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Beat the Champs: Annie Handy, Keith Charvat highlight Sect. 4/Will Co. sectional

Annie Handy, a 69-year-old retiree from Harvey, rolled 252, 225 and 216 to go with 105 pins of handicap Saturday at Arena Lanes in Oak Lawn. Kevin Tanaka/For the Sun-Times

Annie Handy has priorities.

She cut short her dialysis Saturday morning for a good reason. She wanted to make the 10 a.m. start of the Section 4/Will County sectional of the 58th Beat the Champions at Arena Lanes in Oak Lawn.

“I was there [for dialysis] at 5, did two hours, went home and rested,’’ she said.

Then she came to Arena Lanes and won the women’s side by rolling a 798.

Keith Charvat rolled a scratch 782 to edge Timothy Thomas by one pin on the men’s side.

Handy’s dialysis should not matter when it comes to the women’s finals March 10 at Liberty Lanes in Carpentersville. For the last seven months, she has been doing dialysis Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, normally for three hours.

One of her two sons she taught bowling, Mike, will donate a kidney to her. He was there coaching and commenting Saturday when she missed spares.

Not that Handy, who bowls at Castaways Bowl and Dolton Bowl, needed much help.

“I was just relaxing and letting it go,’’ said Handy, who never bowled at Arena Lanes before. “It was a smooth shot for me.’’

It capped quite the week for the 69-year-old retiree from Harvey, who rolled her first 300 on Thursday. She rolled games of 252, 225 and 216 to go with 105 pins of handicap. In BTC, the charity event by the Chicagoland Bowling Proprietors Association, handicap is 90 percent of the difference a bowler averages under 220.

Charvat, a lane certification manager for USBC from Orland Park, didn’t need any handicap. He rolled consistently strong games of 257, 258 and 267 to become the only scratch bowler to advance.

“I tried four different balls in practice and found the one that gave me the hook,’’ Charvat said. “The others fluttered down the lane.’’

Charvat started bumper bowling as a 6-year-old in 1990 at Arena Lanes, but he hasn’t bowled there since 2006. He looked right at home Saturday.

“I carried,’’ he said. “Anyone can hit the pocket, but it carried today. I was just in the zone.’’

Other men advancing to the finals were Ryan Kortge (who won a bowling ball in his previous trip to the finals), Richard DeWitt, Noah O’Daniel, Scott Panozzo, Wally Burress, Will Muguire, Chuck Panozzo, James Chavers, Russ Stanton III, Robert Scott Jr. and Brian Eggleston.

Joyce Pledger was second on the women’s side with 770. Other women advancing were Kristen McCarthy, Jennifer Gritzenbach, Ashley Jackson (highest averaging advancer on the women’s side with only 37 pins of handicap), Nikita Lawrence, Torie Sutton, Helen White, Charmaine Orr, Rose Willard, Jacque Hennessy, Tekila Spells, Mise Payne and Bridgette Gordon.

In the finals, the top prize for both the men and women is $7,500.

The biggest prize in BTC, of which the Sun-Times is a sponsor, is the $2,872,914.93 raised for charity by 5,789,515 entries in the event’s first 57 years.