LAS VEGAS – PBA Hall of Famers Amleto Monacelli of Venezuela and Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Florida, advanced to the finals of the PBA Challenge, a made-for-ESPN special event, as the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling VI got underway Friday at South Point Bowling Center.
Monacelli and Williams finished one-two in an eight-game match play qualifying event for the 2014 season’s top PBA50 Tour players, earning berths in the November 2 PBA Challenge television finals. Also advancing to the PBA Challenge from the PBA Regional qualifier were Josh Blanchard of Gilbert, Arizona, representing the PBA’s West Region, and EJ Tackett of Huntington, Indiana, representing the PBA Central Region. The PBA Women’s Regional finalists will be Colombia native Clara Guerrero of Pflugerville, Texas, representing the PBA Southwest Region, and Missy Parkin of Laguna Hills, California, who won the PBA West Region berth in the qualifying event.
The PBA Challenge will include four one-game matches, with the four winners than competing in a unique Knock-Out Round finale on Sunday, Nov. 2, at the South Point Bowling Plaza. The ESPN telecast will air on Sunday, Jan. 19. The fourth match in the PBA Challenge telecast will be a contest between 2014 Teen Masters boys’ division champion Coffey of Melbourne, Florida, bowling girls’ division winner Kelly Skalacki of Coram, New York. The Teen Masters Grand Champion will receive a $6,500 scholarship.
Monacelli won the PBA50 berth by winning all eight of his head-to-head matches, but Williams surged from third place to second behind a 287 final game, knocking fellow hall of famer Pete Weber of St. Ann, Missouri, out of the finals by 20 pins.
Blanchard also was dominant in the PBA Regional qualifier, winning seven of his eight matches to beat Tackett by 106 pins. Tackett finished 53 pins ahead of Midwest Region representative Tom Hess of Urbandale, Iowa.
In the Women’s Regional event, Guerrero advanced from third to first with a victory over East Region representative Kristina Wendell of Poughkeepsie, New York, in her final match while Parkin held on tow second with a spare in the 10th frame, dropping Amanda Greene of Romney, West Virginia, to third place by 45 pins.
PBA Tour competition in the World Series officially gets underway Saturday with qualifying rounds of the Cheetah Championship presented by PBA Challenge Mobile Game, the first of four PBA Tour animal pattern lane condition championship events that are part of the World Series. Animal pattern qualifying rounds continue with the Viper Championship on Sunday, the Chameleon Championship on Monday and the Scorpion Championship on Tuesday. Each animal pattern event features a distinctly different scoring environment and each will advance four players to the championship rounds which will be contested on Saturday, Nov. 1, at the South Point Bowling Plaza for airing on ESPN beginning Sunday, Dec. 14.
The animal pattern events also will serve as the qualifying event for PBA World Championship. The top 24 players after 28 combined games on the four animal patterns will advance to match play competition Wednesday and Thursday. A total of 52 games of qualifying and match play will produce the five finalists who will return to South Point for the live ESPN finals of the PBA World Championship on Jan. 11.
All qualifying and match play rounds of the animal pattern events and PBA World Championship will be covered live on Xtra Frame. For subscription information, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame Season Ticket link.
PBA CHALLENGE MATCH PLAY QUALIFYING EVENTS
South Point Bowling Center, Las Vegas, Friday
PBA50 Tour Finals (after 8 games, including match play bonus pins; top two advance to PBA Challenge Finals on Nov. 2 at South Point Bowling Plaza): 1, Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 8-0, 2,048. 2, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Oxford, Fla., 4-4, 1,929. 3, Pete Weber, St. Ann, Mo., 4-4, 1,909, $1,000. 4, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 4-4, 1,810, $700. 5, Tom Baker, King, N.C., 2-6, 1,801, $600. 6, Harry Sullins, Chesterfield Twp., Mich., 3-5, 1,786, $500. 7, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 4-4, 1,747, $400. 8, Mike Edwards, Tulsa, Okla., 3-5, 1,666, $300.
PBA Regional Finals (after 8 games, including match play bonus pins; top two advance to PBA Challenge Finals on Nov. 2 at South Point Bowling Plaza): 1, Josh Blanchard, Gilbert, Ariz., 7-1, 2,043. 2, E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 5-3, 1,937. 3, Tom Hess, Urbandale, Iowa, 5-3, 1,884, $1,000. 4, David Haynes, Las Vegas, 4-4, 1,824, $700. 5, Shawn Maldonado, Houston, Texas, 2-6, 1,810, $600. 6, Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 3-5, 1,795, $500. 7, Connor Pickford, Charlotte, N.C., 5-3, 1,775, $400. 8, Pat Nolan, Japan, 1-7-0, 1,553, $300.
PBA Women’s Regional Finals (after 8 games, including match play bonus pins; top two advance to PBA Challenge Finals on Nov. 2 at South Point Bowling Plaza): 1, Clara Guerrero, Colombia, 5-3, 1,857. 2, Missy Parkin, Lake Forest, Calif., 6-2, 1,844. 3, Amanda Greene, Romney, W.Va., 4-4, 1,799, $1,000. 4, Kristina Wendell, Poughkeepsie, N.Y., 4-4, 1,751, $700. 5, Lindsay Boomershine, Brigham City, Utah, 4-4, 1,717, $550. 5, Liz Johnson, Cheektowaga, New York, 3-5, 1,717, $550. 7, Yuka Tsuchiya, Japan, 4-4, 1,683, $400. 8, Christina Hardee, Mount Dora, Fla., 2-6, 1,583, $300.