Ken Simard and Missy Bellinder both took advantage of the week off to refocus their games as each finished atop their respective fields in Thursday’s qualifying of the CLR Carmen Salvino Scorpion Championship at Brunswick Zone Hawthorn, the sixth stop on the Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour.
Simard of Greenville, S.C. was fourth after the first seven game block with 1,708 pins, and he continued to dominate in the second block adding 1,792 pins for a total score of 3500, plus-700, averaging 250 over the 14 games. Simard finished with a 93 pin lead over second-place Wes Malott of Argyle, Texas who finished with a score of 3,378.
“I had a great cross, good reaction and had some great bowling balls,” Simard said. “The week off really helped. I had a 30 minute conversation with Norm Duke in Taylor and he helped me change my grip and work on some things with my arm swing. Tomorrow I just will try to keep the same rhythm and take it one game at a time.”
Local favorite Robert Spigner of Vernon Hills, Ill. also advanced to the Round of 32 match play, finishing eighth in qualifying with a score of 3,329.
Australian Jason Belmonte who entered the tournament via a Commissioner’s Exemption, also advanced, finishing 24th with a score of 3,241.
Also of note, Dino Castillo, Mika Koivuniemi, Doug Kent, Simard and Tommy Delutz Jr. all shot 300 games during qualifying. All but Castillo advanced to Friday’s play. The top 32 men and top 10 women advanced.
Bellinder, who had held a 46 point lead after the first block over the 16-player field, managed to hold off Michelle Feldman of Auburn, N.Y. who outscored Bellinder in the second block, 1752-1713. Bellinder finished the day with 3,352 pins, -plus 552, averaging 239.43 while Feldman was just 14 pins behind with a score of 3,338.
“I was just trying to keep up with Michelle (Feldman) all day,” said Bellinder who bowled on the pair next to Feldman all day. “Going into today, I just wanted to come out and have fun. The break helped tremendously as I was able to relax and refocus.”
Brenda Mack of Indianapolis, Ind. and Wendy Macpherson of Henderson, Nev. tied for the 10th and final spot which forced a one-game roll-off in which Mack defeated Macpherson, 242-193 to advance.
Friday’s men’s competition continues with nine games of round-robin match play beginning at 11 a.m. cutting the field to the top 16. The remaining 16 will return at 6 p.m. for nine more games of round-robin match play, to decide the final four. The women’s field will return at 6 p.m. for nine games of round-robin match play, until the final two are decided. The four men and two women will advance to Sunday’s live televised finals on ESPN at 1 p.m. ET.
CLR Carmen Salvino Scorpion Championship Format:
The field of 64 players will bowl two, 7-game qualifying rounds for a total of 14 games on Thursday, Nov. 27 in which the top 32 players advance to match play. Bowlers making the cut return on Friday morning, Nov. 28 for the first nine games of an 18 game round robin match play schedule. The field will then be cut to the top 16 players who will return on Friday evening for the second round of match play competition. At the conclusion of match play, the top four finalists will advance to stepladder competition, i.e. No. 4 vs. No. 3, winner vs. No. 2, winner vs. No. 1 in the championship match, aired live on ESPN on Sunday, Nov. 30 at Noon CT/1 p.m. ET.
PBA Women’s Series Format
The field of 16 players will bowl two, 7-game qualifying rounds for a total of 14 games on Thursday, Nov. 27 in which the top 10 players advance to match play. Bowlers making the cut return on Friday evening, Nov. 28 for nine games of round robin match play competition. At the conclusion of match play, the top two finalists will compete in the championship match on Sunday, Nov. 30, aired live on ESPN at Noon CT/1 p.m. ET.