All the Right Moves

by PBA Editor January 12, 2008 19:00
As the only right-handed bowler in Sunday’s championship round, Wes Malott thought he might have an advantage against his left-handed opponents. Turns out, he was right.
Malott defeated rookie Rhino Page, 255-193, to win the 2008 Lumber Liquidators Earl Anthony Medford Classic at Lava Lanes to capture his third career Denny’s PBA Tour title.

The 31-year-old had finished second in his last three championship rounds and four of the last five, but he finally put it all together, striking in 17 of 22 frames in his two matches. The outcome of the two matches were never really in question, a contrast to his recent losses on TV. In three of his last four title-match losses, his margin of defeat was eight pins or less.

“Once we got to the show I knew the lefties would have to go through a transition,” Malott (Argyle, Texas) said. “In that first semifinal match, neither of them struck from the fifth frame on so I knew it was starting to transition. I still had to bowl well and thankfully I did and brought it home.”

In the title match against Page, who was making history as the first rookie since Mike Durbin in 1967 to make three championship rounds, Malott jumped out to an early lead with strikes in the first four frames. After looking dominant in his first match, a 230-190 win over Patrick Allen, Page never caught up to the transition and failed to string two strikes together after starting the match with a double.

It was another disappointing finish for the 24-year-old phenom, who has finished second twice and fifth in his three championship round appearances. He is still well on his way to the PBA Rookie of the Year award as he sits in the top 10 in the PBA World Point Rankings, all while having to go through the Denny’s PBA Tour Qualifying Rounds each week.

Malott, meanwhile, moved up to third in the PBA Player of the Year race behind Allen and leader Walter Ray Williams Jr. Page moved into seventh on the list.

Malott advanced to the title match with a 245-235 win over Parker Bohn III. Malott started the match with six consecutive strikes and never looked back, striking in the eighth and ninth frames to clinch the match.

In the first semifinal, Page jumped ahead of Allen early with strikes in the first five frames which turned out to be enough as neither bowler struck in the final five frames. Allen, who was making his fourth consecutive championship round appearance, had just three strikes in the match and an open in the fourth frame.

Malott earned $25,000 and an exemption for the 2008-09 season with his win. Page (Topeka, Kan.) earned $13,000 for second while Bohn (Jackson, N.J.) and Allen (Wesley Chapel, Fla.) took home $6,000 each for third and fourth, respectively.

The Denny’s PBA Tour moves to Fountain Valley, Calif., next week for the 2008 Motel 6 Dick Weber Open, Jan. 15-20 at Fountain Bowl. The live ESPN-televised finals take place Sunday, Jan. 20 at 1 p.m. ET.

Denny’s PBA Tour
2008 Lumber Liquidators Earl Anthony Medford Classic
Lava Lanes
Medford, Ore.
Sunday, Jan. 13


Pos.Name, hometownTotal/GamesMoney
1.Wes Malott, Argyle, Texas500 (2 games)$25,000
2.Rhino Page, Topeka, Kan.423 (2 games)$13,000
3.Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J.235 (1 game)$6,000
4.Patrick Allen, Wesley Chapel, Fla.190 (1 game)$6,000

SCORES – In the first match, Page def. Allen, 230-190; in the second match, Malott def. Bohn, 245-235; and in the final, Malott def. Page, 255-193.

This is Malott’s third career Denny’s PBA Tour title.
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USBC Masters Moves to Las Vegas

by PBA Editor January 10, 2008 19:00
By Lucas Wiseman, USBC

One of the sport of bowling's most prestigious events, the United States Bowling Congress Masters, will reunite with the tradition-rich USBC Open Championships next season.

The two events, which were united together from the Masters inception in 1951 until 2001, will be conducted at Cashman Center in Las Vegas in 2009. The Masters is tentatively scheduled to be held Feb. 8-15, 2009, with the Open Championships beginning shortly thereafter.

"These events really complement each other and this move brings back some of the tradition these events have shared in the past," USBC Chief Operating Officer Kevin Dornberger said. "The Masters will be the perfect kickoff to the Open Championships and the unique venue is unmatched in the sport of bowling."

The events will be conducted on 56 specially constructed lanes inside Cashman Center, creating a stadium setting and enhancing the event for spectators as well as competitors.

For the past four years, the Masters has enjoyed a successful run in suburban Milwaukee, with the television finals being held at Miller Park in 2004 and 2007. Although the Masters will not be conducted during the 2008 calendar year, it will remain one of four major events on the Denny's Professional Bowlers Association Tour schedule for the 2008-09 season.

"We are looking forward to repositioning the USBC Masters and are intrigued to see what the change in location and timing will do for attendance, media coverage and TV ratings," PBA Commissioner and CEO Fred Schreyer said. "We have a great partnership with the USBC and while Milwaukee has been an outstanding host for the Masters in recent years, we agreed with the USBC that some changes were needed to maximize the amount of attention this prestigious event will receive."

With the move to February, the Masters television finals will no longer go up against the National Football League, paving the way for an increase in mainstream media exposure and higher television ratings.

"The Masters is now positioned to achieve maximum television ratings and our hope is to expose this great event to an even bigger audience," USBC Vice President of Marketing and Communications Tom Clark said. "The plan is to build the Masters into the pinnacle week in the sport of bowling and this is a move in that direction."

In 1951, the Masters began as an invitational event showcasing national and local bowling stars and has grown to become bowling's most prestigious event. The tournament draws nearly 500 of the best professional and amateur bowlers in the world competing for a prize fund of more than $350,000.

The Open Championships, which was held for the first time in 1901, is the world's largest participatory sporting event. The 2009 event in Las Vegas is scheduled to run at least five months and is expected to draw more than 80,000 bowlers from across the world.

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The Great Right Hope

by PBA Editor January 10, 2008 19:00
The last time Wes Malott made a Denny’s PBA Tour championship round, he and five other right-handers took turns burning up the lanes which allowed left-hander Patrick Allen to breeze to the Lumber Liquidators Championship.

This week, Malott is looking for payback as he will be the only right-handed bowler in Sunday’s finals of the 2008 Lumber Liquidators Earl Anthony Medford Classic at Lava Lanes.

Malott defeated two left-handers early in the day Friday then knocked off defending champion Sean Rash, four-games-to-none, in the Round of 8 to advance to his third championship round of the season. He’ll look to win his first title of the season and the third of his career.

“I bowled two lefties this morning so I knew the lanes would break down differently,” Malott (Argyle, Texas) said of his match against Rash. “I was fortunate I got it done in four games because if it had gone on longer, it could’ve been interesting.”

Malott will face PBA Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III in the semifinals Sunday. Bohn captured his 31st career Denny’s PBA Tour title three events ago to break a career-worst 61-event winless streak.

“Things could go in my favor Sunday with all the lefties because they’re going to have a lot more transition on their side of the lane than I will,” Malott said. “They have to go through what I went through in Baltimore when there were eight bowlers and six of us were right handed and we beat up the right side pretty good. That day (Allen) got to play pretty much where he wanted to. I still have to bowl well, but maybe this week is payback.”

Malott will look for a change of fortune as he has finished second in both his TV appearances this season. In fact, Malott has finished second in four of his five TV appearances since winning his last title.

The other semifinal will feature a mentor-prodigy match-up between 10-time titlist Patrick Allen – the hottest bowler on Tour – and rookie Rhino Page. The non-exempt Page has had a historic season, advancing through the Denny’s PBA Tour Qualifying Round seven times in nine tries and making three championship rounds, something no qualifier has ever done twice. Allen, meanwhile, is making his fourth consecutive TV appearance, a first in his career.

Page had an exciting finish in his Round of 8 match, defeating Mike Mineman, 4-2, and winning the sixth game in a roll-off after the two tied at 225. Mineman could have struck out in the 10th frame to win by one pin and force a game seven, but he got nine on his fill ball giving Page a chance to strike out for the tie. Page did just that, then started the one-ball sudden death roll-off with a strike. Mineman matched him, forcing a second roll-off, but Page struck again and Mineman got just nine, giving Page the 20-19 win.

Allen advanced with a 4-1 win over Brad Angelo.

The live ESPN-televised finals take place Sunday at 10 a.m. PST at Lava Lanes. The winner will take home $25,000 and an exemption for the 2008-09 season.
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by PBA Editor January 10, 2008 19:00
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Not So Deep Thoughts

by Randy Peterson January 9, 2008 19:00
By Randy Pedersen

Happy New Year, everyone. I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday and I wish the most prosperous New Year to you all.

We had a great Christmas… well, at least the kids did and isn’t it all about the kids? Yes it is. And I’m the biggest kid on the planet, that’s why I can’t stop playing the Nintendo Wii my kids got. We’ve played bowling and baseball and then the kids opened the Guitar Hero III. OH MY GOD!!!!!! Let me just say that growing up, I was the biggest air guitar freak on the planet. Well, not anymore. Not when I can play Guitar Heroooooooo! Let me just say that I can flat out JAM!!!.

My kids get mad when I hog the game but so what! I’m a rock star. What a great game. I got some nice gifts as well. Lots of golf stuff. I also got some new equipment from Storm. Since I’m going to be bowling the Tournament of Champions, I figured I better start practicing. I don’t want to embarrass myself. I do enough of that on Sundays.

Now let’s segue to a new movie I saw on Sunday entitled, “Carolina Jones and the Temple of Pin Carry”. I know Tommy Jones has struggled this season. He says his pin carry has been crappy but not on Sunday it wasn’t! My God. I remember him doing this last season at the Tournament of Champions. That’s what power, speed and a boat-load of talent will do for ya. Congrats Mr. Jones. We all love watching you bowl on TV.

Until next week bowling fans, stay safe, and I’m out of here.

Read more "Not So Deep Thoughts" by Randy Pedersen:

Dydo Japan Cup

USBC Masters

Motor City Classic

Etonic Championship

Lake County Indiana Classic

Great Lakes Classic

Lumber Liquidators Championship

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