On paper, the team of Norm Duke and Walter Ray Williams Jr. should have been dominant in the first outdoor PBA event since 2001. In reality, they were.
Duke and Williams, two of the most decorated bowlers in history, completed their march through the special summer doubles event, sweeping the championship round matches against Tony Reyes and Robert Smith to win the GEICO® PBA All-Star Shootout Hosted by Six Flags at Six Flags St. Louis.
Although Reyes and Smith came into the finals as the only team to go 3-0 in round robin match play, they were no match for Duke and Williams, who swept the two singles matches – worth one point each – and the final doubles match worth two points for the 4-0 win. The pair of Hall of Famers – Williams a PBA and USBC Hall of Famer and Duke a USBC Hall of Famer – with a combined 68 Denny’s PBA Tour titles split the $50,000 top prize.
The event featured 16 of the PBA’s biggest stars split into eight teams for an alternate shot doubles event, where any split converted was worth five bonus pins and teams striking on their fill ball were allowed an extended 10th frame.
In the finals, Duke won the first singles match over Reyes, striking seven consecutive times in frames 3-9 to give “Will Duke ‘Em” a 1-0 lead. Duke finished the match with a score of 258, striking on his fill ball to give himself the extra frame possibility. Reyes had a chance to take the lead by striking out in the 10th and throwing one extra strike, but he left a 3-10 split in the 10th frame to fall, 258-233.
The second match also featured some drama as Williams converted a 2-5-7-8 split in the sixth frame to earn five bonus pins which turned out to be the difference. Smith led after a five-bagger in frames 2-6, but a spare in the seventh frame stopped his momentum. After the split conversion, Williams struck four consecutive times to take the lead, but a nine-spare with his second ball in the 10th meant he didn’t have an endless 10th frame opportunity.
That gave Smith a chance to double in the 10th to win. After a strike with his first shot, he knocked down just eight on his next shot, giving Williams the 259-255 win and his team a 2-0 lead in the finals.
With the doubles match worth two points, Reyes and Smith could have sent the finals to a one-ball sudden death roll-off with a win.
Both teams had opens early in the match but Reyes and Smith held a slight edge heading into the seventh frame. Then Duke and Williams stepped up their game and struck four consecutive times, but were unable to strike with their fill ball and finished with 219. They watched as Reyes and Smith left a 2-4-5-7-8 but converted in the 10th then needed a strike on their fill ball to push the match to extra frames. Instead, Smith left a 10-pin and the game and match went to Duke and Williams, 219-202.
Duke and Williams split $50,000 for the win, while Reyes and Smith, who beat Doug Kent and Danny Wiseman, 222-219, in the final round robin match to advance to the finals, took home $30,000. Each team earned an additional $2,500 for each round robin win as well. Denny’s PBA Tour
GEICO® PBA All-Star Shootout Hosted by Six Flags
Six Flags St. Louis
Sunday, July 22
(Norm Duke-Walter Ray Williams Jr. vs. Tony Reyes-Robert Smith. Singles wins worth one point, doubles win worth two points)
Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., def. Tony Reyes, San Bruno, Calif., 258-233
Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala Fla., def. Robert Smith, Captain Cook, Hawaii, 259-255
Duke-Williams def. Reyes-Smith, 219-202ROUND ROBIN GROUP PLAY
(Winner advances to championship round)
Dick Weber Group
Tony Reyes-Robert Smith def. Doug Kent-Danny Wiseman, 222-219FINAL STANDINGS
(Winning team earns $50,000. Second-place earns $30,000. All other teams earn $15,000. Each round robin win worth $2,500)
|Norm Duke-Walter Ray Williams Jr.||6-1||$55,000|
|Tony Reyes-Robert Smith||3-3||$37,500|
|Doug Kent-Danny Wiseman||2-1||$20,000|
|Chris Barnes-Mika Koivuniemi||2-1||$20,000|
|Jason Couch-Billy Oatman||1-2||$17,500|
|Sean Rash-Pete Weber||1-2||$17,500|
|Patrick Allen-Parker Bohn III||1-2||$17,500|
|Tommy Jones-Wes Malott||1-2||$17,500|