Two GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX PBA Tour Finals Back-to-Back This Sunday on ESPN Beginning at 1 p.m. ET

by Jerry Schneider December 13, 2017 08:44

RENO, Nev. - The Go Bowling! PBA Tour schedule for 2017 continues with doubleheader action Sunday on ESPN beginning at 1 p.m. ET featuring the PBA Chameleon Championship presented by Reno Tahoe followed by the PBA Shark Championship presented by Xtra Frame. The finals are the first two animal pattern events of the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX presented by Eldorado Resorts Reno Properties.

USBC Hall of Famer and three-time reigning PWBA Player of the Year Liz Johnson, and PBA Tour champions Wes Malott, Anthony Pepe and Tom Smallwood swept their respective best-of-three-game Round of 8 matches to advance to Sunday’s Chameleon final at the National Bowling Stadium.

The finals will use a format where the four finalists simultaneously bowl one game on the same pair of lanes with the top two scorers advancing to a head-to-head final match.

Johnson, a native of western New York who now lives in Palatine, Ill., is a PBA regional champion, who will make a record third PBA Tour television appearance. Her best finish was second in the 2005 Banquet Open when she became the first woman to qualify for a PBA Tour national television final. She also owns a record 10 PWBA Tour major titles. She will be trying to join Kelly Kulick, the 2010 PBA Tournament of Champions winner, as the only women to win a PBA Tour title.

Malott, a 10-time Tour winner from Pflugerville, Texas, will be trying for his first win of the season. Pepe, of Elmhurst, N.Y., won his only PBA Tour title in the 2014 Cheetah Championship, and Smallwood, of Saginaw, Mich., will be trying for his third Tour title.

For detailed tournament notes of the Chameleon Championship click on https://www.pba.com/content/files/downloads/2017%20WSOB%20Chameleon%20TV%20Notes.pdf

For the Shark Championship, two PBA Tour champions and two players making their first telecast appearances will face off at 2 p.m.

Four-time PBA Tour winner Marshall Kent of Yakima, Wash., and two-time winner Tom Daugherty of Riverview, Fla., both swept their best-of-three matches to advance to the finals. Kent will be trying for his third win of the 2017 season and Daugherty his first.

Charlie Brown Jr. of Grandville, Mich., a 36-year-old rookie bowling in his first PBA Tour event, swept Shota Kawazoe of Japan, 2-0 in the Round of 8, to make his first PBA Tour telecast.

Bowling in his fourth World Series of Bowling, England’s Richie Teece finally broke through to make his first Tour telecast by beating Smallwood, 2-1 in the Round of 8.

WSOB IX continues with back-to-back telecasts on ESPN of the PBA Cheetah Championship presented by PBA Bowling Challenge Mobile Game and the Pepsi PBA Scorpion Championship presented by GoBowling.com on Dec. 24 beginning at 1 p.m. EST and the PBA World Championship Dec. 31 at 1 p.m. WSOB IX coverage concludes with World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s Finals presented by PBA on Jan. 7 at 1 p.m.

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PBA Returns to CBS Sports Network in with PBA Tour Finals from Historic Thunderbowl Lanes in Detroit

by Bill Vint December 11, 2017 14:17

CHICAGO – Eight elite Professional Bowlers Association stars who have dominated PBA’s earnings chart over a span of more than two years will compete in the historic Thunderbowl Lanes arena in Allen Park, Mich., May 5-6, in the second edition of the PBA Tour Finals.

The special event marks PBA’s return to CBS Sports Network for a series of five two-hour prime-time telecasts as part of the 2017-18 Go Bowling! PBA Tour schedule.

As the 2017 PBA Tour season comes to a close, leading the list of qualifiers for the 2018 event, based on total PBA Tour earnings for 2016 and 2017 as of Nov. 1, are defending champion EJ Tackett of Huntington, Ind., followed by Australia’s Jason Belmonte; Anthony Simonsen of Austin, Texas; Jesper Svensson, Sweden; Dom Barrett, England; Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C.; Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., and Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill.

In 2017, Tackett won the inaugural PBA Tour Finals in Orlando, Fla., with a 666-628 victory over Belmonte.

The 2018 PBA Tour Finals field will be based on total earnings for 2016, 2017 and early 2018, concluding with the PBA Xtra Frame Maine Shootout April 17-18 at Bayside Bowl in Portland, Maine. Other events from late 2017 and early 2018 that will impact the earnings list include all GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX events, the DHC PBA Japan Invitational, PBA Tournament of Champions, Go Bowling! PBA 60th Anniversary Classic, Barbasol PBA Players Championship, Mark Roth/Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship presented by BowlerX, USBC Masters and the Xtra Frame PBA Maine Shootout.

Details regarding the PBA Tour Finals format will be announced. At stake will be a $30,000 first prize and a PBA Tour title

The Finals will be taped for television by CBS Sports Network. Telecast dates and times will be announced later. The 10 hours of nationally-televised coverage will conclude the Go Bowling! PBA Tour series which began with the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX, presented by Eldorado Resorts Reno Properties, in December.

PRELIMINARY 2018 PBA TOUR FINALS QUALIFIERS’ LIST
(Top 20 in composite PBA Tour earnings for 2016 and 2017, as of Nov. 1, 2017)
1, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., $342,808 .
2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, $241,757 .
3, Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas, $210,374.
4, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, $202,696. 
5, Dom Barrett, England, $187,360.
6, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., $159,622. 
7, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., $157,675. 
8, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., $132,772. 
9, Francois Lavoie, Canada, $109,255. 
10, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., $102,790. 
11, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, $99,283. 
12, Martin Larsen, Sweden, $99,265. 
13, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y., $96,880. 
14, Bill O'Neill, Langhorne, Pa., $92,575. 
15, Tom Daugherty, Riverview, Fla., $85,800. 
16, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., $85,057. 
17, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, $84,237. 
18, Mitch Beasley, Clarksville, Tenn., $77,735. 
19, Jason Sterner, Cocoa Beach, Fla., $70,195. 
20, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., $70,065.

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U.S. Stars Defeat International Standouts to Successfully Defend USA vs. The World Team Title at WSOB IX

by Jerry Schneider December 10, 2017 10:56

RENO, Nev. - The five leading American qualifiers in PBA World Championship pinfall during the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX presented by Eldorado Resorts Reno Properties combined for 20 clean frames and 18 strikes in 24 attempts to sweep the best-of-two-game USA vs. The World team competition, kicking off ESPN’s coverage of the 2017-18 Go Bowling! PBA Tour schedule Sunday.

The USA team, captained by PBA Hall of Famer and 22-time PBA Tour champion Marshall Holman, included PBA Tour champions Kyle Troup, Bill O’Neill, Ryan Ciminelli, Tom Smallwood and PBA regional winner Matt McNiel. Making up The World team, captained by England’s Stuart Williams, were PBA Tour winners Jason Belmonte of Australia, Jesper Svensson of Sweden, Dom Barrett of England, Thomas Larsen of Denmark and 20-year-old newcomer Rafiq Ismail of Malaysia.

In what could be considered the all-star event of WSOB IX, players earned their spots on their respective teams based on their finishing positions after 40 games of qualifying in the PBA Chameleon Championship presented by Reno Tahoe, Shark Championship presented by Xtra Frame, Cheetah Championship presented by PBA Challenge Mobile Game and Pepsi Scorpion Championship presented by GoBowling.com. 

In the first Baker format match contested at the National Bowling Stadium, where each player bowls two frames to combine for one score, the U.S. team took control with a 226-213 win when the World team couldn’t catch up after a missed 1-2-4-6-10 washout in the fifth frame by Barrett.

USA vs. The WorldThe USA completely dominated game two, combining for a 279 while The World managed only 191. Troup, O’Neill, McNiel and Ciminelli struck in the first four frames. Smallwood then converted a 10-pin spare in the fifth frame before the team closed out the victory with a string of seven consecutive strikes.

“We may have been the underdogs on paper but all these guys had the qualities you need to contribute to a great team effort,” said Holman. “I had a good idea of what lineup would work and went with my first instinct, but in reality I could have put any lineup out there and we would have been in good shape.”

The USA vs. The World event was conducted on the 42-foot PBA Earl Anthony lane condition which was a neutral condition the players had not competed on in WSOB IX.

“In Baker team competition, especially on a new lane condition, communication is key,” said O’Neill, an eight-time PBA Tour winner. “With everyone’s break point being so different it can be difficult to get the reads so it was important that we were on the same page.

“Marshall put together a good lineup and then it was up to us to take it from there,” O’Neill added. “I think there was only one frame where we didn’t hit the pocket and we had a high strike percentage so the rest took care of itself.”

In 2016, the USA (Mitch Beasley, BJ Moore, Matt O’Grady, Dick Allen, EJ Tackett) beat The World (Sam Cooley, Barrett, Arturo Quintero, Francois Lavoie, Martin Larsen) in a one-frame roll-off after each team won one game.

WSOB IX action continues on ESPN Sunday, Dec. 17 with the Chameleon Championship at 1 p.m. ET followed immediately by the Shark Championship at 2 p.m.

USA vs. THE WORLD TEAM CHALLENGE

National Bowling Stadium Reno, Nev. (televised Sunday on ESPN)

(Best-of-two-game Baker format match)

Match One: USA (Kyle Troup, Bill O’Neill, Ryan Ciminelli, Matt NcNiel, Tom Smallwood) def. The World (Jason Belmonte, Jesper Svensson, Dom Barrett, Thomas Larsen, Rafiq Ismail), 226-213.

Match Two: USA def. The World, 279-191.

# # #

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PBA Spare Shots: DHC Adds Four PBA Stars to 2018 DHC PBA Japan Invitational Field

by Bill Vint December 8, 2017 11:28

Title sponsor DHC, a major Japanese skin care product company, has invited four additional PBA stars – including 2016 PBA Rookie of the Year Francois Lavoie (featured photo), PBA Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III and incoming PBA Hall of Famer Chris Barnes, and PBA women’s pioneer Liz Johnson – to the field for the 2018 DHC PBA Japan Invitational that will be held Jan. 26-28 at Tokyo Port Bowl.

The tournament, which will be covered in its entirety by PBA’s online bowling channel, Xtra Frame, also will include defending champion EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind.; Jason Belmonte, Australia; Jesper Svensson, Sweden; Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash.; Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla.; Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y.; Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas; Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill.; Yannaphon Larpapharat, Thailand; Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., Dom Barrett, England, and a Korea PBA member to be announced.

First prize in the event will be $45,000 and a PBA Tour title, if the winner is a PBA member.

CONCRETE SOFTWARE ISSUES “BEAT THE CHEETAH CHAMPION” CHALLENGE

How good are your virtual bowling skills? In a renewal of a competition introduced in 2016, Concrete Software, creator of the PBA Bowling Challenge Mobile Game, has issued a “Cheetah Challenge” in conjunction with the PBA Cheetah Championship finals, presented by PBA Bowling Challenge Mobile Game.

The rules are simple: if you haven’t already done so, download the free PBA Bowling Challenge app at Google Play or the Apple App store. Then select the "Limited Tournament" button on the landing page of the app to enter the tournament. “Bowl” one virtual game and if your game score beats the actual PBA Cheetah Championship winner’s score, you will be automatically entered into a drawing to win 5,000 Gold Pins (in-game currency) and a pin signed by the Cheetah champion. Multiple entries are allowed.

The sweepstakes will begin at 1 a.m. EST on Dec. 24 and end at 12:59 p.m. on Jan. 2.

Here is a link the official rules: http://bit.ly/PBA_OfficialRules.

Speaking of Concrete Software’s PBA Bowling Challenge Mobile Game, this week marked the addition of a new element to capture the excitement of the PBA League program. The PBA Bowling Challenge game is adding a new PBA League venue on a weekly schedule, beginning today with the debut of the Dallas Strikers venue.

Everyone with a mobile device is invited to join the fun. The PBA Bowling Challenge Mobile Game app is a free download at Google Play and Apple App stores. Use these links: Google Play: http://bit.ly/PBABowlingChallengeAnd or Apple App Store: http://bit.ly/PBABowlingChallengeiOS

PBA 60TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION/HALL OF FAME DINNER TICKETS ON SALE

Tickets are now on sale for PBA’s 60th Anniversary Celebration Dinner, including PBA’s 2017 Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, on Saturday, Feb. 17, at the Marriott North in Indianapolis. Tickets, which include a cocktail hour with hors d'oeuvres and open bar, are available for $125 (plus service fee) through the “Tickets” link on pba.com (https://www.pba.com/Tickets).

In addition to a special PBA 60th Anniversary Celebration and the inductions of Chris Barnes, Ron Mohr and the late Indianapolis proprietor Don Mitchell into the PBA Hall of Fame, the PBA will recognize the 2017 GEICO PBA Chris Schenkel Player of the Year, Harry Golden PBA Rookie of the Year, Steve Nagy Sportsmanship Award winner and the Tony Reyes Memorial Community Service Award winner. The program begins at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail hour and “red carpet” reception followed by dinner at 7:30 p.m. The public is invited.

Advance tickets also are available at the same website address for the Go Bowling! PBA 60th Anniversary Classic ESPN finals at Woodland Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 18, at 1 p.m. ET. General admission tickets for other rounds of the event will be available at the door.

Reservations for the tournament pro-am at Woodland Bowl are being accepted by the host center. The pro-am, for adults and youth bowlers, will be held on Saturday, Feb. 17, at noon and 2:30 p.m. Participating bowlers will have the option of a standard or “upgrade” to include a Brunswick Vintage Inferno bowling ball. For more information, call Woodland Bowl at 317-844-4099.

PBA STARS WIN WORLD BOWLING TEAM GOLD MEDAL FOR U.S.; LAVOIE TOPS MASTERS

PBA stars, domestically and internationally, earned gold medals as the World Bowling Men’s World Championships wrapped up at South Point Bowling Plaza Tuesday, including a gold medal performance in the five-man team event by Chris Barnes, Jakob Butturff, Marshall Kent, Tommy Jones, Chris Via and AJ Johnson who defeated Chinese Taipei in the best-of-three-game finale, 210-189 and 200-180.

Earlier in the event, Barnes and Jones teamed up to win men’s doubles for Team USA.

Francois Lavoie, PBA’s 2016 Rookie of the Year, won the men’s Masters title to close the multi-event championships, defeating Taipei’s Zu Zhe-Jia, 247-206, 216-199, in the gold medal match.

In the World Bowling Women’s World Championships, current and/or former PBA members Shannon O’Keefe, Kelly Kulick and Danielle McEwan won the women’s trios gold medal, Shalin Zulkifli helped Malaysia win the women’s team title, and McEwan won the women’s all-events gold medal. For complete World Bowling Championships results, visit worldbowling.org.

XTRA FRAME HOLIDAY SALE: SAVE $10 ON “XF SEASON TICKET”

For the bowler in your family who has everything, a perfect Christmas gift might be a full-year of PBA Xtra Frame access, available exclusive Dec. 15-31 for the holiday discount price of only $54.99.

That’s just over $1 a week for 12 months of live streaming of PBA Tour action, access to a great library of past PBA Tour events and telecasts plus player interviews, bowling instruction, and more.

All you have to do is visit xtraframe.tv between 8 a.m. EST on Dec. 15 and 11:59 p.m. EST on Dec. 31 and enter “PBAHOLIDAY17” in the promo code box to secure the $10 discount price.

PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: LOSCHETTER, KRETZER TEAM UP FOR DOUBLES TITLE

Ohio teammates Chris Loschetter of Avon and Brian Kretzer of Dayton defeated Dick Allen of Columbia, S.C., and Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Fla., 258-230, to win the PBA/PBA50 Decker Appraisal Services Baker Doubles title presented by Hammer Sunday at Valley Lanes in Harrisonburg, Va.

Loschetter and Kretzer qualified fourth for the stepladder finals and defeated Virginia’s Chris Bolosan of Hampton and Troy McKinney of Yorktown, 256-137, to start the four-team stepladder finals. They then eliminated fellow Ohioans Joe Hostetler of Louisville and Dick Gran of Hartville, 247-236, to advance to the title match.

The win marked Loschetter’s 15th in PBA Regional competition and Kretzer’s 23rd in standard and PBA50 regionals. The Loschetter/Kretzer team earned $3,600.

Daniel Dunleavy of Staten Island, N.Y., defeated Andrew Suscreba of Clifton, N.J., 246-233, to win the PBA MJK Pro Shop/Knob Hill Eastern Challenge presented by Brunswick on Saturday in Manalapan, N.J. PBA Challenge events are open to any member or non-member who has never won a PBA event.

Dunleavy, a 36-year-old non-member who has bowled frequently for several seasons, rolled a strike in the 10th frame to earn the win. Suscreba, who had missed a single pin spare early in the championship match, had struck out in his half of the 10th frame to force Dunleavy to strike. Dunleavy earned $1,700 for the win, but does not receive credit for a PBA Regional title because he is a non-member.

In the semifinal matches, Dunleavy edged Terry Thompson Jr. of Copiague, N.Y., 225-224, when Thompson threw a seven-count with his the fill ball. Suscreba defeated rookie Brent Tishuk of Belvidere, N.J., 248-184, in the other semifinal match.

● The Dec. 8-10 PBA Regional calendar includes the Petro TA South Open at Beltline Lanes in Columbia, S.C.. and the McKinley Lanes Central/East Challenge for non-championships in Niles, Ohio.

● Closing out the PBA’s pre-holiday regional season schedule will be the PBA/PBA50 Houston Southwest Open Doubles presented by Bowling Dynamix at Emerald Bowl in Houston, Texas.

● For complete PBA Regional schedules, rules and entry information, visit pba.com, open the “schedules” tab and click on PBA Regional Tours to find the event(s) in your area…and remember, you can follow “live scoring” for all PBA Regional events on pba.com (easily accessible for Apple device users using the new PBA app).

QUICK NOTES:

● Shawn Switzer of Canyon Country, Calif., will receive a new Brunswick ball, Stacey Finnigan of Jordan, N.Y., has won a new high-performance ball from DV8, and Mark Wilks of Greenwell Springs, La., a new high-performance MOTIV ball as November sweepstakes prizes for subscribing to Xtra Frame. The monthly sweepstakes is sponsored by the respective PBA Product Registered partners. Monthly winners are selected from among new Xtra Frame subscribers, who are automatically entered when they enroll as a monthly or Xtra Frame Season Ticket (full year) subscriber.

Francois Lavoie shares his views about his historic 300 game in the 2016 U.S. Open finals in a PBA Player’s Perspective now available on PBA’s YouTube channel. To stay current with all of the latest additions to PBA’s YouTube channel, be sure to “subscribe” when you visit YouTube.

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GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX’s ESPN Coverage Kicks Off Sunday with USA vs. The World Team Challenge

by Jerry Schneider December 6, 2017 08:26

RENO, Nev. - The five leading American players and the five top international players in PBA World Championship qualifying during the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX presented by Eldorado Resorts Reno Properties will face off in the second USA vs. The World team competition from the National Bowling Stadium on ESPN Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, kicking off ESPN’s coverage of the 2017-18 Go Bowling! PBA Tour.

The USA team, captained by PBA Hall of Famer and 22-time Tour champion Marshall Holman, includes PBA Tour champions Kyle Troup, Bill O’Neill, Ryan Ciminelli, Tom Smallwood and PBA regional winner Matt McNiel. Making up The World team, captained by England’s Stuart Williams, are PBA Tour international standouts Jason Belmonte of Australia, Jesper Svensson of Sweden, Dom Barrett of England, Thomas Larsen of Denmark and newcomer Rafiq Ismail of Malaysia.

In what could be considered the all-star event of WSOB IX, players earned their spots on their respective teams based on their finishing positions after a combined 40 games of qualifying in the PBA Chameleon Championship presented by Reno Tahoe, PBA Shark Championship presented by Xtra Frame, PBA Cheetah Championship presented by PBA Challenge Mobile Game and Pepsi PBA Scorpion Championship presented by GoBowling.com.

For in-depth event stats click on https://www.pba.com/content/files/downloads/2017%20USA%20vs%20World%20TV%20Notes.pdf

The teams will compete in a best-of-two-game Baker format final with a sudden-death roll-off should the teams tie after two games.

The U.S. team will try to defend its title from WSOB VIII when the USA (Mitch Beasley, BJ Moore, Matt O’Grady, Dick Allen, EJ Tackett) beat The World (Sam Cooley, Barrett, Arturo Quintero, Francois Lavoie, Martin Larsen) in a one-frame roll-off after each team won one game.

WSOB IX continues with back-to-back telecasts on ESPN of the Chameleon Championship and Shark Championship Sunday, Dec. 17 beginning at 1 p.m. ET, followed by the Cheetah Championship and Scorpion Championship Dec. 24 at 1 p.m., PBA World Championship Dec. 31 at 1 p.m. and wrapping up with World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s finals presented by PBA Jan. 7 at 1 p.m.

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