March 1, 2007 19:00
In a situation that he’s not accustomed to being in, Jeff Carter has the perfect aggressive mindset and plans to keep it that way. The Denny’s PBA Tour exempt bowler who has never won a title on the sport’s highest level regained the lead Friday night in the 64th U.S. Open at Brunswick Zone Carolier.
Carter, who led the 492-bowler qualifying field on Wednesday, accumulated a record of 6-2 and a 35-game pinfall of 7,870 in the PBA Major’s first round of match play. Carter outdistanced his closest competitor, Pete Weber, by 86 pins in the round-robin portion of the event which carried all previous pinfall from the tournament over and awarded 30 bonus pins for each win and 15 for a tie.
“Not to sound too cliché, but I’m still taking this thing one round at a time,” said Carter (Springfield, Ill.). “There are eight more games tomorrow morning. My game plan is to win as many games as possible and pick up as many pins as possible. Being aggressive and having fun is what got me here so far and I don’t plan on changing that.”
Carter opened the round dropping his first match to Wes Malott, 236-193, before rebounding with three consecutive wins. Carter’s only other game under the 200 mark resulted in a game five loss to Dino Castillo (Carrollton, Texas).
While Weber (St. Ann, Mo.) had a better winning percentage, going 7-1 in the match play, the 33-time titlist could not make up any ground on Carter in the final game despite beating Sean Rash (Wichita, Kan.), 236-209.
It was not all disappointing though for Weber, who finished Friday night with 7,784, as he started the round 21st, 200 pins behind then-second place Carter.
Dave D’Entremont (Middleburg Heights, Ohio) also came from the second half of the 24-man round-robin match play field, moving from 17th to third as the only bowler to go a perfect 8-0 in the round and end the night with 7,664.
Wes Malott, who entered round at the No. 1 position, slipped three spots to fourth, going 5-3 in the round and ending with 7,654.
The final two eight-game blocks take place Saturday beginning at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. EST. The top four bowlers advance to Sunday’s championship round.
The final four will bowl for the $100,000 top prize and three-season exemption live on ESPN Sunday at Noon EST at Brunswick Zone Carolier.
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