Belmonte Tries for Third Consecutive USBC Masters Crown; Catch Qualifying and Match Play Action on Xtra Frame

by Jerry Schneider January 31, 2015 04:05

By Lucas Wiseman, USBC Communications

Last year, Jason Belmonte of Australia accomplished something that hadn't been done in nearly 50 years. Next week, he will attempt to accomplish something no bowler has done in the 64-year history of the United States Bowling Congress Masters.

The two-time reigning PBA Player of the Year made history last year by becoming just the third player to win the USBC Masters in back-to-back years. No bowler has ever won the event three consecutive years.

The two-handed star will again be the player to beat when the 2015 USBC Masters kicks off with the first round of qualifying Tuesday, Feb. 4, at The Ashwaubenon Bowling Alley in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The event will feature a sold-out field of 336 of the top professional and non-professional bowlers in the world.

All qualifying and match play rounds of the Masters will be covered live on Xtra Frame, the PBA's online bowling channel. For subscription information, click on http://www.xtraframe.tv/pba/

In 2014 Belmonte climbed the stepladder from the fourth position, eventually defeating top seed EJ Tackett of Huntington, Ind. 221-177, to win the 2014 Masters. While no player has won the Masters three consecutive years, Belmonte will look to join USBC and PBA Hall of Famer Mike Aulby as just the second three-time champion. Aulby won the event in 1989, 1995 and 1998.

"I think my chances this year are no different than any other year," said Belmonte, who was named Player of the Year for the second consecutive year last Monday. "I must remain patient, make the best shots I can every frame and then get a little lucky along the way. If that happens, I will have a great opportunity to win again."

As the reigning champion, Belmonte is guaranteed a spot in the 64-player double-elimination match-play bracket. He will bowl qualifying to try to earn the highest seeding position possible.

All players will bowl 15 games of qualifying over three days to determine the match-play field. The top 63 players will join Belmonte in the unique three-game, double-elimination bracket.

"I think the keys for me in the matches are patience, capitalizing on openings and a little luck," Belmonte said. "I don't try to win the match in the first game. I wait for the opening, and then I've really jumped on my opponents when they have made an error in the match. I have also been great at adding pressure to my opponents as the match unfolds."

The top five players at the conclusion of the bracket will advance to the stepladder finals and compete in the live two-hour championship round on ESPN on Sunday, Feb. 8, at 1 p.m. ET.

The Masters, which features a first-place prize of $50,000 and a total prize fund of $253,000, is the first major of the 2015 PBA Tour season and is part of the World Bowling Tour for the fourth consecutive season.

2015 USBC MASTERS
At The Ashwaubenon Bowling Alley, Green Bay, Wisconsin

SCHEDULE
(All times Central)

Monday, Feb. 2
10:30-11:30 a.m. - Practice session (Squad A; and Squad B players with last names A-L)
12:30-1:30 p.m. - Practice session (Squad B players with last names M-Z; and Squad C)

Tuesday, Feb. 3
8 a.m. - Round 1, 5 qualifying games (Squad A)
Noon - Round 1, 5 qualifying games (Squad B)
5 p.m. - Round 1, 5 qualifying games (Squad C)

Wednesday, Feb. 4
8 a.m. - Round 2, 5 qualifying games (Squad B)
Noon - Round 2, 5 qualifying games (Squad C)
5 p.m. - Round 2, 5 qualifying games (Squad A)

Thursday, Feb. 5
8 a.m. - Round 3, 5 qualifying games (Squad C)
Noon - Round 3, 5 qualifying games (Squad A)
5 p.m. - Round 3, 5 qualifying games (Squad B)
  (Top 63 players and defending champion Jason Belmonte advance to three-game, double-elimination match-play bracket)

Friday, Feb. 6
9 a.m. - Double-elimination match play, three games total pinfall (five rounds)

Saturday, Feb. 7
9 a.m. - Double-elimination match play, three games total pinfall (two rounds)
3:15 p.m. - Winners bracket final match (two surviving undefeated players, three games to determine No. 1 and No. 2 seeds for ESPN stepladder finals)
7 p.m. - Three-game match, final four losers bracket survivors (top three players advance to ESPN stepladder finals as No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5 seeds based upon pinfall totals)

Sunday, Feb. 8
Noon - Five players, ESPN stepladder finals (live)

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PBA Spare Shots: Vote for the Greatest PBA Tournament of Champions TV Moment in History

by Bill Vint January 30, 2015 08:28

What was the greatest moment in PBA Tournament of Champions television history? In celebration of the 50th anniversary tournament which gets underway on Tuesday, Feb. 11, at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis, you are invited to vote on your favorite, starting Sunday, by clicking on the special “TOC Poll” link at the top of the pba.com home page.

Fans can vote until Monday, Feb. 9. The top three moments, based on fan voting, will be aired as part of the live ESPN telecast of the TOC finals on Sunday, Feb. 15, at 1 p.m. ET.

Below is a list of 12 of the Tournament of Champions’ most historic moments, listed in order of when they happened. Go to the online poll to cast your vote, or visit PBA on Facebook or Twitter if you have another special moment you think the PBA’s panel of experts missed.

1967 - Jack Biondolillo shoots the first TV 300 game in PBA history.
1970 - Don Johnson shoots 299 in the title match.
1971 - Johnny Petraglia makes four straight TV shows and wins three straight titles, culminating with the T of C.
1984 - Mike Durbin becomes the first player to win three T of C titles (1972, 1982 & 1984).
1986 - Marshall Holman wins 2nd T of C and surpasses $1 million in career earnings (3rd player to do so).
1991 - A bomb scare temporarily halts the telecast; David Ozio eventually wins the title.
1993 - George Branham wins the last Firestone T of C and becomes first African-American to win the event.
1995 - Mike Aulby wins to complete Bowling’s Triple Crown and Grand Slam.
2002 - Jason Couch wins his third straight T of C title to become the only “three-peat” winner in the event.
2010 - Kelly Kulick becomes the first female to win a PBA Tour title.
2011 - Mika Koivuniemi shoots 299 vs. Tom Daugherty’s 100 in the semifinal match, then wins the event and a PBA record $250,000 first prize.
2013 - Pete Weber becomes the oldest player to win the event at age 50 (his second T of C win).

ESPN NIXES KNICKS IN FAVOR OF PBA’S CP3 CELEBRITY INVITATIONAL

The traditional Super Bowl Sunday telecast of Chris Paul’s CP3 PBA Celebrity Invitational got a boost into an even better time slot on ESPN (Sunday at 2 p.m. ET) and an extension from a 90-minute show to two hours thanks to a struggling New York Knicks team.

As New York Post reporter Marc Berman wrote: “The Knicks’ scheduled nationally televised games are falling like bowling pins. A matinee clash with the (Los Angeles) Lakers on Super Bowl Sunday on ESPN was pulled by the network — not for another NBA showdown — but for a celebrity bowling event, an NBA source told The Post.

“The Chris Paul-hosted celebrity bowling event has been deemed more appetizing than the bumbling Lakers (12-31) visiting the bumbling Knicks (7-36) in Derek Fisher’s first game as coach against his former club.”

Speaking of Sunday’s Chris Paul PBA event, here’s a link to a special preview of the CP3 show: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzLOllkGA9U

TACKETT WINS “SELFIE CHALLENGE;” FLAVOR FLAV MAKES GUEST APPEARANCE

Thirteen-year-old Ryan Knippel was mildly surprised he was going to bowl against 2013 PBA Rookie of the Year EJ Tackett of Huntington, Ind., in the final one-shot High 5 Gear “Selfie Challenge” of GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling VI, but he was even more surprised when hip-hop artist Flavor Flav joined the fun.

Tackett set the bar high with a strike on his shot. Knippel managed only a three-count. And Flav, who frequently dropped by to watch the action at South Point Bowling Center during the week, rolled a shot straight down the middle to knock down eight pins. Knippel received an autographed ball from Tackett for participating in the challenge, which took place during the World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s Finals presented by the PBA.

PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: BOHN, ALLEN WIN CENTRAL OVER/UNDER DOUBLES EVENT

PBA Hall of Famer and PBA50 Tour competitor Parker Bohn III of Jackson, N.J. and partner Patrick Allen of Wesley Chapel, Fla., defeated the Ohio duo of Mike Henry of Brunswick and Patrick Dombrowski of Parma, 2-0, in a best-of-three-game match to win the PBA Don Vay Memorial Regular/Senior Doubles Central Classic presented by Ebonite at Legend Lanes in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, Sunday.

The first PBA Regional tournament of the 2015 season featured teams of one bowler age 50 or older, and one bowler under the age of 50. The title was Bohn’s and Allen’s first of the year in the PBA Central Region. It also was Bohn’s 22nd career PBA Regional title and Allen’s 24th. They split a $4,000 first prize.

In the semifinal round, Bohn and Allen blanked Dale Csuhta of Wadsworth, Ohio, and Dave Wodka, newly located in Columbus, Ohio, 2-0, while Henry and Dombrowski swept Jim Pencak of Parma, Ohio and Brandon Tarabek of Cleveland, 2-0, to set up the championship match.

● The Feb. 6-8 weekend includes the Break Point Alley South Challenge presented by DV8, a tournament for non-title winners, in Tavares, Fla., and the PBA50 Tony Grigat Allstate Midwest/Central Open at River Rand Lanes in Des Plaines, Ill.

● The Feb. 20-22 weekend includes the PBA50 Dave Edwards Toyota South Open presented by Ebonite in Spartanburg, S.C.; the Lakewood Colorado Southwest Open at Holiday Bowling and Billiards; the Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort West Championship at Gold Country Lanes in Sutter Creek, Calif., and the Lynwood Midwest Challenge presented by Roto Grip, a non-titlists event, at Lynwood Bowl in Lynwood, Ill.

For complete PBA Regional schedules, rules and entry information, visit pba.com, open the “schedules” tab and click on Regional Tours to find the event(s) in your area.

QUICK NOTES

● For the latest in PBA-logoed merchandise, visit the PBA Tour Store on pba.com: https://www.kotisdesign.com/estore/landing.asp?estore=pbastore

● Reminder: Tickets for the live ESPN telecast of the 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions, and the finals of the PBA Players Championship and Mark Roth/Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, over the Feb. 14-15 Valentine’s Day weekend at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis are now on sale on pba.com. For ticket information, click here: http://www.pba.com/Tickets/.

● Reminder: if you missed Sunday’s ESPN telecast of the World Bowling Tour Finals presented by the PBA, all GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling VI telecasts are archived on Xtra Frame three days after they air on ESPN. Click on the “2014 WSOB archives” tab on the left side of the Xtra Frame home page for a complete listing of archived shows.

● Reminder: HotelPlanner.com, the official travel partner of the PBA, has renewed its sweepstakes program for 2015 and will award a $200 lodging gift certificate to a lucky winner each month all year. To enter, book a hotel room through HotelPlanner.com using one of the links below before the last day of the month, and you will be automatically entered. The monthly drawing will take place on the last day of the month. The $200 gift certificate will be valid for hotel room and tax only.

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Duke, Malott Qualify No. 1 in Defense of Mark Roth-Marshall PBA Doubles Championship Title

by Bill Vint January 30, 2015 04:43

WAUWATOSA, Wis. – Professional Bowlers Association Hall of Famer Norm Duke of Clermont, Fla., and partner Wes Malott of Pflugerville, Texas, will try to repeat as Mark Roth/Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship winners after racing away to the No. 1 qualifying position for the stepladder finals on Feb. 15 in Indianapolis.

Duke, who stands 5-foot-6, and Malott, his 6-foot-4 partner, dominated Friday’s match play rounds at AMF Bowlero, averaging a combined 238.44 for 48 games of qualifying and match play to finish with 11,835 pins. The 2011 Roth/Holman doubles champions – the last time the event was held – finished 343 pins ahead of Dino Castillo of Carrollton, Texas, and his partner, Tom Daugherty of Wesley Chapel, Fla.

Also qualifying for the Baker format stepladder finals which will be held at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis on Sunday, Feb. 15, are Australia’s Jason Belmonte and Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa.; No. 4 D.J. Archer of Friendswood, Texas, and Shawn Maldonado of Houston, Texas, and No. 5 Dom Barrett of England and Osku Palermaa of Finland.

Throughout the doubles event, Duke was the dominant player, playing a straight down the outside of the lane while most of the field – including Malott – played a big hook, inside-angle power game. Among the field of finalists, three are high-rev two-handed players – Belmonte, Maldonado and Palermaa – and Daugherty gets his power with a “thumbless” release.

The finalists also include two players trying for their first PBA Tour title (Castillo and Maldonado), and two one-time winners (Daugherty and Archer).

“We’re so different, but we just go about our business, and enjoy bowling with each other,” Duke said. “I have so much respect for Wes. I wanted to do well just because of that.”

“What made it work for us is that Norm bowled his butt off and I kinda went along for the ride,” Malott, a nine-time PBA Tour titlist, said. “I know he hasn’t necessarily bowled great the past couple of years, but I have a lot of faith in him and he certainly showed why this week. To have a chance to defend our title is an honor.”

Duke, a 37-time PBA Tour champion, will head to Indianapolis as a finalist in the PBA Players Championship as well as the doubles event. He will have two chances to break his tie for third place on the PBA all-time titles list with fellow hall of famer Pete Weber of St. Ann, Mo. Duke and Weber trail all-time titles leader Walter Ray Williams Jr. (47) and the late Earl Anthony (43).

Neither Duke nor Malott is concerned about the two-week interval between Friday’s match play and the Feb. 15 finals, which will be contested at Woodland Bowl at 7 p.m. ET, following the live ESPN finals of the 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions at 1 p.m. ET.

“Milwaukee has been good to me. I’ve made a lot of TV shows here, but I haven’t won that many times,” Duke said. “It would be nice to stay here, but if we have to go somewhere for the finals, I’d go to Indy. I’ve closed the deal a few times down there.”

Malott felt the same way.

“With all of the bowling we’re going to be doing the next couple of weeks, having a little time before the finals is a good thing,” Malott said, “and I think I’ll be able to strike a little more in Indy.”

The Roth/Holman PBA Doubles Championship will air on ESPN on March 1 at 1 p.m. ET.

PBA Tour players headed north to Green Bay where they will compete in the United States Bowling Congress Masters Tuesday through Sunday, Feb. 8. The Masters finals will air live on ESPN at 3 p.m. ET. All qualifying and match play rounds of the Masters will be covered live on PBA’s Xtra Frame online bowling channel (visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link for subscription information).

The 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions follows, Feb. 11-15, at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis. The PBA Hall of Fame induction ceremonies will kick off the week on Feb. 10. All qualifying and match play rounds of the Tournament of Champions also will be covered live on Xtra Frame.

MARK ROTH/MARSHALL HOLMAN PBA DOUBLES CHAMPIONSHIP
AMF Bowlero, Wauwatosa, Wis., Jan. 30

FINAL MATCH PLAY STANDINGS (after 48 combined games, includes combined individual and team match play records and bonus pins)
1, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla./Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 23-13, 11,835.
2, Dino Castillo, Carrollton, Texas/Tom Daugherty, Tampa, Fla., 24-12, 11,492.
3, Jason Belmonte, Australia/Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 16-20, 11,481.
4, DJ Archer, Friendswood, Texas/Shawn Maldonado, Houston, Texas, 21-15, 11,431.
5, Dom Barrett, England/Osku Palermaa, Finland, 21-14-1, 11,396.
6, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas/Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 21-15, 11,372, $6,000.
7, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind./Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 17-19, 11,334, $5,000.
8, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Oxford, Fla./Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 12-24, 11,319, $4,500.
9, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C./Jake Peters, Henderson, Nev., 19-17, 11,261, $4,000.
10, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y./Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 13-23, 11,228, $3,500.
11, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y./Brian Himmler, Cincinnati, 15-20-1, 11,157, $3,000.
12, Anthony Pepe, Elmhurst, N.Y./Rhino Page, Dade City, Fla., 13-23, 11,007, $2,500.

300 Games: none

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Torrid Final Round Propels Parker Bohn III into No. 1 Berth for PBA Players Championship Stepladder Finals

by Bill Vint January 29, 2015 10:14

WAUWATOSA, Wis. – Professional Bowlers Association Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III of Jackson, N.J., won seven of his eight matches and tied the other Thursday afternoon at AMF Bowlero to complete a rally from 69th place after round one to claim the top berth for the PBA Players Championship stepladder finals.

Bohn, a 33-time PBA Tour champion, threw games of 248, 287, 266, 258, 247, 279, 238 and 270 during the final round of match play to finish the Players Championship with a 36-game total of 9,222 pins, claiming the lead for the first time when he defeated Ronnie Russell of Marion, Ind., 270-220, in the final position round game. Russell, who had led most of the day, finished second with 9,170 pins.

Also advancing to the stepladder finals, which will be contested on Saturday, Feb. 14, at 7 p.m. ET at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis as part of the PBA’s 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions week, were two-time reigning PBA Player of the Year Jason Belmonte of Australia; 37-time PBA Tour winner Norm Duke of Clermont, Fla., and Tom Daugherty of Wesley Chapel, Fla.

The finals will air on ESPN on Sunday, Feb. 22, at 1 p.m. ET.

“Tonight was one of those nights when I put it into cruise control and just let things happen,” the 51-year-old Bohn said. “After the first eight games, I went to dinner with Ryan Ciminelli, my doubles partner, and we just decided we had to try something different. We were just trying to figure out how we could make the doubles field. We were so far out of it, we had no plans to make singles.”

During the 12 qualifying games, bowlers also were competing concurrently for the top 12 spots in the Mark Roth/Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, which moves into its match play finals Friday. Bohn and Ciminelli made the cut in ninth place, but a huge final four games by Bohn moved him up from 69th to 23rd place for the singles match play finals, and he just kept going.

”After every block you bowl, you have to analyze what’s going on, and try to figure out where things are going to happen in the future,” Bohn said. “If your guesses are correct, you stand to be one step ahead of everyone else.

“Today, I was an escalator ahead of everyone,” he added. “Everything worked out. In my match against Belmonte, he threw a 279, which would normally win, and I struck out to tie. Go figure.”

Having to wait until Valentine’s Day for the stepladder finals in Indianapolis doesn’t bother Bohn a bit.

“It’s okay that I have to wait a couple of weeks,” he said. “My kids are at home right now, but they’re already making plans to come to Indy. I’m going to hope I win the tournament, but no matter what, when you get up on the lanes and you mathematically have a chance to win, it isn’t over. We’ll see.”

Competition continues Friday with the match play final rounds in the Roth/Holman Doubles Championship. PBA Hall of Famer Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Fla., and his partner, Tom Smallwood of Saginaw, Mich., will take a 72-pin lead over Belmonte and his partner, Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa., into Friday’s six-game rounds at 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. CT.

In Friday’s doubles matches, the leadoff and anchor bowler from each team will compete head-to-head for 10 bonus pins against the opposing team in each match, and the teams will compete for 30 bonus pins for winning each match, in addition to their actual pinfall totals.

The Roth/Holman PBA Doubles Championship finalists will meet in a five-game Baker format stepladder finals on Sunday, Feb. 15, at 7 p.m. ET at Woodland Bowl, following the live 1 p.m. telecast of the 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions finals. The PBA Doubles show will air on ESPN on March 1 at 1 p.m. ET.

Both doubles match play rounds Friday will be covered live on PBA’s Xtra Frame online bowling channel, and on pba.com’s “live scoring” feature. For Xtra Frame subscription information, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link.

PBA PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP
AMF Bowlero, Wauwatosa, Wis., Jan. 29

Final Match Play Standings (after 36 games, including match play bonus pins; top five advance to ESPN stepladder finals on Saturday, Feb. 14 at 7 p.m. at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis)

1, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 15-6-3, 9,222.
2, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., 14-9-1, 9,170.
3, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 14-8-2, 9,110.
4, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 15-9, 9,107.
5, Tom Daugherty, Tampa, Fla., 11-12-1, 9,070.

Other Cashers (after 36 games)
6, D.J. Archer, Friendswood, Texas, 16-8, 8,989, $7,000.
7, Michael Haugen Jr., Phoenix, Ariz., 15-9, 8,945, $6,000.
8, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Oxford, Fla., 14-10, 8,901, $5,000.
9, Rhino Page, Dade City, Fla., 12-11-1, 8,878, $4,500.
10, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 9-15, 8,742, $4,000.
11, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 11-13, 8,725, $3,800.
12, Scott Norton, Mission Viejo, Calif., 11-12-1, 8,672, $3,600.
13, Dom Barrett, England, 11-13, 8,659, $3,400.
14, Dan MacLelland, Saginaw, Mich., 11-13, 8,516, $3,200.
15, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 7-16-1, 8,485, $3,000.
16, Anthony LaCaze, Melrose Park, Ill., 13-10-1, 8,472, $2,800.
17, Patrick Girard, Canada, 14-10, 8,462, $2,700.
18, Dave Wodka, Beaver Creek, Ohio, 11-12-1, 8,438, $2,600.
19 (tie), Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., 12-12, and Brian Himmler, Cincinnati, 9-15, 8,434, $2,450.
21, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., 8-16, 8,427, $2,300.
22, Connor Pickford, Charlotte, N.C., 12-12, 8,363, $2,200.
23, Brian Valenta, Lockport, Ill., 10-14, 8,288, $2,100.
24, Jon VanHees, Charlestown, R.I., 7-17, 8,286, $2,000.

300 Games (6): Tom Daugherty 2, Scott Norton, Parker Bohn III, Wes Malott, Norm Duke.

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Ronnie Russell Back on Top in PBA Players Championship After Thursday Morning’s Early Match Play Round

by Jerry Schneider January 29, 2015 04:42

Ronnie Russell leap-frogged back into the lead after the second round of match play in the PBA Players Championship Thursday morning at AMF Bowlero Lanes.

Russell, who had a 1,983 pinfall in Thursday morning’s round had games of 268, 225, 216, 279, 260, 290, 256 and 189 and had a 6-2 match play record.

The two-time PBA Tour titlist leads with a 7,186 overall 28-game pinfall and 11-4-1 match play record ahead of reigning Player of the Year Jason Belmonte in second with a 7,067 pinfall and an 8-7-1 match play record. Wednesday’s leader DJ Archer dropped to third with a 7,045 pinfall despite a 12-4 match play record.

“Things are going right and I just need to stay out of my own way,” Russell said. “Once I get out there I don’t think about the score, just making good shots and let everything else take care of itself.

“I’m at a point now where I’m shifting my mindset to making the show to staying in the lead,” he added. “During the break I’ll kind of clear my mind and not think about bowling and then comeback fresh for this afternoon round.”

Russell, a 35-year-old, 11-year PBA Tour veteran, is coming off a stellar year when he won the PBA Bear Open and was the only player to qualify for three television shows during the recent GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling.

Tom Daugherty moved into fourth with a 7,008 pinfall thanks in part to rolling back-to-back 300 games to open the round that saw five 300 games overall.

The 24-player field will return at 1 p.m. CT for the third and final round of match play. After this afternoon’s round, the top five after 36 games advance to the stepladder finals on Saturday, Feb. 14, at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis. The PBA Players Championship finals will air on ESPN on Sunday, Feb. 22, at 1 p.m. ET.

Roth/Holman Doubles action returns Friday with the top 12 doubles teams bowling two six-game match play rounds at 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. CT. After a composite total of 36 qualifying and match play games, the top five teams will advance to the Roth/Holman PBA Doubles Championship finals on Sunday, Feb. 15, at Woodland Bowl, following the live 1 p.m. telecast of the 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions finals.

PBA PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP
AMF Bowlero, Wauwatosa, Wis., Jan. 29

Fourth Round Standings (after 28 games, including match play bonus pins)

1, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., 11-4-1, 7,186.
2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 8-7-1, 7,067.
3, D.J. Archer, Friendswood, Texas, 12-4-0, 7,045.
4, Tom Daugherty, Tampa, Fla., 7-8-1, 7,008.
5, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 10-6-0, 7,002.
6, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 8-6-2, 6,904.
7, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Oxford, Fla., 9-7-0, 6,894.
8, Rhino Page, Dade City, Fla., 8-7-1, 6,870.
9, Michael Haugen Jr., Phoenix, Ariz., 10-6-0, 6,853.
10, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 7-9-0, 6,844.
11, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 6-10-0, 6,787.
12, Patrick Girard, Canada, 11-5-0, 6,713.
13, Scott Norton, Mission Viejo, Calif., 8-7-1, 6,696.
14, Anthony LaCaze, Melrose Park, Ill., 9-6-1, 6,629.
15, Dave Wodka, Beaver Creek, Ohio, 9-7-0, 6,627.
16, Dom Barrett, England, 7-9-0, 6,625.
17, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 5-11-0, 6,618.
18, Brian Himmler, Cincinnati, 5-11-0, 6,570.
19, Brian Valenta, Lockport, Ill., 8-8-0, 6,551.
20, Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., 7-9-0, 6,550.
21, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., 5-11-0, 6,499.
22, Jon VanHees, Charlestown, R.I., 5-11-0, 6,471.
23, Dan MacLelland, Saginaw, Mich., 6-10-0, 6,448.
24, Connor Pickford, Charlotte, N.C., 7-9-0, 6,406.

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