There is something about bowling which captivates Tate Reding.
When he slips on those shoes, steps on the lane and lines up his shot, it’s a motion he’s done countless times — easily into the thousands, perhaps even bordering on millions.
It comes born out of routine and rhythm with a touch of accuracy. Power and strength need to be harnessed at the right level, depending on the roll before.
In a football-mad state like Texas, Reding is all about contact but it comes not from a linebacker colliding with a ball carrier but when a bowling ball travels 60 feet and crashes into 10 pins, over and over again.
Reding is a third-generation bowling standout competing at the highest level across the country, often right alongside his dad, Elwood.
“First my grandfather, then my dad, and now me. The local bowlers are family to me and I get to bowl with my father,” Reding said. “I have been bowling in leagues in Sherman, Durant, and Plano since I was six years old and kind of took to it naturally.”
And since he has been doing it for so long, Reding has become accomplished in the sport. And that leads to what he loves about it.
“The competition,” he said. “And getting to bowl with my dad and all of the other bowlers that have got to watch me grow up bowling.”
Because Reding is involved with several leagues, his practice approach isn’t taxing — it is more about honing his craft.
“Usually once or twice per week,” Reding said. “I just try to get more consistent and work on my spare game.”
Bowling is not a sport sponsored by the University Interscholastic League, although there have been attempts going back decades from supporters across the state trying to get the UIL to add it to its list of competition — water polo was the most recent addition in October, but even that was the first time a sport has been included since wrestling was incorporated for the 1998-99 academic year.
This past June, Reding competed in his first United States Bowling Congress National Tournament with his dad, who has 25 perfect games to his credit, in Las Vegas and was slated to compete in the 2020 event next month before it was called off because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
“It was fun at the National Tournament. It was tough competition but a great learning experience for me,” Reding said. “I didn’t like that the tournament in Reno was essentially cancelled this year. I was really looking forward to getting to bowl again and also going to Reno/Lake Tahoe for the first time. I am already looking forward to bowling in the 2021 tournament in Las Vegas.”
It should be no surprise that Reding’s after-school job is at Schulman’s Movie Bowl Grille and he is waiting for when he can return since the start of the coronavirus pandemic forced its closure.
The area was void of a bowling alley for more than five years when an ice storm collapsed the roof at Lonestar Lanes in Sherman, the lone remaining Texoma alley, in early December 2013 until the opening of Schulman’s last May to go with the recent opening of HeyDay in Denison.
Reding hopes that will bring more to the game since there are now multiple local opportunities for those to get involved with the game he grew up with.
“I think those venues opening will bring more bowling in,” he said. “It also helps to gather our local bowlers together after losing the centers in Sherman and Denison a few years ago. I have also worked in the bowling center at Schulman’s since its opening so I am able to be around the sport and bowlers.”
The family legacy on the lanes started with his grandparents, David and Myranette Reding, who began bowling in the 60s. They would plunk down 19 cents per game and they were hooked on the sport with their main base being the Hilltop Lanes in Greenville.
In 1964, Elwood was born one day after their league bowling night and it wasn’t long before he was competing in leagues — starting at six years old — and the love of the game was being passed down. He has been participating in up to four leagues since then and passed on his passion as a certified bowling coach during his time at Tarleton State University.
Both of the elder Redings — David passed away in November — have been inducted onto the Grayson County/Red River Bowling Associations and for nearly three decades had been competing around the country at the national level in the USBC Open championships.