PBA Spare Shots: Was “The Villages” PBA560 Field the Toughest Championship Group in PBA History?

by Bill Vint April 24, 2014 07:40

WAS “THE VILLAGES” FIELD THE TOUGHEST CHAMPIONSHIP GROUP IN PBA HISTORY?

It’s one of those unofficial statistical categories, but long-time PBA observers have been wracking their brains trying to recall if there was ever a tougher field of finalists than the group of five who bowled for the PBA50 Tour UnitedHealthcare Sun Bowl in The Villages title Tuesday night at Spanish Springs Lanes in Florida.

All five finalists – top qualifier Tom Baker, Pete Weber, Norm Duke, Parker Bohn III and Walter Ray Williams Jr. – were PBA Hall of Famers and combined they have won 164 PBA Tour titles, plus another 19 PBA50 Tour titles (not including The Villages’ title Duke won Tuesday). Baker was low man on the PBA Tour titles list with 10. Weber and Duke are tied for third on the all-time list with 37 each. Bohn is sixth with 33. Williams is the all-time leader with 47 Tour title.

Baker is the leader in PBA50 Tour titles with 10 (fifth-best on the all-time list). Williams has won seven titles as a “senior” player. Weber won two titles in his “rookie” year in 2013. Duke got his first PBA50 title in his second appearance (he finished second to another Hall of Famer, Amleto Monacelli, in his “senior” debut a week earlier in New Port Richey, Fla.) Bohn, who also bowled in his second PBA50 event in The Villages, had top-five finishes in both events.

In addition, Williams is a seven-time PBA Player of the Year and two-time defending PBA50 Player of the Year. Duke and Bohn have each won PBA Player of the Year honors twice. Weber has never won Player of the Year honors, but is a former PBA and PBA50 Rookie of the Year. Baker is the only player to win PBA50 Player of the Year honors four straight years.

The PBA50 Tour season is just getting started, but it promises to be the most exciting campaign ever for the elder statesmen of the PBA…and all of the remaining tournaments will be covered live on PBA’s exclusive online bowling channel Xtra Frame (except for the USBC Senior Masters, which will be aired on USBC’s online channel BowlTV. To subscribe to Xtra Frame, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link. Next up: the PBA50 Miller High Life Classic presented by Columbia 300 from George Pappas’ Victory Lanes in Mooresville, N.C., Monday, April 28-Wednesday, April 30.

PBA REGIONAL ROUNDUP: VOSS TOPS WALTER RAY IN PBA50 SOUTH REGIONAL EVENT

In a best-of-three-game final between PBA Hall of Famers, Brian Voss of Atlanta, Ga., defeated Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Ocala, Fla., 221-216, 257-247, to win $2,000 and his seventh PBA Regional title in the PBA50 Sarasota South Open at Sarasota (Fla.) Lanes on Friday, April 18.

In the semifinal round, Voss eliminated another hall of famer, Wayne Webb of Columbus Ohio, 180-189, 247-198, 212-167, while Williams swept Ron Mohr of Las Vegas, 187-186, 212-209.

● Amateur Eric Traylor of Pearland, Texas, defeated 2012 PBA Southwest Region Rookie of the Year Sean Lavery of Plano, Texas, 241-173, to win the PBA U Can Bowl 2 Houston Southwest Challenge presented by Motiv at Houston’s Del-Mar Lanes Sunday. PBA Challenge events are limited to bowlers who have never won a PBA event.

In the championship match, Traylor followed a 7-10 split in the first frame with a string of eight strikes and coasted to the victory. He earned $2,000 but does not get credit for a PBA title because he isn’t a member.

Amateur Brett Wolfe of Tempe, Ariz., defeated Steven Villanueva of North Las Vegas, 256-171, to win the PBA South Point West Challenge event at South Point Bowling Center on April 18, and Californians Kevin Jones and Deeronn Booker teamed up to win the companion PBA South Point Member/Non-Member Doubles on Sunday.

Wolfe, who won the 2002 USBC Masters as an amateur, earned $1,700, but doesn’t get credit for a PBA title because he is not a PBA member. PBA Challenge events are open to non-champions only. Both weekend tournaments were presented by Ebonite.

Booker, from Anaheim, teamed up with Jones, from Diamond Bar, to defeat Jarrett Mizo of Honolulu and Tony Sambueno of Saginaw, Mich., 470-341, in the doubles title match to claim the $4,000 first prize.

● Closing out the April schedule will be the star-studded PBA50 Cherokee Lanes Southern Open presented by MOTIV in Canton, Ga., April 24-26. The tournament is expected to attract a field of top 50-and-older PBA players as they make their way north to North Carolina for the Miller High Life Classic presented by Columbia 300 at George Pappas Victory Lanes in Mooresville, N.C., April 27-30. The Miller High Life Classic will be covered in its entirety via PBA’s online bowling channel Xtra Frame. Click on the Xtra Frame logo on the pba.com homepage for subscription and schedule information.

The annual PBA West/Northwest Hawaii tripleheader is also on tap, beginning with the PBA Kona West/Northwest Open at KBXtreme Lanes in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, April 27-28, and followed by the PBA John Gonsalves Memorial West/Northwest Open at Pearl Harbor Naval Station on May 1, and the Hickam AFB West/Northwest Open presented by Columbia 300 May 2-4.

The May 2-4 PBA Regional calendar also includes the Junction City (Kan.) Southwest/Midwest Open presented by Storm at Junction City Bowl; the Country Club Lanes Central Open presented by MOTIV in Elkhart, Ind., and the reduced entry-fee Bowl-A-Vard Lanes Midwest Open presented by Roto-Grip in Madison, Wis.

On the May 9-11 schedule are the PBA and PBA50 Baldo Campana Central Opens benefiting the Lorain County Kids Fund at Rebman Recreation in Lorain, Ohio; the Rocky Mount South Open at The Bowling Center in Rocky Mount, N.C.; the Midcontinent Communications Midwest Open presented by DV8 at Empire Bowl in Sioux Falls, S.D., and the Vanessa Brown Homes West Open presented by Columbia 300 at Yosemite Lanes in Modesto, Calif.

The May 16-18 schedule features the PBA Lightning Lanes Challenge for non-winners in Marion, N.C., and the PBA/PBA50 Daffodil Bowl Opens presented by U.S. Foods in Puyallup, Wash.

Memorial Day weekend will include the CBS Sports Network television finals of Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort Summer Swing in Shawnee, Okla., along with the Colony Park Lanes East Challenge (a reduced entry fee non-champions event) in York, Pa.; the Brookmont Bowling Center Midwest/Central Challenge (a non-champions event) and the Brookmont Bowling Center Midwest/Central Re-Entry Classic presented by Radical Bowling in Kankakee, Ill., and a pair of West Region PBA50 events in Arizona – the fifth annual Lona King Sagurao West Open at Johnson Lanes in Sun City West followed by the Miller Lite Western Open at Starlite Lanes in Flagstaff.

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

● Three-time PBA Tour titlist Teata Semiz, who celebrated his 80th birthday on April 16, returned to competition in the PBA50 Tour UnitedHealthcare Sun Bowl in The Villages presented by Radical this week. Semiz, an eight-time PBA50 Tour winner, finished 106th in the 158-player field. It was Semiz’s first PBA50 Tour appearance since 2012.

In 2013, non-member Darrell Ducat became unofficially the oldest player ever to bowl in a PBA tournament when he competed in the PBA50 Tour’s Sun Bowl in The Villages at age 87.

Anthony LaCaze of Melrose Park, Ill., the 2009-10 PBA Rookie of the Year, recorded the fourth-highest all-events total in 111 years of USBC Open Championships history on his way to the Regular All-Events lead on April 21. The 31-year-old right-hander, a former PBA Touring Player, posted series of 766 in doubles, 765 in team and 742 in singles for a 2,273 total. The USBC Open Championships all-events record belongs to Matt McNiel of Prior Lake, Minn., who shot 2,326 to win the 2010 Regular All-Events title.

● Reminder: Four paid entries into Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing will be awarded in a “win-a-spot” qualifier to be hosted by FireLake Bowling Center on Sunday, April 27, at noon. The entry fee is $150. Competition will involve nine games total pinfall, including three games each on the Wolf, Badger and Bear patterns that will be used during the Summer Swing. To enter the win-a-spot qualifier, call FireLake at 405-275-0404.

● Former PBA member Lou Ivancik of Detroit, a pro shop owner, bowling center manager and member of the Greater Detroit Bowling Hall of Fame, died on April 18 at age 77.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

PBA Spare Shots: Concrete Software’s PBA Bowling Challenge Approaches 10 Million Downloads

by Bill Vint April 18, 2014 03:48

Concrete Software’s popular PBA Bowling Challenge continues to reel in record numbers of users as one of the mobile device industry’s most popular games, approaching 10 million total downloads.

Originally introduced via Google Play for Android devices, PBA Bowling Challenge has surpassed 7.6 million free downloads and maintains an impressive 4.5 star rating out of 5.0. In addition, since its introduction in the Apple Store, another 1.5 million Apple device users have downloaded the game and given it a 4.6 star rating.

Some other interesting statistics regarding PBA Bowling Challenge:

● The game is averaging 11,200 new users per day via Google Play and 5,250 new users per day via Apple Store;

● More than 102,000 Android device users and 68,000-plus Apple device users play the day every day;

● Android users are buying more than 30,000 bowling balls and 41,000-plus energy refreshes daily while Apple users are purchasing 18,000-plus bowling balls and 33,000 energy refreshes every day.

To download the PBA game in a version to fit your mobile device, visit http://www.concretesoftware.com/web/games/pba-bowling-challenge/ and click on the proper app store button.

PBA REGIONAL ROUNDUP: RED-HOT CASTILLO WINS FIRELAKE/GRAND CASINO TITLE

Dino Castillo of Carrollton, Texas, defeated reigning PBA Southwest Region Player of the Year Joe Findling of Mesquite, Texas, 288-203, to win the PBA FireLake/Grand Casino Resort Southwest Open presented by Dexter at FireLake Bowling Center in Shawnee, Okla., on Sunday, April 13.

Castillo pitched two 300 games in qualifying to pace the field and earn two byes in the single-elimination finals. He then threw a third 300 game, averaging 283 in his four games of match play, to coast to his fifth PBA Regional title.

Castillo fired games of 300 and 278 at Mike Edwards of Tulsa, Okla., in winning their best-of-three-game Round of 8 match, 2-0. He then eliminated former PBA SW Region Rookie of the Year Sean Lavery of Pasadena, Texas, 268-216, to advance to the final match.

● Dave Wodka of Henderson, Nev., posted a 13-2-1 match play record and a 24-game total of 5,902 pins Sunday to win his 18th PBA Regional title in the PBA Earl Anthony West/Northwest Memorial at Earl Anthony’s Dublin Bowl in Dublin, Calif.

Wodka, who earned $2,500, defeated Jake Peters of Henderson, Nev., by 177 pins for the title.

In the companion PBA50 Open, Marty Deh of San Jose, Calif., went 9-3 and knocked down 4,577 total pins for 20 games to top Mark McCreary of Livermore, Calif., for his fourth West PBA50 Regional title and $1,500.

Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa. defeated Joe Paluszek of Bensalem, Pa., 185-165, to win the PBA Rockaway Eastern Open presented by Storm at Rockaway Lanes in Rockaway, N.J., Sunday for his 10th career PBA Regional title and a $2,500 first prize.

Paluszek dominated qualifying and retained the lead after posting a 7-5 match play record. O’Neill, who qualified second, also went 7-5 in match play and defeated Ryan Shafer of Horseheads, N.Y., 279-247, to advance to the title match.

● Brandon Novak of Chillicothe, Ohio defeated Carleton Chambers of Detroit by 189 pins to win the PBA Debbie & Leo Nunan Memorial Central Open presented by Track at AMF Stardust Lanes in Grove City, Ohio, Sunday.

Novak finished with a 9-3 match play record and a total of 4,844 pins for 20 games, including match play bonus pins, for his second career PBA Regional title and a $2,300 prize.

● Heading into Easter weekend, the schedule features the PBA50 Sarasota Southern Open at Sarasota (Fla.) Lanes, Wednesday through Friday, and over the weekend, the PBA South Point West Challenge (for non-champions), the South Point West Member/Non-Member Doubles in Las Vegas, and the PBA Del Mar Lanes U Can Bowl 2 Southwest Challenge presented by MOTIV (for non-champions) in Houston, Texas.

Closing the April schedule will be the PBA50 Cherokee Lanes Southern Open presented by MOTIV in Canton, Ga., April 24-26.

The annual PBA West/Northwest Hawaii tripleheader is also on tap, beginning with the PBA Kona West/Northwest Open at KBXtreme Lanes in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, April 27-28, and followed by the PBA John Gonsalves Memorial West/Northwest Open at Schofield Barracks on May 1, and the Hickam AFB West Northwest Open presented by Columbia 300 May 2-4.

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

● Reminder: Four paid entries into Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing will be awarded in a “win-a-spot” qualifier to be hosted by FireLake Bowling Center on Sunday, April 27, at noon. The entry fee is $150. Competition will involve nine games total pinfall, including three games each on the Wolf, Badger and Bear patterns that will be used during the Summer Swing. To enter the win-a-spot qualifier, call FireLake at 405-275-0404.

● Noted New Jersey dentist Dr. Robert Russano, a longtime PBA member who competed in PBA Tour events from 1991-93 died April 12 at the age of 72 after a lengthy illness.  He was also a member of the Morris County B.A. Hall of Fame.

● Former PBA Touring Player David Bash past of New Martinsville, W.Va., died unexpectedly on April 10 at age 58. Services for Bash, who joined the PBA in 1974, were held in Parkersburg, on April 21.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

PBA Spare Shots: Belmonte, Walter Ray Achieve PBA Pinfall Milestones

by Bill Vint April 9, 2014 07:58

One of the most notable pinfall milestones a grassroots bowler can accomplish is membership in the United States Bowling Congress Open Championships’ 100,000 pinfall club, a feat long-time PBA member and current Storm Products Vice President-Public Relations Bob Hart accomplished recently in Reno. In his 58th USBC Open appearance, Hart became the 14th bowler to join that elite club.

By way of comparison, Australia’s Jason Belmonte is the first member a new PBA 100,000 pinfall club, and it only took him five years to do it. The reigning PBA Player of the Year is the first player to surpass that milestone in PBA World Series of Bowling competition, knocking over 101,431 pins in 456 games (a 222.43 scoring pace). Sean Rash will likely become the second member of the WSOB 100,000 pinfall club this fall in his sixth World Series. Rash has a 99,717 total for 445 games, averaging 224.04.

While membership in any 100,000 pinfall club is noteworthy, PBA Hall of Famer Walter Ray Williams Jr. has established a standard for PBA Tour competition that will be hard to beat. Williams closed the 2012-13 PBA Tour season as the first-and-only player to knock down more than five million pins in PBA Tour competition. As of Dec. 31, 2013, Williams had bowled 22,926 games in 775 PBA Tour events and knocked down a total of 5,019,834 pins – a lifetime average of 218.95.

To put WRW’s career into perspective, an average league bowler rolling 100 games in a season would need to average nearly 219 for a little more than 229 years to match that feat.

Williams’ closest challenger is fellow Hall of Famer Pete Weber who has toppled 4,650,511 pins in 21,482 games during a career that began in 1979. Weber has averaged 216.48 in his 750 PBA Tour events.

ESPN “SPORTS SCIENCE” SEGMENT EXPLORES RASH’S STRIKING POWER ON SUNDAY

Sunday’s ESPN coverage of the PBA League Elias Cup Finals at 2 p.m. ET will include a special “Sports Science” feature by John Brenkus examining PBA star Sean Rash’s striking power. The use of a variety of sensors and slow-motion video helps Brenkus break down Rash’s delivery as he explains how the former PBA Player of the Year generates the speed and power that set him apart from the “average” league bowler.

XTRA FRAME TO PROVIDE EXTENSIVE COVERAGE OF PBA50 TOUR

Beginning with the PBA50 Pasco County Open at Lane Glo Bowl in New Port Richey, Fla., and continuing through the summer months, PBA’s exclusive online bowling channel, Xtra Frame, will provide extensive live coverage of almost the complete PBA50 Tour’s 2014 schedule.

PBA50 Tour events confirmed for coverage following the April 13-15 Pasco County Open include the Miller High Life Classic presented by Columbia 300, George Pappas Victory Lanes, Mooresville, N.C., April 27-30; the Suncoast PBA Senior U.S. Open presented by Dexter, Suncoast Bowling Center, Las Vegas, June 1-6; the Northern California Classic presented by MOTIV, Harvest Park Bowl, Brentwood, Calif., June 15-18; the Dick Weber Super Senior Classic presented by Storm, Pro Bowl West, Fort Wayne, Ind., July 18-20; the PBA50 Pro Bowl West Fort Wayne Classic presented by Ebonite, Pro Bowl West, Fort Wayne, Ind., July 20-23; the Dayton Classic presented by Roto Grip, Capri Bowling Lanes, Kettering, Ohio, July 28-31; the South Shore Open presented by DV8, Olympia Lanes, Hammond, Ind., Aug. 4-7, and the Treasure Island Resort & Casino Open presented by Hammer, Island Xtreme Bowl, Welch, Minn., Aug. 10-13.

The USBC Senior Masters at South Point Bowling Center in Las Vegas, June 8-13, will be covered by USBC’s BowlTV.

The star-studded 2014 PBA50 Tour season will feature a number of PBA Hall of Famers (Norm Duke, Parker Bohn III, Tom Baker, Dale Eagle, Amleto Monacelli, Randy Pedersen, Johnny Petraglia, Brian Voss, Wayne Webb, Pete Weber and Walter Ray Williams Jr.) and a host of PBA Tour and PBA50 Tour champions. Throughout the season, PBA50 competitors will be competing for three berths in the end-of-season PBA50 Tour Finals which will be conducted in conjunction with the PBA World Series of Bowling VI in Las Vegas.

For scheduled PBA50 Tour events, Xtra Frame will provide start-to-finish coverage of qualifying and match play rounds, including title matches. To subscribe to Xtra Frame, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link. Monthly subscriptions are $7.99; a full year of Xtra Frame coverage, which includes access to a huge archive of past telecasts, interviews and instructional materials, is available for $64.99.

In addition to the PBA50 Tour events, Xtra Frame will provide live coverage of all preliminary and match play rounds of Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort Summer Swing from FireLake Bowling Center in Shawnee, Okla., May 19-22.

BARNES FAMILY’S STRIKE OUT DIABETES FUNDRAISER SET FOR MAY 10

Seventeen-time PBA Tour titlist Chris Barnes and his wife Lynda will host their fifth annual Strike Out Diabetes fundraiser at Plano Super Bowl in Plano, Texas, on Saturday, May 10. The Barnes family hopes to add $60,000 to the more than $250,000 they’ve already raised in support of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

The event will include a lineup of PBA, Team USA and USBC personalities including Clara Guerrero, Kim Terrell-Kearney, Tennelle Milligan, Rod Ross, Paul Fleming, Dino Castillo, and Chris and Stefanie Johnson, among others. It will include a coaching clinic, silent auction, prize drawings, trick shots and more. To learn more about sponsorship opportunities or how you can participate, visit strikeoutdiabetes.org.

PBA REGIONAL ROUNDUP: GUNN WINS FIRST REGIONAL TITLE IN INDIANA

Brian Gunn of Chicago defeated Ronnie Russell of Marion, Ind., 268-209, to win his first PBA Regional title in the PBA Security Federal Savings Bank Central/Midwest Championship at Star Lanes in Lafayette, Ind., Sunday.

Gunn, the top qualifier, earned $2,300. Russell defeated Tom Hess of Urbandale, Iowa, 247-244, to advance to the championship match after Hess kicked off the stepladder finals by eliminating Mike Wolfe of Jeffersonville, Ind., 255-245, and Tim Mack of Indianapolis, 269-238.

● The April 11-13 PBA Regional schedule includes the PBA Rockaway Lanes Eastern Open presented by Storm at Rockaway Lanes in Rockaway, N.J.; one of the West/Northwest Region’s premier events, the PBA Earl Anthony Memorial Classic at Earl Anthony’s Dublin Bowl in Dublin, Calif.; a PBA Summer Swing preview event, the FireLake Grand Casino Hotel Resort Southwest Open presented by Dexter in Shawnee, Okla.; and the PBA Debbie & Leo Nunan Memorial Central Open presented by Track at AMF Stardust Lanes in Grove City, Ohio.

The April 16-18 weekend features the PBA50 Sarasota Southern Open at Sarasota (Fla.) Lanes; the PBA South Point West Challenge (for non-champions) and the South Point West Member/Non-Member Doubles in Las Vegas, and the PBA Del Mar Lanes U Can Bowl 2 Southwest Challenge presented by MOTIV (for non-champions) in Houston, Texas.

Closing the April schedule will be the PBA50 Cherokee Lanes Southern Open presented by MOTIV in Canton, Ga., April 24-26.

The annual PBA West/Northwest Hawaii tripleheader is also on tap, beginning with the PBA Kona West/Northwest Open at KBXtreme Lanes in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, April 27-28, and followed by the PBA John Gonsalves Memorial West/Northwest Open at Schofield Barracks on May 1, and the Hickam AFB West Northwest Open presented by Columbia 300 May 2-4.

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

Reminder: PBA members, amateur bowlers and fans who are planning to attend the Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing in Shawnee, Okla., are urged to use a special online link to obtain the special $99-per-night room rate. To reserve your room at the special PBA rate, visit http://usgcr.webhotel.microsdc.us/ and enter 140516SUMM in the Group Code Box. Or you can call the Grand directly at 405-964-7777 and mention the PBA Summer Swing to obtain the preferred rate.

● Reminder: Four paid entries into Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing will be awarded in a “win-a-spot” qualifier to be hosted by FireLake Bowling Center on Sunday, April 27, at noon. The entry fee is $150. Competition will involve nine games total pinfall, including three games each on the Wolf, Badger and Bear patterns that will be used during the Summer Swing. To enter the win-a-spot qualifier, call FireLake at 405-275-0404.

● A line of lightweight spring clothing items are now available at the PBA Store. To shop for PBA-logoed merchandise, visit pba.com and click on the “shop” tab.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

Silver Lake Atom Splitters Sweep Philly Hitmen, Advance to PBA League Elias Cup Finals Vs. L.A. X

by Bill Vint April 6, 2014 06:55

ALLEN PARK, Mich. – Chris Barnes and his Silver Lake Atom Splitters teammates swept the Philadelphia Hitmen in the final Professional Bowlers Association League semifinal match to earn a berth in the 2014 Elias Cup finals against Jason Belmonte and his L.A. X team.

The final semifinal round match at Thunderbowl Lanes aired Sunday on ESPN. The all-Los Angeles area battle for the Elias Cup will air on ESPN on Sunday, April 13, at 2 p.m. ET.

After finishing in sixth place among eight teams in the 2013 introductory PBA League season, the Atom Splitters, presented by Spiceworks and owned by Internet podcast innovator and television host Chris Hardwick, bolstered their 2014 lineup with the addition of former PBA Players of the Year Tommy Jones and Wes Malott, and won 11 of a possible 12 points in matches against the Dallas Strikers and the Hitmen, presented by High 5 Gear, to advance to the Elias Cup finals at Brunswick Zone Carolier in North Brunswick, N.J.

“Our team keeps getting better as we go,” Barnes said. “We’ll switch venues for the Elias Cup, which will have an impact. Carolier hooks a lot less than Thunderbowl does. As far as L.A. X’s fearless leader (Australian two-handed star Belmonte) is concerned, that’s not much of a deal, but I don’t know about the rest of their team. They have a lot of good shot-makers, but so do we. I think we’re down to the two strongest teams.”

Belmonte agreed.

“The Atom Splitters are a stacked team,” the L.A. X team leader said. “I feel our performance speaks for itself. If there’s a team that’s going to give (Silver Lake) a run for their money, it’s us.”

L.A. X, presented by GoBowling.com, eliminated the BROOKLYN STyLES and the defending Elias Cup champion New York City WTT KingPins in earning its berth in the Elias Cup finale.

Barnes gave Silver Lake a 1-0 lead by winning the singles match against Philadelphia franchise player Bill O’Neill. Barnes survived a 3-4-6-7-10 split in the sixth frame after throwing five strikes to start the game. After he failed to convert the split, he threw another string of four strikes for a 248-236 win.

In alternate ball doubles, Philadelphia’s Josh Blanchard and Ryan Ciminelli threw back-to-back strikes in the ninth and 10th frames to overcome the Atom Splitters’ one-pin lead, but Barnes and partner Bryon Smith answered with three strikes in their 10th frame to pull out a 228-226 win for a 2-0 lead.

Silver Lake’s Tommy Jones, Dom Barrett and Wes Malott started the Baker trios contest with six strikes, building a 53-pin lead, and held on for a 233-216 win over Ciminelli, O’Neill and Dan MacLelland for a 3-0 lead.

The Atom Splitters completed the sweep with a convincing 247-224 victory in the Baker team finale. Smith, Barnes, Barrett, Malott and Jones struck on eight of their first nine shots and Silver Lake never gave the Hitmen a chance.

“We’re five players deep,” Barnes said. “We didn’t bowl very well in our first match (against Dallas), but we survived that. We figured that was as bad as it could get, so we threw everyone back out there and it worked out. We just don’t like to lose. Ever.”

PROFESSIONAL BOWLERS ASSOCIATION LEAGUE SEMIFINAL MATCH TWO
Thunderbowl Lanes, Allen Park, Mich.

Final Standings
Silver Lake Atom Splitters presented by Spiceworks def. Philadelphia Hitmen presented by High 5 Gear, 6-0.

Singles Match (one point)
Chris Barnes, Silver Lake Atom Splitters, def. Bill O’Neill, Philadelphia Hitmen, 248-236.

Alternate Ball Doubles (one point)
Silver Lake Atom Splitters (Chris Barnes/Bryon Smith) def. Philadelphia Hitmen (Ryan Ciminelli/Josh Blanchard), 228-226.

Baker Trios (one point)
Silver Lake Atom Splitters (Tommy Jones/Dom Barrett/Wes Malott) def. Philadelphia Hitmen (Ryan Ciminelli/Bill O’Neill/Dan MacLelland), 233-216.

Five-Man Baker Team (three points)
Silver Lake Atom Splitters (Bryon Smith/Chris Barnes/Dom Barrett/Wes Malott/Tommy Jones) def. Philadelphia Hitmen (Dan MacLelland/Mike DeVaney/Josh Blanchard/Bill O’Neill/Ryan Ciminelli), 247-224.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

PBA Spare Shots: Xtra Frame to Cover First Leg of Race of PBA50 Tour Finals

by Bill Vint April 4, 2014 04:05

The road to the 2014 PBA50 Tour Finals begins April 13 in New Port Richey, Fla., and PBA fans around the world can watch the first leg of the race on Xtra Frame.

The PBA50 Pasco County Open from Lane Glo Bowl will not only kick off the 2014 PBA50 Tour season, but it will make the “senior” debut of PBA Hall of Famers Norm Duke and Parker Bohn III competing in a field of more than 110 players that will include fellow hall of famers Tom Baker, Dale Eagle, Amleto Monacelli, Randy Pedersen, Brian Voss, Wayne Webb, Pete Weber and Walter Ray Williams Jr. Throughout the season, PBA50 competitors will be competing for three berths in the end-of-season PBA50 Tour Finals which will be conducted in conjunction with the PBA World Series of Bowling VI in Las Vegas.

The Pasco County Open will be the first of several PBA50 Tour events covered live on PBA’s exclusive online bowling channel, Xtra Frame. Start-to-finish coverage of the Pasco County event (won last year by Bob Learn Jr.) begins with qualifying rounds on Sunday, April 13, and continues through the match play eliminations on Tuesday, April 15. To subscribe to Xtra Frame, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link. Monthly subscriptions are $7.99; a full year of Xtra Frame coverage, which includes access to a huge archive of past telecasts, interviews and instructional materials, is available for $64.99.

FIRELAKE TO HOST PBA SUMMER SWING “WIN A SPOT” QUALIFIER

Four paid entries into Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing will be awarded in a “win a spot” qualifier to be hosted by FireLake Bowling Center on Sunday, April 27, at noon. The entry fee is $150. Competition will involve nine games total pinfall, including three games each on the Wolf, Badger and Bear patterns that will be used during the Summer Swing. To enter, call FireLake Bowling Center (405-275-0404).

“BOWLING GUY” JASON THOMAS APPEARS ON NEULION’S “DIGITAL DUDES” PANEL

Sports are no longer just for spectators. Today’s fans are more active, connected and engaged than ever before. NeuLion, a world leader in digital video broadcasting and the PBA’s partner in distribution of its Xtra Frame online bowling content, is changing the way fans consume sports with the most far-reaching digital experiences, delivering live and on-demand HD, interactive video to any device.

The developments that will immerse fans in the game like never before - letting them control how and when they want to watch, view real-time highlights, multiple camera angles, instant replays, slow motion, live stats, social media and chat – are topics NeuLion and other industry experts are discussing in a series of “Digital Dudes” forums that can be found on NeuLion’s website.

The most current group of experts appearing on Digital Dudes included Xtra Frame’s own “Bowling Guy,” Jason Thomas. To hear the discussion involving Thomas, NeuLion co-founder and Executive VP Chris Wagner, National Basketball Association Senior VP-Interactive Services Michael Allen, University of Nebraska Director of Web Operations Kelly Mosier, Newtek Chief Relationship Officer Phillip Nelson and Limelight Senior Marketing Director Jason Thibeault, visit neulion.com and click on the Digital Dudes link.

WORLD BOWLING TOUR LEADERS RETAIN POSITIONS

In the aftermath of three World Bowling Tour events in the Middle East and the Brunswick Euro Challenge, Sean Rash and Kelly Kulick remain the World Bowling Tour men’s and women’s points leaders. The WBT points list is based upon a two-year, rolling system of points earned in World Bowling (former World Tenpin Bowling Association)-PBA International Tour events.

As of March 26, Rash (635 points) held a 30-point edge over Mika Koivuniemi. Jason Belmonte is third at 601 followed by Tommy Jones (526). Kulick leads the women with 780 points, followed by Liz Johnson (510), Missy Parkin (481) and Sweden’s Sandra Andersson (440). The next WBT event is a women only competition, the USBC Queens in Reno, June 27-July 3.

ONLINE AUCTION RAISES $3,128 FOR CHRIS PAUL’S CP3 FOUNDATION

The PBA’s online PBA League auction to raise money for Chris Paul’s CP3 Foundation generated $3,128 to help support the PBA League owner’s charitable activities. Included in the auction were a number of bowling balls and game-worn jerseys belonging to PBA League franchise players, including L.A. X team leader Jason Belmonte.

Belmonte earned the right to select the charity that would receive the online auction funds by winning a special skills challenge competition involving all PBA League franchise players during the PBA World Series of Bowling V. The Australian two-handed star designated the L.A. X team owner’s foundation as his charity of choice.

PBA REGIONS TO COOPERATE WITH PROPRIETORS CUP III EVENT IN OHIO

The PBA and its East, Central and Midwest Regions are cooperating in the promotion of the Proprietors Cup III, an independent tournament that will be open to all comers, July 11-13 at Beaver-Vu Bowl in Beavercreek, Ohio. Projected first prize is $15,000. If the winner is a PBA member, he/she will be credited with a PBA Regional title.

Proprietors Cup III will include a win-a-spot round and Ace Mitchel All-Star Team Challenge on Friday, qualifying on Saturday and elimination rounds on Sunday. Complete details will be posted on pba.com in the “regional tour” section under the “schedules” tab.

PBA REGIONAL ROUNDUP: CARTER WINS MIDWEST/CENTRAL PBA50 TITLE

Tom Carter of Rockford, Ill., defeated Dale Traber of Cedarburg, Wis., 278-172, to win the PBA50 Boys & Girls Club Midwest/Central Open at Liberty Lanes in Carpentersville, Ill., on Saturday, March 29. The title was Carter’s fifth PBA50 Regional title. He also earned $1,500 along with his title.

Steve Pavlinko Jr. of Sewell, N.J., defeated 2013 PBA East Region Rookie of the Year Gary Haines of West Babylon, N.Y., 244-236, to win his first PBA Regional title in the PBA Bowlers Discount Pro Shop Eastern Open at Brunswick Zone Normandy in Ellicott City, Md., Sunday.

Pavlinko survived a tense 10th frame for the victory. Haines, needing a double in his final frame for the win, carried the first strike but left a solid 8 pin on the second shot to miss out on his first PBA title. With his win, Pavlinko joined his father Steve Pavlinko Sr. and uncle Larry Pavlinko as the third member of the family to capture PBA Regional titles.

● An extensive schedule of spring PBA Regional events continues into April and May.

The April 4-6 weekend includes the joint PBA Security Federal Savings Bank Central/Midwest Championship at Star Lanes in Lafayette, Ind.

The April 11-13 schedule includes the PBA Rockaway Lanes Eastern Open presented by Storm at Rockaway Lanes in Rockaway, N.J.; one of the West/Northwest Region’s premier events, the PBA Earl Anthony Memorial Classic at Earl Anthony’s Dublin Bowl in Dublin, Calif.; a PBA Summer Swing preview event, the FireLake Grand Casino Hotel Resort Southwest Open presented by Dexter in Shawnee, Okla.; and the PBA Debbie & Leo Nunan Memorial Central Open presented by Track at AMF Stardust Lanes in Grove City, Ohio.

The April 16-18 weekend features the PBA50 Sarasota Southern Open at Sarasota (Fla.) Lanes; the PBA South Point West Challenge (for non-champions) and the South Point West Member/Non-Member Doubles in Las Vegas, and the PBA Del Mar Lanes U Can Bowl 2 Southwest Challenge presented by MOTIV (for non-champions) in Houston, Texas.

Closing the April schedule will be the PBA50 Cherokee Lanes Southern Open presented by MOTIV in Canton, Ga., April 24-26.

The annual PBA West/Northwest Hawaii tripleheader is also on tap, beginning with the PBA Kona West/Northwest Open at KBXtreme Lanes in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, April 27-28, and followed by the PBA John Gonsalves Memorial West/Northwest Open at Schofield Barracks on May 1, and the Hickam AFB West Northwest Open presented by Columbia 300 May 2-4.

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

Reminder: PBA members, amateur bowlers and fans who are planning to attend the Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing in Shawnee, Okla., are urged to use a special online link to obtain the special $99-per-night room rate. To reserve your room at the special PBA rate, visit http://usgcr.webhotel.microsdc.us/ and enter 140516SUMM in the Group Code Box. Or you can call the Grand directly at 405-964-7777 and mention the PBA Summer Swing to obtain the preferred rate.

● Storm Products Vice President-Public Relations Bob Hart, a long-time fixture as a Storm representative at PBA events, became the 14th player in USBC Open Championships history to knock down 100,000 pins when he accomplished the feat in his 58th tournament appearance on April 1 in Reno. Needing 472 pins to reach the milestone, the 76-year-old USBC Hall of Famer rolled a 561 series in team event and finished with a 1,645 all-events total after doubles and singles to boost his career pinfall total to 101,173 pins. The late Joe Norris is the all-time USBC Open Championships pinfall leader with 123,770 pins in a record-tying 71 appearances.

David Letterman’s late-night bowling career is coming to an end. Arguably the late-night television host who has done the most to popularize bowling announced on Thursday that his lengthy run with CBS Television will come to an end, probably in 2015. Over the years, Letterman has featured comical bowling stunts with superstars Dick Weber, Mike Aulby, Norm Duke, Tommy Jones and Chris Barnes...not to mention his own feat of throwing bowling balls off a five-story building.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.