Villages resident honored as Florida Senior Games Athlete of the Year  

A Villager has been named a 2017 Florida Senior Games Athlete of the Year.

The announcement was made Thursday by the Florida Sports Foundation.

Carol Teel

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

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