Girl, 9, youngest in US to bowl 300

Bowling organization has certified game

LARGO, Fla. - Hannah Diem, 9, said it was a bowling party in kindergarten that got her hooked on the sport.

"Once I picked up that bowling ball and threw it down the lane, I knew it was my sport," she said.

Recently, Hannah was bowling on her regular league night, and after the second game, came and sat next to her mom, Heidi, and asked her how old might she be when she bowls her first 300 game.

Heidi said the question was, "Out of the blue."

Little did they know, the moment was upon them.

"After about seven strikes, I knew it was a possibility, because seven was my highest amount of strikes ever," Hannah said.

As the strikes mounted, so did the nerves.

"My mom says she doesn't know how I held it together," Hannah said.

Mom kept her distance, but she said she knew her daughter was nervous.

"I could see her physically shaking," Heidi said.

"I knew it's only three more balls, a measly three. That's what an average person would say, 'Just three balls.'  Not just three balls if you're going for that 300," Hannah said.

By that time, almost everybody at Liberty Lanes in Largo had stopped to watch the 9-year-old.

"There was a large crowd around me, and you could here a pin drop when I got up," Hannah said.

And then, the final strike. "When I threw that last strike, I threw my hands up. I ran back to (my mom) and she was sobbing on my shoulder," Hannah said.

"People were cheering and clapping. It was just absolutely magical," Heidi added.

Hannah now holds the record as the youngest person to bowl a 300 in the United States. The United States Bowling Congress has certified the game and sent Hannah a congratulatory letter.

"I still feel like I'm dreaming.  It's like, pinch me," Hannah said.

 

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