chose not to take part. The Schlafers said the timing of the games and their work schedules prevent them from competing. But after Greg Schlafer retires, they look forward to “expanding their horizons.”

They said they like to compete in the Senior Games, however they really would like more people to participate.

“I wish more people would take an opportunity to do this,” Jo Ann Schlafer said.

As the couple continues to participate in competitive leagues, retired bowling balls worn from years of use will continue to decorate their backyard flowerbed.

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