Five-time Lumber Liquidators Professional Bowlers Association Tour titlist Mike Scroggins of Amarillo, Texas, averaged 229.14 after the Round of 33 Friday to lead 16 players who will advance to elimination rounds in the Professional Bowlers Association Don Johnson Buckeye State Eliminator at Sequoia Pro Bowl.
With a 28-game 6,416 pinfall, Scroggins led qualifying by 10-pins over second place Bill O’Neill of Southampton, Pa., who led after Thursday’s competition.
“I was having some arm swing problems which I worked out after all the games we bowled last week (in the Etonic Marathon Open),” said the 44-year-old Scroggins, who is looking for his first Tour win this season. “I can’t believe I took the lead.”
The 16 remaining players will now compete in eliminator rounds beginning on Saturday where they will be grouped in foursomes based on their 28-game pinfall. Each elimination round will consist of two games with the lowest two-game pinfall in each group eliminated from the tournament. For the ESPN finals, which will take place Sunday at 1 p.m. Eastern, four players will bowl one game on the same pair with the low scorer eliminated and so on until the final two survivors bowl for the title.
In addition to the unique format, players have to navigate through the Tour’s demanding Scorpion (left lane) and Viper (right lane) conditions in the eliminator rounds, putting a premium on making accurate lane and ball adjustments.
Scroggins has come close to victory this season with two second place finishes and four television appearances.
“I’m feeling pretty confident. I was pretty consistent on both patterns, maybe 2-3 pins higher on the Scorpion pattern,” the left-handed Scroggins added. “I think there’s a huge advantage on my side, but I have twisters in my foursome. They are going to be able to open up the lanes.”
The Buckeye State Eliminator is part of the PBA’s 50th Anniversary season “Extreme Swing,” which also includes the, GEICO Plastic Ball Championship, Ultimate Scoring Championship, Etonic Marathon Open, and the GoRVing Match Play Championship. The creative format events are meant to test the greatest bowlers in the world in different areas of the game, provide television audiences with a fresh look while providing education on pertinent aspects of the game.
“My greatest asset and my biggest liability is to find the right combination of moves to win, said last year’s Columbus winner Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas who was 10th after Friday’s competition. “However, if I don’t pick the right combination early I lose. One good or bad break can mean more than the entire body of work in the games we bowled.”
LUMBER LIQUIDATORS PBA TOUR
Don Johnson Buckeye State Eliminator
Sequoia Pro Bowl – Columbus, Ohio
Round of 33 Results After 28 games (Name, Hometown, Pinfall, Earnings for Non-Qualifiers)
Top 16 Advance
1, Mike Scroggins, Amarillo, Texas, 6,416
2, Bill O'Neill, Southampton, Pa., 6,406
3, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 6,300
4, Joe Bailey, Pittsburgh, 6,298
5, Edward VanDaniker Jr., Essex, Md., 6,187
6, Mika Koivuniemi, Hartland, Mich., 6,170
7, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 6,166
8, Michael Fagan, Patchogue, N.Y., 6,138
9, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 6,132
10, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 6,128
11, Ritchie Allen, Columbia, S.C., 6,119
12, Rhino Page, Topeka, Kan., 6,117
13, Mike DeVaney, San Diego, 6,107
14, Danny Wiseman, Baltimore, 6,071
15, Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., 6,065
16, Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 6,043
17, Dino Castillo, Carrollton, Texas, 6,035, $2,200
18, Nathan Bohr, Wichita, Kan., 6,033, $2,200
19, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 6,024, $2,200
20, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 6,016, $2,200
21, Sean Rash, Wichita, Kan., 5,998, $2,200
22, Ronnie Russell, Indianapolis, 5,993, $2,200
23, Patrick Allen, Wesley Chapel, Fla., 5,990, $2,200
24, Pete Weber, St. Ann, Mo., 5,979, $2,200
25, Steve Harman, Indianapolis, 5,977, $2,200
26, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala, Fla., 5,973, $2,200
27, Tony Reyes, San Bruno, Calif., 5,957, $2,200
28, Jason Lundquist, Delaware Water Gap, Pa., 5,944, $2,200
29, Michael Machuga, Erie, Pa., 5,943, $2,200
30, Doug Kent, Newark, N.Y., 5,929, $2,200
30, Scott Newell, Deland, Fla., 5,929, $2,200
32, Brian Kretzer, Dayton, Ohio, 5,789, $2,200
33, Terrance Reeves, Valrico, Fla., 5,691, $1,800