Texas Two-Hander Anthony Simonsen Set to Defend Title in PBA Xtra Frame Wilmington Open

by Bill Vint May 14, 2018 09:16

WILMINGTON, N.C. – Anthony Simonsen, a 21-year-old two-handed competitor from Austin, Texas, will defend his Professional Bowlers Association’s Xtra Frame Wilmington Open title against a sold-out field of established PBA champions, future stars and top-caliber amateur bowlers May 19-20 at Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center.

Simonsen, who captured his third career title with a 224-177 victory over Rhino Page of Orlando, Fla., in the inaugural Wilmington Open a year ago, will try to repeat against a world-class field of bowling talent including 2018 PBA Tournament of Champions winner Matt O’Grady of Rahway, N.J., and USBC Masters champ Andrew Anderson of Holly, Mich.; PBA Hall of Famer Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Fla., and PBA Tour title winners including Dick Allen, Ryan Ciminelli, Tom Daugherty, Graham Fach, Tommy Jones, Marshall Kent, Chris Loschetter, Bill O’Neill, Connor Pickford, Matt Sanders and Richie Teece.

The Wilmington Open, like all eight PBA Xtra Frame Tour events in 2018, is part of the Go Bowling! PBA Tour. All Xtra Frame events will be covered live, from first ball to last, by PBA’s live streaming service. PBA created the online Xtra Frame Tour in 2014 to supplement its nationally-televised events. The growing popularity of live streaming events enables more fans around the world to watch the world’s greatest bowlers compete for a PBA Tour title.

Competition begins on Saturday, May 19 with eight-game qualifying squads at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. ET. After eight games, the top one-third of the field will advance to a four-game cashers round Sunday at 9 a.m. After 12 games, the top 16 will bowl another three-game round at 11:30 a.m., and after 15 games, the top eight will bowl two more qualifying games at 1:30 p.m. to determine the four bowlers who will advance to the stepladder finals at 3 p.m. At stake is a $10,000 first prize and a PBA Tour title if the winner is a PBA member.

A practice session is scheduled for 4 p.m. Friday and a pro-am where grassroots amateur bowlers can bowl with the pros will be conducted at 6:30 p.m.  For tournament pro-am and admission information contact Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center at (910) 452-5455.

For Xtra Frame subscriptions, visit xtraframe.tv. Subscriptions are available for three days ($3.99), 30 days ($7.99) or for a full year at a cost of about $1.25 per week.

Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center, Wilmington, N.C. (All times Eastern)

Friday, May 18
4 p.m. - Practice Session
5 p.m. – New player orientation meeting
6:30 p.m. - Pro-am

Saturday, May 19
9 a.m. - A Squad, eight qualifying games
3 p.m. - B Squad, eight qualifying games
    Top 1/3 of field advances to cashers round

Sunday, May 20
9 a.m. – Cashers round, four games (top 16 after 12 games advance)
11:30 a.m. – Round of 16, three games (top 8 after 15 games advance)
1:30 p.m. – Round of 8, two games (top 4 after 17 games advance)
3 p.m. – Top four stepladder finals

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Silver Lake Atom Splitters Sweep Philadelphia Hitmen to Win Third PBA League Elias Cup; Barnes named MVP

by Bill Vint May 13, 2018 11:48

PORTLAND, Maine – The Go Bowling! Silver Lake Atom Splitters became the first team to win three OceanView at Falmouth PBA League Elias Cup championships, winning in a dominant performance over the Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen at Bayside Bowl.

The two match, best-of-two-game finals, part of the 2018 Go Bowling! PBA Tour schedule, aired Sunday as the PBA Tour’s final telecast on ESPN after 38 consecutive years of coverage.

Silver Lake, the winner of back-to-back Elias Cups in 2014 and ’15, ended a two-year dry spell in a sweep over the Hitmen, who had never bowled in the Elias Cup finals. After a dominant semifinal round win over the Barbasol Motown Muscle, the Atom Splitters’ Jesper Svensson, Dick Allen, AJ Johnson, Tom Daugherty and Chris Barnes had only one close call in a four-game sweep.

After winning the opening game, 248-189, on the strength of seven strikes in the first eight frames, game two came down to a 10th frame showdown where Atom Splitters’ anchor Barnes threw three strikes to force Matt Sanders to match the effort to force a roll-off. Sanders ran the Hitmen’s string of strikes five, but on his final ball in the 10th frame, Sanders left a 9 pin and Silver Lake claimed a 216-215 decision.

With match one secured, and Philadelphia running into spare-shooting difficulties, Silver Lake easily won game three, 202-163. The Atom Splitters completed the sweep by throwing the first six strikes in game four, winning again, 246-192.

“We went undefeated, but on every shot, you do the math in your head and take it one shot at a time,” Silver Lake manager Mark Baker said. “My guys really bowled well. Really well. We played the lanes a little differently than everyone else, and our shot wasn’t going away. Jesper was Jesper. Dick Allen bowls great in this place. Daugherty, except for the solid 8, struck on about every ball. Putting Chris (Barnes) last relaxed (Dick) and I think that was the big difference.

“This is so much fun,” Baker continued. “It’s hard to explain to anyone who has never been here what the atmosphere is like. The first shot thrown (in the final round) gave me goosebumps. I don’t bowl any more. It wasn’t even my team, but that’s how electrifying it is here.”

mark roth mvpWhile the entire Atom Splitters team bowled well, the decision to award the Mark Roth PBA League Most Valuable Player Award came down to Chris Barnes’ three-strike, 10th frame performance in game two of the Elias Cup finals. Barnes also won the inaugural Roth MVP award in 2014, making him the first two-time winner.

“That’s pretty cool, but I look at it as more of a team thing,” Barnes said. “We all struck a lot. We only had a couple of close games. I struck out to win one. It was a big one to win, but if it hadn’t been for a stone 8 (by Daugherty), we wouldn’t have been in a position where I needed to do that.

“Our guys were really clicking for the most part. We never had more than one person in between strikes and even then, we were all lined up,” he added. “(Philadelphia) just couldn’t get all of its guys going at the same time, and that’s always the issue here.”

At the conclusion of the event, PBA CEO and Commissioner Tom Clark announced the PBA League will return to Bayside Bowl in 2019 as part of the PBA’s new television package with FOX Sports. Details will be announced later.


Bayside Bowl, Portland, Maine (aired Sunday on ESPN)

Elias Cup Championship (two best-of-two-game Baker format matches): Go Bowling! Silver Lake Atom Splitters (Jesper Svensson, Dick Allen, AJ Johnson, Tom Daugherty, Chris Barnes) def. Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen (Ronnie Russell, Chris Loschetter, Tom Smallwood, Dom Barrett, Matt Sanders), 2-0 (248-189 and 216-215; 202-163 and 246-192).


(Final position based on match play records followed by total pinfall)

1, Go Bowling! Silver Lake Atom Splitters (Jesper Svensson, Dick Allen, AJ Johnson, Tom Daugherty, Chris Barnes; manager Mark Baker), $60,000.

2, Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen (Ronnie Russell, Chris Loschetter, Tom Smallwood, Dom Barrett, Matt Sanders; manager Jason Couch), $50,000.

3, Shipyard Dallas Strikers (Bill O’Neill, player-manager Norm Duke, Kyle Sherman, Tommy Jones, Rhino Page), $35,000.

4, Barbasol Motown Muscle (Josh Blanchard, Shota Kawazoe, Francois Lavoie, Anthony Simonsen, EJ Tackett; manager Del Ballard Jr.), $35,000.

5, GEICO NYC WTT KingPins (Sam Cooley, Anthony Pepe, Pete Weber, BJ Moore, Marshall Kent; manager Carolyn Dorin-Ballard), $25,000.

6, OceanView at Falmouth Brooklyn Styles (Walter Ray Williams Jr., Parker Bohn III, Jason Sterner, Sean Rash, Matt O’Grady; manager Johnny Petraglia), $25,000.

7, bowlingball.com L.A. X (Stuart Williams, Martin Larsen, Osku Palermaa, Jason Belmonte, Jakob Butturff; manager Andrew Cain), $25,000.

8, Port Property Management Portland Lumberjacks (Ryan Ciminelli, Jojoe Yannaphon, DJ Archer, Kyle Troup, Wes Malott; manager Tim Mack), $25,000.

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Saturday & Sunday on ESPN: OceanView at Falmouth PBA League Elias Cup Finals & More

by Bill Vint May 11, 2018 09:21

PORTLAND, Maine – A big weekend of PBA competition on ESPN begins Saturday with an encore telecast of the 2018 State Farm CP3 PBA Celebrity Invitational, presented by GoBowling.com, and concludes Sunday with the Elias Cup finale of the sixth edition of OceanView at Falmouth PBA League competition at 1 p.m. ET, pitting the two-time champion Go Bowling! Silver Lake Atom Splitters against the Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen who are chasing their first PBA League championship in the raucous, fun-loving atmosphere of Bayside Bowl.

The Elias Cup finals, PBA’s final telecast in 38 years of continuous coverage on ESPN, also will include the awarding of the Mark Roth PBA League Most Valuable Player Award.

Preceding the Elias Cup finals, the big weekend of Go Bowling! PBA Tour television begins Saturday at 4 p.m. ET with the re-broadcast one of the PBA Tour’s favorite events, the CP3 Celebrity Invitational starring Houston Rockets All-Star Chris Paul and a few of his close friends along with a group of PBA stars. On Sunday, prior to the Elias Cup telecast, ESPN2 will re-air last Sunday’s PBA League semifinal round matches, starting at 11 a.m. ET, featuring matches between the Atom Splitters and the Barbasol Motown Muscle, and the Hitmen vs. the Shipyard Dallas Strikers.

The Atom Splitters roster, managed by Mark Baker, includes Swedish two-hander Jesper Svensson, 2015 Mark Roth MVP Dick Allen, PBA League newcomer AJ Johnson, Tom Daugherty and 2014 Mark Roth MVP Chris Barnes.

Philadelphia, managed by PBA Hall of Famer Jason Couch, will be bowling in the Elias Cup title match for the first time. The Hitmen are Ronnie Russell, Chris Loschetter, Dom Barrett, Tom Smallwood and Matt Sanders.

The Elias Cup will be decided using the same best-of-two-game format used in previous rounds with one variation: instead of one team match, the finals will feature two best-of-two matches, each of which will be decided by a one-ball roll-off if necessary. The new format presents the potential for a maximum of seven one-ball sudden-death roll-offs to decide ties.

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PBA Spare Shots: Big Weekend of PBA Bowling on ESPN Includes PBA League Elias Cup Finals

by Bill Vint May 10, 2018 08:55

PBA fans will be treated to six hours of great bowling action this weekend when ESPN airs the two-hour finals of the OceanView at Falmouth PBA League Elias Cup competition from Bayside Bowl in Portland, Maine on Sunday at 1 p.m. Eastern, plus re-broadcasts of the PBA League semifinals and the 2018 State Farm CP3 Celebrity Invitational presented by Go Bowling!.

The big weekend of Go Bowling! PBA Tour television begins Saturday at 4 p.m. ET with the re-broadcast one of the PBA Tour’s favorite events, the CP3 Celebrity Invitational. Chris Paul, as PBA fans may know, is the NBA All-Star point guard who played a key role in helping the Houston Rockets advance to the NBA Western Conference finals, highlighted by a 41-point, 10-assist performance in Wednesday’s decisive playoff game. The CP3 PBA Invitational telecast also features Paul’s teammates, James Harden and Trevor Ariza; newly-elected NFL Hall of Famer Terrell Owens; Boston Red Sox star Mookie Betts and PBA stars Norm Duke, Pete Weber, Bill O’Neill, Sean Rash, EJ Tackett, DJ Archer and Dino Castillo, among others.

Leading into Sunday’s historic finale on ESPN, PBA fans can re-visit the PBA League semifinal round that aired last Sunday, attracting an audience of 587,000 viewers – the largest PBA League audience for a preliminary round telecast since the PBAL moved to Maine in 2015. The semifinals will re-air on ESPN2 Sunday at 11 a.m. ET.

At 1 p.m., the PBA will bid farewell to one of the longest running television relationships in sports Sunday when the Elias Cup will be decided in a two-hour finale on ESPN.

“The PBA has enjoyed a great run on ESPN,” PBA CEO and Commissioner Tom Clark said. “Our partnership is a major chapter in PBA history and we will always be proud of the affiliation.”

PBA coverage was one of the first programming ventures signed by ESPN in 1979, its inaugural season. Over the past 38 years of continuous coverage – two years longer than PBA’s record run on ABC Television – ESPN has aired hundreds of PBA Tour and PBA50 Tour finals, including such memorable events as Pete Weber’s fifth U.S. Open victory; Kelly Kulick’s milestone win for women in sports in the 2010 PBA Tournament of Champions, and dozens of other events that are listed among the PBA’s 60 most memorable moments in its 60-year history.

For the balance of 2018, CBS Sports Network will provide coverage of the PBA Tour Finals and the U.S. Open before the PBA launches its new relationship with FOX Sports in 2019.

As legendary entertainer Bob Hope said, “Thanks for the memories…”


This weekend’s Xtra Frame schedule features the PWBA at Fountain Bowl in Fountain Valley, Calif., Friday and Saturday, before the PBA Tour returns to action with PBA Xtra Frame Wilmington, Open, the second of eight Xtra Frame PBA Tour events on the 2018 schedule. Anthony Simonsen of Austin, Texas, will begin defense of his 2017 title Saturday-Sunday, May 19-20, at Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center in Wilmington, N.C.

Xtra Frame also visits Reno, Nev., for the USBC Queens starting on May 17. Xtra Frame will cover qualifying and preliminary match play elimination rounds of PWBA’s first major championship of 2018 from the National Bowling Stadium May 17-21. The stepladder finals will air live on CBS Sports Network on Tuesday, May 22. Diana Zavjalova is the defending champion.

Xtra Frame, the online bowling channel of the PBA will be the livestream home of the PWBA Tour throughout the 2018 season, providing live coverage of all 14 events, including the stepladder finals of the first six standard events. Other finals will air on CBS Sports Network.

To enroll as an XtraFrame subscriber, visit xtraframe.tv. An entire month of coverage costs only $7.99. A three-day subscription is also available for $3.99, and the 12-month Season Ticket plan is offered for about $1.25 week.


The four additional milestones in PBA history listed below complete the list of the PBA”s “60 most memorable moments.” The top 10 moments (actually 11, because of a tie for 10th place) were revealed during the PBA’s 60th Anniversary celebration in Indianapolis in February, and are re-visited below along with “memorable moments” 12 through 16 which were unveiled on all of the PBA Network’s outlets last week. Here are those final moments:

1) Don Johnson’s 299 game in the championship game of the 1970 Firestone Tournament of Champions. He fell to floor after leaving a 10 pin on his final shot, rising to a standing ovation at Riviera Lanes.

2) Eddie Elias’ meeting with PBA’s 33 founding members in Syracuse, N.Y., in 1958.

3) Kelly Kulick becoming the first woman to win a PBA Tour title in the 2010 PBA Tournament of Champions in Las Vegas.

4) Pete McCordic winning a $100,000 bonus with a nerve-wracked 300 game on ABC-TV in 1987.

5) Pete Weber striking in the 10th frame to claim a record fifth U.S. Open title by one pin in 2012, then uttering his famous phrase, “Who Do You Think You Are, I Am!”

LeRoy Neiman Million Dollar Strike6) Earl Anthony surpassing the $1 million career earnings milestone for the first time in winning the 1982 PBA National Championship. The decisive strike was captured in an oil painting (at left) by renowned artist LeRoy Neiman who witnessed the event and titled his original artwork “The Million Dollar Strike.”

7) Del Ballard Jr., needing two strikes and 7 pins to win the 1991 Fair Lanes Open over Pete Weber, gets the first two but rolls a gutter ball on his last shot to lose.

8) Mark Roth becoming the first player to convert the 7-10 split in a 1980 televised PBA final.

9) Bob Learn Jr. throws 44 out of a possible 48 strikes, including a 300 game, for a record four-game TV total of 1,129 pins to win the PBA Flagship Open in an arena in his hometown of Erie, Pa., in 1996.

10 & 11) A tie between the 2011 TOC from Red Rock in Las Vegas where Mika Koivuniemi defeated Tom Daugherty in the biggest margin of victory ever, 299-100 (lowest game ever bowled on TV) and then goes on to win the $250,000 record first prize. It was the PBA’s first live telecast on ABC-TV since 1997. And also tied for 10th, Randy Pedersen needed a strike to defeat Ernie Schlegel to win the 1995 Touring Players Championship, but his seemingly perfect shot left a stone 8 pin, prompting Schlegel to go into a wild celebration.

12) Jack Biondolillo bowled the first nationally televised 300 game in PBA history during the finals of the 1967 Firestone Tournament of Champions, defeating Les Schissler, 300-216, in the second match of the finals and earning a $10,000 perfect game bonus. Biondolillo then lost to Don Johnson in the semifinal match, 228-172, and Jim Stefanich defeated Johnson, 43-36, in a two-frame roll-off for the title after they tied at 227.

13) In 1991, Pete Weber won his third BPAA U.S. Open title at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis, throwing 10 consecutive strikes after a spare and ending the match with a 10 pin to defeat Mark Thayer, 289- 184. During the trophy presentation, Weber famously hoisted the trophy only to have the ceramic eagle topple to the ground and shatter.

14) In 1962, ABC Sports began its “Pro Bowlers Tour” series coverage with the Empire State Open. Hall of Fame broadcaster Chris Schenkel was in the booth for the first broadcast. 

15) In the spring of 2000, the PBA was purchased by former Microsoft executives Chris Peters, Mike Slade and Rob Glaser. PBA headquarters were later relocated to Seattle after spending the first 42 years in Akron, Ohio.

To review all 60 memorable moments, visit: https://www.pba.com/PBANetwork/MostMemorableMoments.


Brad Angelo of Lockport, N.Y. defeated Charlie Brown Jr. of Grandville, Mich. by four pins Sunday to win the PBA Taylor Kia Central Open presented by Hammer at Holiday Bowl in Struthers, Ohio.

Angelo, a two-time PBA Tour titlist, finished with a 8-4 match play record and a total of 5,071 pins for 20 games, including match play bonus pins, for his second PBA Regional title and first since 2006. The 48-year-old Angelo earned $2,500 in his 49th PBA Regional over a span of 26 years as a PBA member. Brown posted an 8-4 match play record and knocked down 5,067 pins to earn the $1,350 runner-up prize.

Brad Miller from Maryland Heights, Mo., after losing his first two matches in the eight-game round robin finals, used games of 279 and 290 to vault to the lead and then held off Austin Boulds of Creal Springs, Ill., to claim his second PBA Regional title at the 11th annual PBA Junction City Bowl Southwest/Midwest Open presented by Dexter on Sunday in Junction City, Kan.

Miller took a 60-pin lead over Boulds into their position round match where the title came down to the final frame. Thanks to an early string of strikes, Boulds had a chance to claim the title, but a 4-9 split in the 10th frame ended his bid. Despite winning the game, 244-225, Boulds was unable to overcome Miller’s lead. Miller survived, 4,778-4,767 including match play bonus pins, for the $2,500 first prize.

Kole Payne of Charlotte, N.C., won his first PBA title and a $2,500 prize Sunday, defeating amateur Brian Dennis of Creedmoor, N.C., 213-190, to win the inaugural PBA Sandhills Aberdeen South Open at Sandhills Bowling Center in Aberdeen, N.C.

Payne, who qualified third for the stepladder finals with a 16-game pinfall of 3,374, mowed down three opponents in his second PBA event as a member. In first stepladder match, he defeated Zack Brown of Holly Springs, N.C., 236-182, and he then eliminated five-time PBA Tour champion Dick Allen of Columbia, S.C., 236-197, in the semifinal match.

● Mother’s Day weekend, May 11-13, includes these PBA Regional events: the PBA50 and PBA Baldo Campana Memorial/Ohio Lottery Central Open doubleheader (PBA50 presented by MOTIV, one-day reduced entry fee PBA presented by DV8) at Rebman Recreation in Lorain, Ohio; the Oklahoma City Southwest Open at Planet Bowl in Oklahoma City; the PBA and PBA50 FiX Auto of Puyallup Open doubleheader (PBA50 presented by Sunset Auto Group; PBA presented by The Old Cannery) at Daffodil Bowl in Puyallup, Wash., and the PBA-PWBA Jim’s Strike Zone Pro Shop Northwest Open presented by Daffodil Bowl and Vise, also in Puyallup.

● The only event on PBA’s Regional calendar for the May 18-20 weekend is the Waxahachie Southwest Challenge at Hilltop Lanes in Waxahachie, Texas.

● The May 24-26 PBA Regional schedule includes the PBA and PBA50 Vanessa Brown Homes West Open (PBA presented by Track, PBA50 presented by Ebonite); the Colony Park Lanes East Challenge presented by Columbia 300 in York, Pa., and the Celeste Walker Midwest/Central Open presented by American Family Insurance at Strike-N-Spare II in Lockport, Ill.

● 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 PBA app).


● PBA member Michael J. Jackson of Brook Park, Ohio, died on April 30, four days after his 52nd birthday. Jackson had been a member since 2000. He bowled in six PBA Regional events without winning a title. Funeral services were held on May 3 in Brunswick, Ohio.

● The PBA has learned that former member Julius Glockner of Raeford, N.C., died on April 27 from cancer. He was 78. A native of Croatia, Glockner was a 26-year U.S. Army veteran who served in Vietnam, Germany and Korea.

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PBA’s 10th Anniversary World Series of Bowling Returns to Its Detroit Roots in March 2019

by Bill Vint May 9, 2018 13:17

ALLEN PARK, Mich. – The Professional Bowlers Association’s 10th anniversary World Series of Bowling will return to its roots at historic Thunderbowl Lanes in suburban Detroit, and will include a unique television package with the PBA’s new broadcast partner, FOX Sports, PBA CEO and Commissioner Tom Clark announced today.

WSOB X, a multi-event tournament series, will be held March 11-21 as part of the 2019 Go Bowling! PBA Tour at the same site that hosted the inaugural World Series in 2009.

“The PBA World Series of Bowling has evolved over the past nine years in becoming the world’s premier event in professional bowling,” Clark said. “The 10th edition will be the most electrifying yet, with multiple PBA titles being won live in prime time on national TV on consecutive nights. None of this growth would have been possible without the shared vision of Thunderbowl Lanes proprietor Tom Strobl and the great bowling fans of Detroit, so it’s with great pleasure that the PBA will return to the place of the WSOB’s birth in 2019.”

WSOB X will include four championship events that were part of the original event: the Cheetah Championship (won in 2009 by Norm Duke), Chameleon Championship (won by Bill O’Neill), Scorpion Championship (won by Mike DeVaney) and the PBA World Championship (won by Tom Smallwood). The finals of those four events will be televised live by FOX Sports in prime time on consecutive nights in March. A fifth event – a special USA vs. The World team match – will be the final event of WSOB X. Details will be announced soon.

Thunderbowl Lanes’ unique arena bay, originally built to showcase team bowling in an era just before the PBA’s formation in 1958, will be the site of the FOX Sports telecasts, continuing a WSOB tradition that has included events at premier bowling venues including South Point in Las Vegas and the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev.

Since its formation, the WSOB has become a magnet for both established and rising international bowling stars. Bowlers from 41 different countries have participated over the past nine years.

Because the PBA’s new partnership with FOX Sports begins in 2019 and presents an opportunity to televise the entire World Series live, there is no 2018 WSOB. The PBA replaced the World Series on the 2018 schedule with the recently-announced PBA Fall Swing in Tulsa, Okla., in October.

Only PBA members will be eligible to enter the World Series. Detrails and a complete schedule of WSOB X events will be announced soon.

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