Russell Overtakes Gomez for Pepsi PBA Elite Players Championship Lead; Top 32 Advance to Round Five

by Bill Vint November 15, 2011 12:46

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Ronnie Russell of Marion, Ind., with a 24-game total of 5,850 pins, claimed the fourth-round lead in the Pepsi PBA Elite Players Championship Tuesday by 86 pins over Colombia’s Andres Gomez at South Point Bowling Center. Both players are trying to win their first PBA Tour title.

Russell and Gomez jockeyed for the lead for 12 games Tuesday before Russell moved in front behind games of 231, 255, 226, 235, 247 and 249. Russell maintained a 243.75 average for the first 24 games of Elite Players Championship in overcoming Gomez’s 64-pin third-round lead.

“Round to round it seems like we need to move left on the lanes quicker and I’ve been able to stay on top of those changes in conditions with my adjustments and equipment,” Russell said. “There’s more friction on the conditions we’re bowling on now and that’s a situation I’m more comfortable with. I just need to continue to make good shots, not press and finish off each round.”

“I’m doing well on the medium length patterns, which is generally where I have my best success,” Gomez said. “The two finals I’ve made have been on medium patterns and I’m usually confident I can finish in the top 10 whenever we bowl on those conditions.”

Russell and Gomez had previously qualified for the Carmen Salvino Classic finals. Gomez also has qualified for the PBA World Championship finals.

The Pepsi PBA Elite Players Championship began with an exclusive field of 49 PBA Tour exempt players. The field has been reduced to the top 32 for a final six-game qualifying round Wednesday morning.

After round five, the top 16 players based on 30 games will advance to the Eliminator Round of 16 Wednesday afternoon where they will compete for four spots in the Elite Players Championship finals. The same 16 players will compose the field for the Lumber Liquidators Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship which will be contested on Sunday as part of a four-day PBA World Series of Bowling television extravaganza at South Point.

Beginning Thursday at 5:30 p.m. Pacific, the PBA will produce the first of 14 television shows for delayed telecast on ESPN in a special arena in South Point’s Exhibition Hall A. Admission is free for all of the shows.

PEPSI PBA ELITE PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP
South Point Bowling Center, Las Vegas, Nov. 15

Round Four (after 24 games; top 32 advance to Round Five)

1, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., 5,850.
2, Andres Gomez, Colombia, 5,764.
3, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 5,761.
4, Martin Larsen, Sweden, 5,688.
5, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 5,679.
6, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 5,638.
7, Mike Fagan, Dallas, 5,558.
8, Bill O'Neill, Southampton, Pa., 5,536.
9, Pete Weber, St. Ann, Mo., 5,519.
10, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 5,512.
11, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y., 5,511.
12, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., 5,487.
13, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 5,479.
14, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 5,475.
15, Dan MacLelland, Saginaw, Mich., 5,452.
16, Mike DeVaney, Murrieta, Calif., 5,451.
17, Jason Couch, Clermont, Fla., 5,446.
18 (tie), Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., and Brian Kretzer, Dayton, Ohio, 5,403.
20, Mika Koivuniemi, Hartland, Mich., 5,402.
21, Mike Scroggins, Amarillo, Texas, 5,345.
22, Patrick Allen, Baltimore, 5,344.
23, Dino Castillo, Carrollton, Texas, 5,342.
24, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala, Fla., 5,325.
25 (tie), Michael Haugen Jr., Carefree, Ariz., and Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 5,324.
27, Steve Jaros, Yorkville, Ill., 5,320.
28, Tyler Jensen, Ft. Worth, Texas, 5,308.
29, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 5,297.
30, Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 5,295.
31, Rhino Page, Dade City, Fla., 5,294.
32, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 5,266.

Did not advance:
33, Osku Palermaa, Finland, 5,240, $2,150.
34, Scott Norton, Costa Mesa, Calif., 5,231, $2,140.
35, Nathan Bohr, Wichita, Kan., 5,210, $2,130.
36, Kelly Kulick, Union, N.J., 5,201, $2,120.
37, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 5,200, $2,110.
38, Danny Wiseman, Baltimore, 5,193, $2,100.
39, Chris Warren, Grants Pass, Ore., 5,191, $2,090.
40, Joe Ciccone, Buffalo, N.Y., 5,190, $2,080.
41, Brian Valenta, Lockport, Ill., 5,163, $2,070.
42, Tom Hess, Urbandale, Iowa, 5,156, $2,060.
43, Jack Jurek, Lackawanna, N.Y., 5,150, $2,050.
44, Paul Gibson, Brunswick, Ohio, 5,022, $2,040.
45, Wayne Garber, Modesto, Calif., 5,013, $2,030.
46, Johnathan Bower, Middletown, Pa., 4,978, $2,020.
47, Kerry Painter, Henderson, Nev., 4,804, $2,010.
48, Lonnie Waliczek, Wichita, Kan., 4,717, $2,000.
49, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., withdrew, $2,000.

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