PBA Spare Shots: Boston Red Sox Star Mookie Betts’ Skills Continue to Impress Fellow Competitors

by Bill Vint January 17, 2020 09:37

Boston Red Sox star Mookie Betts, in his first appearance in PBA Tour competition since the 2017 PBA World Series of Bowling, continued to impress his fellow competitors with his promise as a bowling talent.

A feature story by Fort Worth Star-Telegram writer Jeff Wilson (https://www.star-telegram.com/sports/article239305808.html) includes high praise for Betts’ bowling skills while competing at the highest level of the sport in this week’s PBA Hall of Fame Classic in Arlington, Texas. The first tournament of the 2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour season gave Betts a chance to bowl at an elite level before reporting to spring training with the Red Sox.

Bowling on a PBA Commissioner’s Exemption, Betts had no expectation of winning the tournament against a field of 55 PBA members, 40 of whom are PBA Tour champions.

“The No. 1 thing is don’t come in last,” Betts said. “After that, it’s still competition and making sure you enjoy yourself. Obviously, I’ll do a lot of learning, so when I go back home I can take these things and apply them.”

Bowling on a challenging scoring environment involving different lane conditions applied to the right and left lanes across the bowling center, Betts hoped to finish “even,” which is bowling parlance means a 200 average for his 12 qualifying games. He just missed, averaging 198.58, but he accomplished goal No. 1, finishing in 48th place in the field of 56 – outscoring six PBA title winners.

For additional insight into Betts’ competition in Arlington, watch Lucas Wiseman’s interview on FloBowling: https://www.flobowling.com/video/6650445-mookie-having-fun-enjoys-dream-cross-at-hof-classic.

FLOBOWLING TO LIVESTREAM PBA HALL OF FAME CEREMONIES SATURDAY

FloBowling.com will livestream Saturday’s PBA Hall of Fame induction ceremonies and 2019 awards presentations, beginning at 7:30 p.m. EST. Former PBA co-owners Rob Glaser and Mike Slade will join former partner Chris Peters in the hall while Tommy Jones will be inducted as the newest superior performance inductee. The ceremonies at the Arlington Hilton will include the presentation of PBA’s 2019 Player and Rookie of the Year, Nagy Sportsmanship and Tony Reyes Community Service Awards to Jason Belmonte, Mykel Holliman, Martin Larsen and Chuck Gardner, respectively.

KRIS PRATHER RANKS SECOND IN PBA TELEVISION WINNING PERCENTAGE

As the 2020 PBA Tour closes in on its first television final (PBA Hall of Fame Classic Sunday at 1 p.m. EST on FS1), it’s a good time to review a couple of the PBA’s most notable television records: winning percentage and scoring average.

In the aftermath of the 2019 season, when he won his first two PBA Tour titles (PBA Scorpion Championship and PBA Playoffs), Kris Prather of Plainfield, Ill., moved into second place in winning percentage among PBA Players who have made at least 10 television appearances in singles events. Prather, who has now bowled on television 12 times, has won 13 matches and lost only five times for a 72.22 winning percentage. He trails only Jim Pencak who posted a remarkable 22-8 record in his 12 TV appearances back in the 1989-90 era (73.33 percent success rate).

Currently in the top 10 among active players are Dick Allen (tied for seventh with Steve Martin with a 13-7 record in 14 appearances for a 65.00 winning percentage) and Jesper Svensson in ninth place (21-12, 63.63 per cent in 21 appearances).

It’s also interesting to note that in the history of PBA televised matches, only 25 qualifying players have won at least 60 per cent of their TV matches.

In the scoring category, five active players are among the top 10 in career averages for at least 10 singles events, led by Ryan Ciminelli with a 232.05 average for 31 games in 19 appearances and No. 2 Jakob Butturff who has averaged 230.14 for 15 games in 13 appearances. Svensson is eighth on the list with a 226.23 average for 33 games in 21 appearances.

But most impressive on the list – are two superstars with more than 100 games on television: PBA Hall of Famers Norm Duke, who ranks fourth on the all-time list with a 228.88 average for 189 games in 118 appearances, and Walter Ray Williams Jr. who is right behind Duke, scoring at a 228.21 pace for his record 228 games bowled in 177 TV appearances.

PBA, PWBA TO TEAM UP FOR SPECIAL MIXED DOUBLES EVENT AT BOWL EXPO

The PBA and PWBA will team up for a mixed doubles special event featuring four teams representing the sport’s biggest brand names that will be held in conjunction with International Bowl Expo, the bowling industry’s largest annual gathering, will host a special made-for-TV event featuring the biggest names on the sport’s professional tours.

StormrepHankBoomershine_BillONeill_ShannonOKeefe_tournamentfounderDonnaConners(6) (1)The made-for-TV event will be held at the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center in Denver, Colo., and televised live on FS1 on Sunday, July 5, at 7 p.m. Eastern. The two-hour show will include Bill O’Neill and Shannon O’Keefe (at left), representing Hammer; Dom Barrett and Dasha Kovalova as Brunswick teammates; Jason Belmonte and Danielle McEwan, bowling for Storm, and EJ Tackett and Maria José Rodriguez, competing for Team MOTIV.

Worth noting, the pairings will re-unite O’Neill and O’Keefe who are three-time winners of the PBA-PWBA Storm Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles championship (2013, ’15 and ’16), held annually in Houston.

The PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles will have two one-game Baker format semifinal matches, with matchups determined by blind draw. The winning teams will bowl for the title. The television show, organized in cooperation with the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America and the USBC, also will include a special one-ball roll-off between the 2020 Intercollegiate Singles Championships men’s and women’s winners will be held between the PBA-PWBA semifinals and title matches.

International Bowl Expo will take place July 2-6 with the TV show taking place following the first day of the event’s trade show on July 5. Bowl Expo is the annual industry event hosted by BPAA, featuring educational seminars, trade show, national speakers, entertainment and more. Visit BPAA.com/BowlExpo to learn more.

PBA PLAYER’S PERSPECTIVE: JAKOB BUTTURFF RE-VISITS 2019 OKLAHOMA OPEN WIN

The newest edition of the PBA Player’s Perspective interview series features Jakob Butturff sharing insight into his victory in the 2019 PBA Oklahoma Open. The episode debuts on Tuesday, Jan. 21, as Butturff prepares to defend his title in the 2020 Oklahoma Open in Shawnee, Okla.

To view all of the PBA Player’s Perspective episodes, visit the PBA’s YouTube channel and click on the PBA Player’s Perspective play list. The weekly series will add a new perspective every Tuesday. The following players will provide personal play-by-play reflections in the weeks ahead:

Jan. 28 – Sean Rash will take a look into his past, revealing what he experienced in winning the 2012 PBA Tournament of Champions in Las Vegas.

Player’s Perspectives currently in the archives on YouTube include:

• Norm Duke’s stunning 2011 U.S. Open win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQ0cGzRfnBk).

• Kris Prather’s historic PBA Playoffs victory (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hISjw3KmGCk).

• Anthony Simonsen’s win in the 2019 Bear Open. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tt2k25WKNzQ).

Sean Rash’s 2019 Wolf Open title (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GNxO2WdaZo).

• EJ Tackett’s Barbasol PBA Tour Finals victory (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVuLOuU8btQ).

Bill O’Neill’s 2019 Harry O’Neale Chesapeake Open win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xSwE3YYFjso).

• Jason Belmonte’s historic 11th major title victory in the 2019 PBA World Championship (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4QqbkRPirM).

• Jakob Butturff’s 2019 USBC Masters win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cuYcXxfXXs).

EJ Tackett’s 2017 DHC PBA Japan Invitational victory. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91yoFd7nd8g).

Kris Prather’s 2019 PBA Scorpion Championship win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-aVe_n8uCOM).

• Bill O’Neill’s 2019 PBA Hall of Fame Classic victory that made him title-eligible for future PBA HOF consideration (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OeHXCYxWH4o).

Fans can follow all of the latest video clips and more by enrolling as a subscriber to PBA’s YouTube channel. It’s easy and it’s free. Visit YouTube.com/PBABowling and click on the “subscribe” button.

PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: 2020 SEASON BEGINS WITH TWO EVENTS JAN. 17-19

The 2020 PBA Regional season gets underway over the Jan. 17-19 weekend with tournaments in North Carolina and California for PBA50 competitors. Westview Lanes in Wilson, N.C., will host the PBA50 Richie’s Automotive South Open and Tracy Bowl in Tracy, Calif., will host the PBA50 Patton Amusement West Regional.

For complete PBA Regional schedules including 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. Whether you are a competitor or a fan, you can follow “live scoring” for all PBA Regional events on pba.com (easily accessible for Apple and Android device users using the PBA app).

QUICK NOTES

The dates for the PBA50 River City Extreme Open at River City Extreme in Monticello, Minn., have been changed to July 28-31, rather than the June dates previously announced.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

2020 Bowl Expo to Host PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles Special Event With Live Coverage on FS1

by Bill Vint January 14, 2020 15:32

ARLINGTON, Texas – International Bowl Expo, the bowling industry’s largest annual gathering, will host a special made-for-TV event featuring the biggest names on the sport’s professional tours.

Members of the Professional Women’s Bowling Association (PWBA) and Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) will team for a mixed doubles event at 2020 International Bowl Expo, which will be held at the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center in Denver in July.

The PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles will be televised live on Sunday, July 5, at 8 p.m. (Eastern) on FS1.

The two-hour show will have four mixed doubles teams representing the biggest brands in the sport – Brunswick, Hammer, Motiv, Storm – and Brunswick will build two lanes, featuring their new SparkTM technology, for the event.

“Bowl Expo is the biggest annual event for the bowling industry and what a great way to showcase the highest levels of competition in our sport,” said Randy Thompson, president of the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America (BPAA), the host organization of Bowl Expo. “To have the best bowlers in the world on a nationally televised TV show, on a Sunday, allows the bowling community to celebrate the passion and commitment we all have for the sport.”

The PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles teams for the event are:

· Brunswick – Dasha Kovalova and Dom Barrett

· Hammer – Shannon O’Keefe and Bill O’Neill

· Motiv – Maria José Rodriguez and EJ Tackett

· Storm – Danielle McEwan and Jason Belmonte

O’Keefe won her second consecutive PWBA Player of the Year title while Belmonte was the PBA Player of the Year for the fifth time in 2019. Each of the eight participants has won a major title in their career, with Belmonte having a record 11 career major titles.

“This will be a fantastic event for Bowl Expo attendees, the national TV audience and for our sport,” said Colie Edison, CEO of the PBA. “The PBA Tour has seen tremendous viewership growth through our partnership with FOX Sports and this special event is a tremendous addition to the schedule. We appreciate the opportunity to partner with BPAA and the PWBA Tour on this.”

FOX Sports and its family of channels are the television partner for the 2020 Go Bowling! PBA Tour.

The PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles will have two semifinal matches, with matchups determined by blind draw. The semifinals will be one-game matches using the Baker format, in which the bowlers will alternate each frame. The first competitor on the team bowls frames 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, and the second team member bowls frames 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, with the winning teams to bowl for the title.

College bowling and the scholarships offered in the sport also will be featured at Bowl Expo during the television show. A special roll-off featuring the 2020 Intercollegiate Singles Championships (ISC) winners will be held between the semifinals and title match of the PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles.

The ISC boys champion and ISC girls champion each will get one roll on the TV lanes. If the player rolls strike on their one attempt, they will be awarded a $10,000 scholarship.

International Bowl Expo will take place July 2-6 with the TV show to be held immediately following the first day of the event’s trade show on July 5. All Bowl Expo attendees will be able to attend the event as part of their Bowl Expo registration.

The PWBA Tour is a collaborate effort of BPAA and the United States Bowling Congress (USBC). Visit PWBA.com to learn more.

The PBA Tour has more than 3,000 members from 27 countries competing in its competitions each year. Visit PBA.com for more information.

Bowl Expo is the annual industry event hosted by BPAA, featuring educational seminars, trade show, national speakers, entertainment and more. Visit BPAA.com/BowlExpo to learn more.

About International Bowling Campus

The International Bowling Campus (IBC) is the headquarters for the bowling industry and directly serves the more than 69 million bowlers in the United States. The IBC houses the resources of the United States Bowling Congress, the governing body and membership organization for the sport; the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America, representing the business interests of bowling centers; IBC Youth Development; Strike Ten Entertainment, the marketing arm for the industry; the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame; the International Bowling Pro Shop and Instructors Association; the International Bowling Media Association; the Bowling News Network; the Billiard and Bowling Institute of America; and the International Training and Research Center.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

PBA News: Dick Allen, Brian Kretzer Repeat but Newcomers Dominate 2019 PBA Regional Awards

by Bill Vint January 14, 2020 09:51

CHICAGO – Veteran PBA Regional competitors Dick Allen of Lexington, S.C., and Brian Kretzer of Kettering, Ohio, were repeat winners in 2019 PBA Regional awards categories, but otherwise, it was a year dominated by newcomers and first-time award recipients.

Allen, who won his first PBA South Region Player of the Year award during the 2004-05 season, won back to back honors in 2018 and ’19 while Kretzer (below) Kretzer.Brian_2018SrUSOpenfinals(6)captured Senior Player of the Year for the third time in four years in the PBA’s Central Region while also winning the same honor in the PBA Midwest. Kretzer had previously won both Senior POY honors in 2017.

Another familiar winner was PBA Hall of Famer Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Fla., who was named South Region Senior Player of the Year for the third time in the past four years.

Those accomplishments in 2019 were among the highlights of the PBA Regional awards program that annually honors a Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Pat Patterson Award winner. The recipients were announced today by Director of the PBA Regional and PBA50 Tours John Weber for each of the seven domestic regions.

The Pat Patterson Award recipients are recognized for contributions to the regional program. Award winners were selected by the PBA’s regional managers: Russ Mills, East Region; Sam Zurich, South Region; Bobby Jakel, Central and Midwest Regions; Pete McCordic, Southwest Region, and Gary Mage, West and Northwest Regions.

Here’s a summary of the 2019 PBA Regional Award winners:

EAST – Keith Laing of Oakdale, Conn., won two titles in seven tournaments and led his region in earnings to capture Player of the Year honors for the first time. Rookie of the Year was Baltimore’s Zachary Dudley who cashed in three of his five events, qualifying for match play in one of them. Sammy Ventura of Syracuse, N.Y., Senior Player of the Year after winning two titles in eight tries and added three additional top five finishes to win the PBA50 honor for the third time. Don Herrington of Ballston Lake, N.Y., was recipient of the East Region’s Pat Patterson Award.

SOUTH – PBA Tour veteran Dick Allen of Lexington, S.C., repeated as PBA South Region Player of the Year and his third overall after initially winning the 2004-05 honor. Allen bowled in eight events and won four of them, earning nearly $12,000 in the process. Lithuania’s Kristijons Sergejeves, a former Webber International collegiate star, entered seven tournaments, cashed in four and had a second-place finish to win Rookie of the Year honors. Ageless PBA Hall of Famer Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Fla., bowled in eight events and finished in third place or higher (winning once) to capture South Region Senior Player of the Year honors for the third time in the last four seasons. Rich Kosto of Tavares, Fla., was recipient of the region’s Pat Patterson Award.

CENTRAL – Central Region veteran Patrick Dombrowski of Parma, Ohio, failed to win a title, but he finished among the top four in eight of 10 tournaments he entered, finishing second three times, to end Graham Fach’s two-year run as Player of the Year. It was Dombrowski’s first POY selection. David Harold II of Columbus, Ohio, captured Rookie of the Year honors after cashing in eight of 15 tournaments and recording a fourth-place finish. Brian Kretzer of Kettering, Ohio regained the Senior Player of the Year he held in 2016 and ’17, winning six times in 15 tournaments and recording four additional top five finishes. Bruce VanMetre of Delphos, Ohio, was recipient of the region’s Pat Patterson Award.

MIDWEST – Brady Stearns of St. Augusta, Minn., was one of the rare players to win both PBA Midwest Region Player and Rookie of the Year awards after winning his first title and finishing second in two other events. Brian Kretzer of Kettering, Ohio, repeated his 2017 double-header feat by winning Senior Player of the Year honors in the Midwest and Central Regions after posting seven top-five finishes in eight events in the Midwest, including one title. The 2018 Midwest Senior Player of the Year, Jeff Johnson of Freeport, Ill., earned another honor as the Midwest’s Pat Patterson Award recipient.

SOUTHWEST – After contending for the honor for a few years, Anthony Lavery-Spahr of Pasadena, Texas, had a breakout year to win the Southwest Region’s top honor. Lavery-Spahr was selected as the region’s Player of the Year after winning one title and finishing second and third twice each. Thomas Rash of Longview, Texas, earned Rookie of the Year honors after posting two top-five finishes in the nine tournaments he entered. Paul Fleming of Fort Worth, Texas, was the Southwest Region’s Senior Player of the Year after recording second- and third-place finishes in four tries. Scott Dodson of Waxahachie, Texas, was awarded the Southwest Region Pat Patterson Award.

WEST – West Region veteran PJ Haggerty of Roseville, Calif., won Player of the Year honors for the first time, notching first-, second-, fourth- and fifth-place finishes in seven tournaments. Taylor Jacobs of Auburn, Calif., was selected as Rookie of the Year after cashing in four of six events. Bob Rosenau of Redding, Calif., was a first-time West Region Senior Player of the Year after two runner-up and a fifth-place finish in four events. Ty Dawson of Sunnyvale, Calif., was named the Pat Patterson Award recipient.

NORTHWEST – Christopher Tuholski of Gresham, Ore., had one finish in each of the top five positions – including a title – in the seven tournaments he entered to end Jakob Butturff’s three-year reign as Northwest Player of the Year while Zack Stone of Kelso, Wash., cashed in three of his four tournaments with a best finish of third place to earn Rookie of the Year honors. John Gould of Yuba City, Calif., captured his first Senior Player of the Year nod after one win and two other top-five finishes in five events. Don Marquart of Klamath Falls, Ore., was selected as the Pat Patterson Award recipient.

The PBA’s regional program, founded in 1970, provides bowlers with a proving ground to develop their skills in high-level competition against some of the sport’s established stars. The PBA Regional program annually conducts roughly 150 events across the nation and in its Japan Region.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

PBA Spare Shots: Go Bowling PBA Tour Fans are Advised to Order Admission Tickets Early to Avoid Sellouts

by Bill Vint January 10, 2020 08:22

Go Bowling PBA Tour fans are advised to order admission tickets early for 2020 television finals seats, based upon the “sold out” success of last year’s schedule.

The best way to watch the Go Bowling PBA Tour finals is inside the specially designed FOX Sports TV set. Each venue offers a variety of seating options and ticket prices for exclusive experiences that fit exactly what you’re looking for during the finals.

In support of the PBA Tour’s record television viewership in 2019, the PBA is again expecting growth in on-site attendance in 2020. Tickets for all tournament finals through the PBA World Series of Bowling XI in Las Vegas can be ordered online at: https://www.pba.com/Tickets/.

STRIKEFORCE SIGNS MULTI-YEAR PBA PRODUCT REGISTRATION AGREEMENT

Strikeforce Bowling LLC has announced the signing of a three-year product registration agreement with the PBA, providing all PBA members access to use the extensive line of Strikeforce Bowling bags and accessories in competition.

“Supporting the Professional Bowlers Association is a natural fit for KR Strikeforce,” said Strikeforce President Brad Handelman. “Given the exciting Fox Sports television deal, recent acquisition of the Tour by Bowlero Corp, an expanded schedule, and increased prize funds, the timing was perfect to commit to a multi-year agreement and support the exciting future of our sport at the highest level.”

PBA PLAYER’S PERSPECTIVE: BILL O’NEILL RE-LIVES PBA HALL OF FAME CLASSIC VICTORY

The PBA Player’s Perspective interview series, featuring PBA title winners reflecting on their victories, kicks off the 2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour season by re-visiting Bill O’Neill’s victory in the 2019 season-opener, the PBA Hall of Fame Classic. By winning his 10th career title, O’Neill became title-eligible for PBA Hall of Fame consideration in 2025, his 20th year as a PBA member.

To view all of the PBA Player’s Perspective episodes, visit the PBA’s YouTube channel and click on the PBA Player’s Perspective play list. The weekly series will add a new perspective every Tuesday. The following players will provide personal play-by-play reflections in the weeks ahead:

Jan. 21 – Jakob Butturff made the PBA Oklahoma Open a part of his “career year.” He’ll share insights about his 2019 win in Shawnee, Okla.

Jan. 28 – Sean Rash will take a look into his past, revealing what he experienced in winning the 2012 PBA Tournament of Champions in Las Vegas.

Player’s Perspectives currently in the archives on YouTube include:

• Norm Duke’s stunning 2011 U.S. Open win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQ0cGzRfnBk).

• Kris Prather’s historic PBA Playoffs victory (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hISjw3KmGCk).

• Anthony Simonsen’s win in the 2019 Bear Open. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tt2k25WKNzQ).

Sean Rash’s 2019 Wolf Open title (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GNxO2WdaZo).

• EJ Tackett’s Barbasol PBA Tour Finals victory (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVuLOuU8btQ).

Bill O’Neill’s 2019 Harry O’Neale Chesapeake Open win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xSwE3YYFjso).

• Jason Belmonte’s historic 11th major title victory in the 2019 PBA World Championship (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4QqbkRPirM).

• Jakob Butturff’s 2019 USBC Masters win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cuYcXxfXXs).

EJ Tackett’s 2017 DHC PBA Japan Invitational victory. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91yoFd7nd8g).

Kris Prather’s 2019 PBA Scorpion Championship win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-aVe_n8uCOM).

Fans can follow all of the latest video clips and more by enrolling as a subscriber to PBA’s YouTube channel. It’s easy and it’s free. Visit YouTube.com/PBABowling and click on the “subscribe” button.

PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: 2020 SEASON BEGINS WITH TWO EVENTS JAN. 17-19

The 2020 PBA Regional season gets underway over the Jan. 17-19 weekend with tournaments in North Carolina and California for PBA50 competitors. Westview Lanes in Wilson, N.C., will host the PBA50 Richie’s Automotive South Open and Tracy Bowl in Tracy, Calif., will host the PBA50 Patton Amusement West Regional.

Scheduled for Jan. 29-30 is the PBA Japan Region’s Ikyo Cup Wolf Open at Ikyo Bowl Inzai in Inzai, Japan.

The PBA Central Region kicks off its 2020 schedule over the Jan. 31-Feb. 2 weekend with the PBA/PBA50 Don Vay Memorial Doubles Classic at Legend Lanes in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.

For complete PBA Regional schedules including 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. Whether you are a competitor or a fan, you can follow “live scoring” for all PBA Regional events on pba.com (easily accessible for Apple and Android device users using the PBA app).

QUICK NOTES

The PBA will again have strong representation on Team USA 2020 based on performances in the 2020 USBC Team USA Trials that concluded Tuesday at Gold Coast Bowling Center in Las Vegas. PBA players who either bowled their way onto the team, or were selected by the National Selection Committee, were Kyle Sherman of O’Fallon, Mo.; Nick Pate of Inver Grove Heights, Minn.; Andrew Anderson of Holly, Mich.; AJ Johnson of Oswego, Ill.; Kyle Troup of Taylorsville, N.C.; Marshall Kent of Yakima, Wash.; EJ Tackett of Bluffton, Ind.; Kris Prather of Plainfield, Ill., and Jakob Butturff of Tempe, Ariz.

PBA Tour star AJ Johnson has learned he’ll be inducted into the Oswego, Ill., High School Hall of Fame on Saturday, Feb. 15. In addition to excelling in bowling in high school, Johnson also was a baseball and football competitor.

PBA member Nick Pate of Inver Grove Heights, Minn., has been elected as an athlete representative to the USBC Board of Directors, fulfilling the three-year term of fellow PBA member Rhino Page who stepped down to focus on new business opportunities within the bowling industry. Pate’s term will expire on July 31, 2020. Andrew Anderson, Kelly Kulick and Josie Barnes are the other athlete representatives on the USBC Board.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.

Boston Red Sox Star Mookie Betts to Return to PBA Competition in PBA Hall of Fame Classic Jan. 13-19

by Bill Vint January 8, 2020 08:15

CHICAGO – Boston Red Sox All-Star outfielder Mookie Betts is planning to return to Professional Bowlers Association competition for the first time since bowling a 300 game in the 2017 PBA World Series of Bowling IX when he competes in the PBA Hall of Fame Classic Jan. 13-19 at the International Training and Research Center in Arlington, Texas.

Betts, who also competed in the PBA WSOB VII at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nevada, was invited to participate in the PBA Hall of Fame Classic on a commissioner’s exemption by PBA Commissioner Tom Clark. The HOF Classic is the first event on the 2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour schedule. The finals will air live on FS1 at 1 p.m. Eastern on Sunday, Jan. 19, kicking off the PBA’s second season of television coverage by FOX Sports.

Betts, who turned 27 in October, has been an enthusiastic and talented bowler most of his life. He was named Tennessee High School Bowler of the Year in 2010 and began developing his relationship with the PBA in 2014 when he made it known he wanted to participate in the annual Chris Paul PBA Celebrity Invitational, an annual fundraiser hosted by the National Basketball Association superstar in partnership with the PBA. Betts has subsequently bowled in the CP3 event three times, winning the doubles title in the 2019 event with PBA partner Tommy Jones who will be inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame during ceremonies on Saturday, Jan. 18, as part of the PBA HOF weekend.

Betts is destined to become one of baseball’s all-time great players if his career path remains on track. In 2018 he became the first player in Major Baseball League history to win the Most Valuable Player, Silver Slugger, Gold Glove, batting title and a World Series ring in the same season.

Betts, who has been practicing three to four days a week over the winter, is enthusiastic about his return to the lanes to add another chapter to his bowling resumé.

“Bowling is a sport I’ve enjoyed with my family since I was a kid,” Betts said. “It brings a sense of community that’s important in my life.”

The PBA Hall of Fame Classic will be contested in the 14-lane International Training and Research Center which is a joint venture between United States Bowling Congress and the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America. It is one of the most innovative and advanced training, research and testing facilities in the sport of bowling, and serves as the training facility for Team USA, among its numerous functions.

Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pennsylvania, is the defending PBA Hall of Fame Classic champion, winning the 2019 title by defeating top qualifier Jakob Butturff of Tempe, Ariz., 199-194, in the final match.

Admission and television show tickets, and pro-am information for the PBA Hall of Fame Classic (and other Go Bowling PBA Tour events) are available online. Visit: https://www.pba.com/Tickets.

All preliminary rounds of the PBA Hall of Fame Classic will be livestreamed by FloBowling. For FloBowling subscription information, visit: https://www.flobowling.com/.

PBA HALL OF FAME CLASSIC
(A 2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour event)
International Training and Research Center, Arlington, Texas (all times are CST)

Monday, Jan. 13
2 p.m. – Pre-Tournament Qualifier (PTQ), 8 games.

Tuesday, Jan. 14
10 a.m. – Squad A practice session
2 p.m. – Squad B practice session
6 p.m. – Pro-Am squad

Wednesday, Jan. 15
11 a.m. – Squad A, 6 qualifying games.
5 p.m. – Squad B, 6 qualifying games.

Thursday, Jan. 16
11 a.m. – Squad B, 6 qualifying games.
5 p.m. – Squad A, 6 qualifying games.
Top 14 after 12 games advance to round robin match play.

Friday, Jan. 17
11 a.m. – Top 14, 7 games match play.
5 p.m. – Top 14, 7 games match play.
Top 5 after 26 games advance to stepladder finals.

Saturday, Jan. 18
5 p.m. – PBA Hall of Fame dinner (cocktail reception at International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame; HOF induction ceremonies at Arlington Hilton).

Sunday, Jan. 19
Noon – Top 5 stepladder finals (1 p.m. EST; live on FS1).

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it.