A Villager has been named a 2017 Florida Senior Games Athlete of the Year.
The announcement was made Thursday by the Florida Sports Foundation.
Villager Carol Teel is the female athlete of the year, while Mike Welter, of Cape Coral, was the male athlete of the year.
Teel spent the first weekend of the 2017 Florida Senior Games at Seminole Lanes bowling in women’s doubles and mixed doubles.
At the 2017 bowling competition, Teel was part of a record-setting women’s doubles team that rolled an all-time best score with a 1392 for a new record in the 60-64 age group, along with Cristy Morawski, of Milton. She also teamed with her husband, Gerald, to win a mixed doubles gold medal in the 60-64 age group.
Teel won medals in all three events at the 2017 National Senior Games and was part of record-setting teams in the 60-64 Women’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles competitions. She won a women’s singles silver medal and took gold in the women’s doubles, teaming with Morawski, for a new age group record combined score of 1336. She teamed with Gerald again at the national level to establish a new age group mixed doubles record with a combined score of 1318.
“In the 12 years I’ve been doing what I’ve been doing at the Florida Senior Games, she’s probably the best women’s bowler I’ve seen,” said Bob Peters, the FSG Bowling Sport Director. “If she’s not, she’s giving a big push to whoever may be. She’s very talented and keeps winning gold medals as she has progressed into different age groups. That’s not always easy.”
She holds four FSG records, two in women’s singles (55-59 and 60-64 age group), one in women’s doubles (60-64 age group), and one in mixed doubles (55-59 age group). She is the only FSG women’s bowler to roll a 300 game, a feat she accomplished in 2012 in women’s singles competition.
Welter and Teel are the 47th and 48th Athletes of the Year chosen in the 26 years of the Florida Senior Games. Welter is the first Pickleball athlete to win the FSG Athlete of the Year award and Teel is the second bowler to earn the honor. Richard Merrill, a bowler from Lady Lake, won the 2010 Athlete of the Year Award. Teel and Merrill are two of only five bowlers in history of the Games to roll a perfect game.
Past Florida Senior Games Athletes of the Year
2016: Kathy Petrillo, Jupiter; John Horwath, The Villages
2015: Janet Brown, Lakeland; Rudy Vazmina, Sarasota
2014: Danuta Kubelik, Crystal River; Walt Deal, St. Petersburg
2013: Nina Hammer, Bonita Springs; Tom Bliss, Melbourne
2012: Linda Frisch, The Villages; James Richling, Port St. Lucie
2011: Essie Faria, North Miami; Segismundo Pares, Ocala
2010: Avis Vaught, The Villages; Richard Merrill, Lady Lake
2009: Patrice Hirr, The Villages; John Shultz, Inverness
2008: Suzy Nothhouse, Estero; Dean Davis, Fort Myers
2007: Claudette Braswell, Lake Wales; Larry Wallen, Jacksonville
2006: Sari Kisbany, Redington Shores; Roger Gentilhomme, Dunedin
2005: Patricia Sargeant, Melbourne; Andy McGuffin, Umatilla
2004: Lillian Webb, Sebring; Harry Carothers, Pinellas Park
2003: Madelaine “Tiny” Cazel, The Villages; James Anderson, New Port Richey
2002: Janice Lathouwers, The Villages; Allen Bjork, Sebring
2001: Sperry Rademaker, Floral City; Howard Hall, Port Charlotte
2000: Erika Messner, Clermont; Al Treichel, Spring Hill
1999: Patricia Bond, Bradenton; Gordon Johnson, Dundee
1998: Lucia Schatteleyn, Englewood; Donald Ritenour, Belleview
1997: Ethel Lehmann, Largo; Seymour Duckman, Daytona Beach
1996: Hope Fage, Largo; F.L. McFadden, Lakeland
1995: Mary Melehan, Englewood; Leonard Stone, Barefoot Bay
1994: Doris Prokopi, Land O’Lakes; Wayne Wakefield, Bradenton