By Matt Cannizzaro, USBC Communications
RENO, Nev. - Chris Loschetter of Avon, Ohio, maintained his lead at the United States Bowling Congress Masters and now is in familiar territory heading into the double-elimination match-play portion of the event.
The 29-year-old right-hander, Wednesday's second-round leader, finished qualifying Thursday with a 15-game total of 3,498, an average of 233.2, to lead the field of 267 of the best professional and amateur bowlers in the world at the 78-lane National Bowling Stadium. He earned the top seed for double-elimination match play, which begins at 7 p.m. EST today.
Loschetter will be joined in match play by 62 other qualifiers and defending champion John Nolen of Grand Blanc, Mich. The 64 bowlers will compete to determine the four players who will advance to Sunday's championship round, which will be televised live on ESPN at 3 p.m. EST. The winner will take home $50,000 and a two-year Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour exemption.
"I've had a great reaction all week, and I feel like I'm throwing it well, but it's a whole new tournament now," said Loschetter, who also earned top-qualifier honors at the 2007 Masters. "At this point, I can't worry about trying to beat my opponent, no matter who it is. I'm just going to focus on keeping my shoulder loose, and if I do what I've been doing, I think I'll be tough to beat."
Loschetter is still searching for his first win on the PBA Tour. Although there is still a long road to Sunday's championship round, he is confident entering match play. His first opponent will be No. 61 Tim Mack of Indianapolis.
"My confidence was high coming in because I thought I'd bowl well on this pattern and because I've had past success in this tournament," said Loschetter, whose highest finish this season was sixth at the Shark Championship. "I played inside the first day and outside yesterday and today, so I know I have different looks. Now it's just a matter of good shotmaking and focusing on my own game."
Australian two-hander Jason Belmonte earned the No. 2 seed Thursday with a 3,421 total and was followed by Patrick Allen of Wesley Chapel, Fla. (3,404), Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas (3,377) and Ryan Shafer of Horseheads, N.Y. (3,369). First-round leader Brian Voss of Alpharetta, Ga., qualified 23rd with 3,251.
Nolen, the No. 32 seed, will open match play against former Team USA member Derek Eoff of Arlington, Texas, the No. 36 seed.
For more information on the USBC Masters, visit BOWL.com. All qualifying and match-play rounds this week are being broadcast at no charge on pba.com courtesy of the PBA's Xtra Frame live streaming service.
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Bowl with US
2010 USBC MASTERS
At National Bowling Stadium, Reno, Nev.
QUALIFYING ROUND 3
(15 games; Top 63 plus defending champion John Nolen advance)
1, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 3,498.
2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 3,421.
3, Patrick Allen, Wesley Chapel, Fla., 3,404.
4, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 3,377.
5, Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 3,369.
6, Vinny D'Ambrosio III, Staten Island, N.Y., 3,348.
7, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 3,342.
8, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 3,316.
9, (tie) Pete Weber, St. Ann, Mo., and Dino Castillo, Carrollton, Texas, 3,315.
11, Mike Scroggins, Amarillo, Texas, 3,314.
12, Mika Koivuniemi, Hartland, Mich., 3,309.
13, Rick Steelsmith, Wichita, Kan., 3,305.
14, Joe Ciccone, Buffalo, N.Y., 3,291.
15, Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., 3,282.
16, Andrew Loose, Chicago, 3,280.
17, Michael Haugen Jr., Carefree, Ariz., 3,278.
18, Jack Jurek, Lackawanna, N.Y., 3,269.
19, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala, Fla., 3,262.
20, Andrew Frawley, Australia, 3,260.
21, (tie) Mike Fagan, Patchogue, N.Y., and Andres Gomez, Colombia, 3,255.
23, Brian Voss, Alpharetta, Ga., 3,251.
24, Mike DeVaney, San Diego, 3,249.
25, Bill O'Neill, Southampton, Pa., 3,246.
26, Jeff Carter, Springfield, Ill., 3,242.
27, Andrew Cain, Phoenix, 3,236.
28, Dave Wodka, Chatsworth, Calif., 3,231.
29, Ritchie Allen, Columbia, S.C., 3,226.
30, Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 3,219.
31, Dan MacLelland, Saginaw, Mich., 3,218.
32, Tony Reyes, San Bruno, Calif., 3,217.
33, (tie) Eddie VanDaniker Jr., Essex, Md., and Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 3,211.
35, Derek Eoff, Arlington, Texas, 3,209.
36, Brian LeClair, Athens, N.Y., 3,195.
37, Lonnie Waliczek, Wichita, Kan., 3,185.
38, Steve Harman, Indianapolis, 3,184.
39, Dan Bock, Albert Lea, Minn., 3,183.
40, Jonathan Van Hees, Charlestown, R.I., 3,180.
41, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y., 3,179.
42, Kimmo Lehtonen, Finland, 3,178.
43, David Langer, Brooklyn Park, Minn., 3,175.
44, Rhino Page, Dade City, Fla., 3,173.
45, Bob Aleksinski, Hillsboro, Ore., 3,167.
46, Ronnie Horton, Christiansburg, Va., 3,162.
47, Scott Newell, Deland, Fla., 3,158.
48, John Janawicz, Winter Haven, Fla., 3,157.
49, PJ Haggerty, Clovis, Calif., 3,151.
50, John May, Lincolnton, N.C., 3,149.
51, Lennie Boresch Jr., Kenosha, Wis., 3,139.
52, Ryan Abel, Bel Aire, Kan., 3,120.
53, Erik Vermilyea, Mansfield, Texas, 3,114.
54, Daniel Miyamoto, Mililani, Hawaii, 3,113.
55, Doug Kent, Newark, N.Y., 3,110.
56, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., 3,107.
57, Mike Edwards, Tulsa, Okla., 3,106.
58, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 3,099.
59, Matthew O'Grady, South Amboy, N.J., 3,097.
60, Tim Mack, Indianapolis, 3,089.
60, Chris Warren, Grants Pass, Ore., 3,089.
62, Paul Bober, Morton Grove, Ill., 3,088.
63, Jon Brandon, Santa Clarita, Calif., 3,068.
DID NOT ADVANCE
64, Rick Bell, Clinton, Utah, 3,044., $1,400
65, Tony Yarbrough, Rogersville, Mo., 3,017., $1,200
66, George Brooks, Loveland, Colo., 3,008., $1,200
67, James Krafft, Eagle River, Alaska, 2,961., $1,200