SHAWNEE, Okla. – Top qualifier Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa., brought the Professional Bowlers Association Tour’s Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing to a near-perfect close, cruising past Sean Rash of Montgomery, Ill., to win the King of the Swing finale, 245-181, at the Grand Event Center.
The concluding event in Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort PBA Summer Swing aired Tuesday on CBS Sports Network. The Oklahoma’s Grand Casino Resort King of the Swing was contested on the 52-foot Badger lane condition, selected by O’Neill as the Summer Swing points leader. O’Neill won the PBA Badger Open earlier in the swing.
The final match was decided early. O’Neill struck on eight of his first nine shots and held a 55-pin lead after five frames when Rash failed to convert the 4-7-9-10 split in his fifth frame. After a second split and open by Rash in the seventh frame, O’Neill had the match locked up. O’Neill’s open in the 10th frame was meaningless.
The King of the Swing was a special event. No PBA Tour title was awarded, but O’Neill took home $10,000 and a lot of restored confidence.
“I’ve been working hard. I’ve had some struggles over the past couple of years, but I’ve tried to stay mentally right,” he said. “Any time you win it’s a boost to your confidence, but to win the way I did here by doubling in the 10th on a really difficult condition (to win the Badger Open), and bowling a really good game today really helps. You don’t often bowl a guy like Sean and have the match closed out by the eighth or ninth frame.
“I’m just really happy overall,” O’Neill said with a smile. “It may not be an official PBA title, but I got a trophy and it’s a title in my heart.”
In the first match, Tommy Jones of Simpsonville, S.C., who earned the “wild card” berth as the player with the most Summer Swing points without winning a title, eliminated Bear Open champion Ronnie Russell of Marion, Ind., 236-206, in a contest that featured seven strikes by Jones and five 10 pins sandwiched between strikes by Russell.
Rash, the Wolf Open winner, started match two with six strikes to take a 33-pin lead over Jones and won handily, 257-212. Jones’ rally was cut short when he left the 4-9 split in the ninth frame and failed to convert.
In the semifinal match, Oklahoma Open winner Jason Belmonte of Australia had a chance to eliminate Rash with two strikes in the 10th frame, but he left a 10 pin on his first ball and missed the spare. Rash won, 236-224, and advanced to the championship match.
The PBA Tour will return to action Oct. 24-Nov. 2 when South Point Hotel, Casino and Bowling Center in Las Vegas hosts PBA World Series of Bowling VI, a multi-event competition featuring the PBA Cheetah, Scorpion, Chameleon and Viper Championships, the PBA World Championship, the World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s Finals, and a new PBA Champion’s Challenge special event. In the interim, PBA players will compete in World Bowling-PBA International Tour’s World Bowling Tour Thailand in Bangkok, Aug. 18-25.
CBS Sports Network is available across the country through local cable, video and telco providers and via satellite on DirecTV Channel 221 and Dish Network Channel 158. For more information, including a full programming schedule and how to get CBS Sports Network, go to www.cbssportsnetwork.com.
A King of the Swing post-game show is available on PBA’s subscription-based online bowling channel, Xtra Frame and on PBA’s YouTube page. The complete telecasts of all five Summer Swing events are archived on Xtra Frame seven days after the original air date.
2014 OKLAHOMA’S GRAND CASINO RESORT KING OF THE SWING
Grand Casino Resort Event Center, Shawnee, Okla.
Final Standings: 1, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., $10,000. 2, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., $5,000. 3, Jason Belmonte, Australia, $4,000. 4, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., $3,000. 5, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., $2,000.
Playoff Results: Match One – Jones def. Russell, 236-206. Match Two – Rash def. Jones, 257-212. Semifinal Match – Rash def. Belmonte, 236-224. Championship – O’Neill def. Rash, 245-181.