PBA Spare Shots/Storm WSOB XI Notebook: Fans Can Still Enjoy Spirit of Competition Through Mobile Games

by Bill Vint March 20, 2020 14:44

PBA competition may be suspended at the moment, but you can still enjoy the spirit of competition in the comfort of your living room by playing one of the most popular mobile device games in the world – PBA Bowling Challenge for mobile devices – or the new PBA Pro Bowling game for consoles and mobile devices.

Concrete Software’s PBA Bowling Challenge for mobile devices can be downloaded at no cost at Google Play or the App Store. Millions of users currently enjoy the challenges of bowling in a variety of tournaments, making equipment choices and competing in a wide range of venues.

PBA Pro Bowling is a newer virtual game, offering players multi-player and tournament options. PBA Pro Bowling is offered for XBoxOne, PS4, Nintendo Switch and Steam platforms for $19.99. To learn more, visit: http://probowling.com/.

LEFTOVER NEWS FROM THE STORM PBA WORLD SERIES OF BOWLING

Bowling fans around the world are aware of mass postponements and cancellations of bowling activities at all levels in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, including the premature ending of the Storm PBA World Series of Bowling XI.

Left in suspended animation as the PBA – along with thousands of other sporting events – rapidly shut down activities in the interest of complying with urgent safety standards intended to keep players, fans, staff and others as insulated as possible from exposure to the virus were a few news items of interest. Among them:

The joint announcement by PBA and Storm Products that Storm had become titled sponsor of the Storm PBA World Series of Bowling XI.

The USA vs. The World team event that was scheduled to conclude WSOB XI was subsequently cancelled. Before the cancellation, however, three-time PBA Tour titlist Bob Learn Jr. was named captain of the United States team, and the players who had qualified for his team were Jakob Butturff, EJ Tackett, Chris Via, Darren Tang and Bill O’Neill, the five highest-finishing American players in PBA World Championship qualifying. The World team, captained by England’s Stuart Williams, would have included Sweden’s Jesper Svensson, Canada’s Francois Lavoie, Australia’s Jason Belmonte, Denmark’s Carsten Hansen and England’s Dom Barrett.

WSOB XI was full of stories, but one of the most unusual was the extreme case of “lost-and-found” involving second-year PBA Tour competitor Michael Martell of Brooklyn, N.Y. Martell averaged 178.2 with a high game of 196 for his first five games in Go Bowling Cheetah Championship qualifying, finishing the round with a 891 total and sitting in 117th place in the 120-player field. Then, in an historical reversal, the 22-year-old lefthander averaged 267.8 for his next five games, including rolling back-to-back 300 games (the only perfect games among 1,200 games bowled by the entire field in Cheetah qualifying) for a 1,339 block, moving up 96 places to finish 21st – 12 pins shy of making the cut to 16 finalists for Cheetah match play.

PWBA titlist Danielle McEwan was one of two women in the World Series field, qualifying out of the Pre-Tournament Qualifier, and the only woman to qualify for the match play elimination rounds. McEwan qualified sixth in the Scorpion Championship round, but what happens next remains unresolved as all three of the animal pattern championships were postponed. The domino effect of WSOB postponements also meant PBA competition points races affecting the 2020 PBA Playoffs and PBA League Draft eligibility also remain unresolved. Marie Jose Rodriguez, also a PWBA champion and wife of PBA competitor Nathan Bohr, also made it into the WSOB field, advancing out of the PTQ as “first alternate” but earning a spot in the field when a previously entered player withdrew.

All PBA tournament activity at all levels (PBA Tour, PBA50 Tour and Regional) have been suspended indefinitely because of the coronavirus. Partly because of the PBA’s extensive participation internationally, all parties affected should expect the hiatus to continue until global leaders are certain the virus pandemic is under control. Please watch for official news from the PBA through direct communications, pba.com and the PBA’s official social media outlets.

The United States Bowling Congress has also suspended all tournament activities, including postponements of several events directly impacting PBA members: the USBC Masters, USBC Open Championships, USBC Senior Masters and USBC Super Senior Classic.

PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: PERFECT GAME HELPS DANNY CLARK WIN FIRST PBA TITLE

Prior to the suspension of PBA Regional competition, Danny Clark of New Palestine, Ohio fired a 300 game in the position round match play finale as he defeated Dave Johnson of Ashtabula, Ohio by 207 pins to win the PBA50 Strike Zone Lanes Central Classic for his first PBA50 Regional title in Canton, Ohio on Sunday, March 8.

Clark finished with an 11-1 match play record and a total of 5,120 pins for 20 games, including match play bonus pins. Along with his first PBA50 Regional title, he also earned $2,100.

• Chris Collins of Myrtle Beach, S.C., defeated Chris Johnson of Nashville, N.C., 217-180, to take the $2,000 first prize in the PBA50 Fayetteville South Open at Lafayette Lanes in Fayetteville, N.C., on Sunday, March 8, improving his all-time PBA Regional titles record to 15.

Collins, who qualified No. 1 for the four-man stepladder finals with a 7-1 match play record and a 16-game total of 3,906 pins, had one of two perfect games in the event. Brett Caramagno of Goose Creek, S.C., had the other.

In the first stepladder match Johnson defeated Jimmy Jean of Kathleen, Ga., 172-155. Johnson then defeated Craig Auerbach of Sunrise, Fla., 203-194, to set up the championship match.

For an update on PBA Regional activity when it resumes, visit pba.com and open the “schedules” tab periodically to check on PBA Regional Tours.

Gid Rash Feb. 23QUICK NOTES

• Thomas (Gid) Rash and childhood friend Clay Copeland gave “thumbs up” signs in late February after Rash donated a kidney to Copeland in Fort Worth, Texas. Rash was the PBA Southwest Region’s 2019 Rookie of the Year.

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PBA Puts All Tournament Activity on Hiatus Due to Coronavirus Pandemic

by Bill Vint March 17, 2020 13:02

NEW YORK, N.Y. - The Professional Bowlers Association has placed all tournament activities at all levels on hiatus indefinitely due to coronavirus concerns, PBA CEO Colie Edison announced today. Included in the postponements is the start of the 2020 PBA Playoffs which were scheduled to start on April 6.

The announcement, made out of an abundance of preventative caution, means all PBA Tour, PBA50 Tour and PBA Regional tournaments currently scheduled will be put on hiatus as the PBA complies with decisions made nationally and locally in a concerted effort to help avoid “community spread” of the COVID-19 virus. All scheduled events will be re-evaluated in early April.

The PBA postponed the final match play elimination rounds and television finals of the Storm PBA World Series of Bowling XI animal pattern championships (Go Bowling Cheetah, Chameleon and Scorpion Championships) that were scheduled to take place at South Point Bowling Plaza in Las Vegas Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, allowing all competitors including several international bowlers to return home before federal airline restrictions took effect.

The PBA World Championship finals were conducted Sunday instead of Wednesday, as originally planned, because the five finalists were on hand in Las Vegas and wanted to complete the 2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour’s fourth major championship. Australia’s Jason Belmonte won the event before an audience consisting only of a handful of PBA players, tournament officials, and his own family including wife Kimberly, daughters Aria and Sylvie, and son Hugo who had flown in from Australia to watch. The finals aired live on FS1 and was the network’s most-watched telecast last week.

In addition to PBA’s decision, the United States Bowling Congress indefinitely postponed the USBC Masters that was scheduled for March 23-29 as well as the start of the 2020 USBC Open Championships, a traditional tournament for all USBC members including a number of PBA members who planned to participate.

“This is a completely unforeseen, unprecedented issue of global concern,” Edison said. “The PBA greatly appreciates the understanding and cooperation of its players, business partners, tournament hosts and all other parties impacted as we try to do our part in keeping everyone as safe as we can.”

As circumstances dictate, the PBA will make further announcements regarding the completion of the animal pattern championships, competition points races impacting the postponed PBA League Draft and qualifiers for the 2020 PBA Playoffs.

In the interim, fans can stay engaged with the PBA through its social media outlets (PBA on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and PBA on YouTube); by using the PBA App for mobile devices; the PBA Pro Bowling console game, and PBA.com.

FOX Sports also is planning multiple re-broadcasts of the PBA World Championship, PBA Tournament of Champions and Roth-Holman PBA Doubles Championship finals on its FS1 and FS2. Check your local listings for dates and times.

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PBA World Championship Finals to Air Live Sunday on FS1; WSOB XI Animal Pattern Finals Postponed

by Bill Vint March 13, 2020 17:15

LAS VEGAS - The PBA has modified plans for Storm World Series of Bowling XI finals in response to the coronavirus pandemic, enhancing the prize fund for the live PBA World Championship telecast on FS1 Sunday at 1:30 p.m. Eastern (10:30 a.m. Pacific), but postponing all additional competition in the three animal pattern championships.

The last-minute changes have been made out of an abundance of caution to ensure the safety of players, family members and tournament officials. International travel restrictions that may impact a number of World Series competitors also played a role in PBA’s decisions.

The changes include the following:

1) The match play eliminations and finals of the Go Bowling PBA Cheetah Championship, Chameleon Championship and Scorpion Championship will be postponed indefinitely. Details regarding completion of those events will be announced later.

2) The live PBA World Championship finals will include enhanced prize money of $150,000 to the winner, $70,000 for second place, $40,000 for third, $30,000 for fourth and $20,000 for fifth place. The finalists, from first to fifth seeds, respectively, are Jason Belmonte, EJ Tackett, Anthony Simonsen, Francois Lavoie and Chris Via. The finals will still be conducted with an audience limited to fellow players, family members and tournament officials.

3) FS1 will air the finals live on Sunday at 1:30 p.m. Eastern (10:30 a.m. Pacific) instead of next Wednesday, as originally planned.

4) A decision on the PBA’s 2020 competition points race, affecting the field of player who will qualify for the PBA Playoffs, will be announced later.

5) The PBA League Draft, scheduled for Sunday afternoon, also has been postponed and will be conducted at a later date.

The PBA announcement Friday comes on the heels of USBC’s announcement Thursday that the USBC Masters, originally scheduled for March 23-29 in Reno, has been postponed indefinitely.

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PBA to Limit WSOB XI Televised Finals to Players, Families, and Officials

by Bill Vint March 12, 2020 16:34

New York, NY – In accordance with the latest guidance from federal health organizations, the Professional Bowlers Association has decided the Storm WSOB XI will go on without spectators present during the tournament.

PBA CEO Colie Edison addressed the PBA’s position on dealing with the coronavirus outbreak that has created complex issues around the world, “It is with an abundance of caution and in cooperation with South Point that the PBA has decided the Storm WSOB XI televised finals will go on without spectators present during the tournaments. Attendance will be limited to competitors, players’ families and those in an official capacity only.

“We are thankful all of our loyal fans will be able to watch the finals of all WSOB XI events on FS1 and, internationally, on FloBowling’s livestreams.”

Please refer to pba.com for future updates.

About the PBA

The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) is the world’s preeminent organization dedicated to the sport of bowling and its professional competition, with thousands of members and millions of fans throughout the world. The PBA plays host to bowling’s biggest tournaments from the Go Bowling! PBA Tour, PBA Regional Tour, and PBA50 Tour. In 2019, the PBA was acquired by Bowlero Corporation, the world’s largest owner and operator of bowling entertainment centers with more than 300 locations throughout North America. For more information, please visit PBA.com.

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EJ Tackett Races Away to PBA World Championship Lead; Match Play Field of 16 Set for Thursday

by Bill Vint March 11, 2020 20:13

LAS VEGAS – After a combined 40 games bowled on four different lane conditions, the field of 40 PBA World Championship cashers was trimmed to 16 during Wednesday’s cashers round at the Storm PBA World Series of Bowling XI at South Point Bowling Plaza. And the leader of the pack heading into match play Thursday is EJ Tackett of Bluffton, Indiana, who raced away to a 246-pin lead during the cashers round.

Tackett, the 2013 PBA World Champion, completed the fourth round of qualifying with a 40-game total of 9,482 pins, averaging 237.05 pins to build a significant lead over Australia’s Jason Belmonte who posted a 9,236 total. Sweden’s Jesper Svensson, who came into the World Series on the heels of back-to-back victories in the Go Bowling Indianapolis Open and Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, was in third place, 14 pins behind Belmonte.

The top 16 World Championship qualifiers advance to round robin match play on Thursday. After a total of 56 games, including bonus pins earned in match play, the five leading scorers will advance to the PBA World Championship stepladder finals that will air live on FS1 on Wednesday, March 18, at 8 p.m. Eastern/5 p.m. Pacific.

The multi-event PBA World Series is being contested on 33-foot Cheetah, 39-foot Chameleon, 42-foot Scorpion and 43-foot Earl Anthony lane oiling patterns, forcing the starting field of 120 players from around the world to adapt to a variety of scoring challenges. All players also are working to earn competition points in each event toward qualifying for the upcoming PBA Playoffs and the annual PBA League draft.

FloBowling, the PBA’s official subscription-based online streaming service, is providing exclusive coverage of all WSOB qualifying and match play rounds. For subscription information, visit flobowling.com. Fans also can follow the World Series in real time on pba.com’s Live Scoring feature.

PBA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
(A Storm PBA World Series of Bowling XI/2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour Tier 1 event)
South Point Bowling Plaza, Las Vegas, Wednesday

Final Cashers Round Standings (after 40 qualifying games; top 16 advance to round robin match play Thursday)
1, EJ Tackett, Bluffton, Ind., 9,482.
2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 9,236.
3, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, 9,222.
4, Francois Lavoie, Canada, 9,146.
5, Anthony Simonsen, Little Elm, Texas, 9,140.
6, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 9,134.
7, Jakob Butturff, Tempe, Ariz., 9,129.
8, Brad Miller, Lees Summit, Mo., 9,123.
9, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., 9,107.
10, Darren Tang, Las Vegas, 9,106.
11, Bill O'Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 9,087.
12, Kyle Sherman, O'Fallon, Mo., 9,030.
13, Dom Barrett, England, 9,018.
14, BJ Moore, Greensburg, Pa., 9,014.
15, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 9,010.
16, Kris Prather, Plainfield, Ill., 8,966.
Failed to advance:
17, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 8,938, $5,200.
18, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 8,927, $5,000.
19, Jake Peters, Henderson, Nev., 8,925, $4,800.
20, AJ Chapman, Manchester, Iowa, 8,911, $4,600.
21, Jason Sterner, Rochester, N.Y., 8,907, $4,400.
22, AJ Johnson, Oswego, Ill., 8,892, $4,200.
23, Carsten Hansen, Denmark, 8,879, $4,100.
24, Richard Teece, England, 8,859, $4,000.
25, Josh Blanchard, Mesa, Ariz., 8,854, $3,750.
26, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 8,823, $3,650.
27, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 8,811, $3,550.
28, Andrew Anderson, Holly, Mich., 8,801, $3,450.
29, Michael Tang, Johnstown, Ohio, 8,798, $3,350.
30, Nathan Bohr, Austin, Texas, 8,790, $3,250.
31, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 8,766, $3,100.
32, Dick Allen, Lexington, S.C., 8,749, $3,000.
33, Patrick Girard, Canada, 8,745, $2,900.
34, Matthew McNiel, Minneapolis, 8,704, $2,800.
35, Rasmus Edvall, Sweden, 8,690, $2,750.
36, Kenneth Ryan, Farmingdale, N.J., 8,626, $2,700.
37, Arturo Quintero, Mexico, 8,617, $2,650.
38, Michael Davidson, Versailles, Ohio, 8,540, $2,600.
39, Ryan Ciminelli, Lancaster, S.C., 8,514, $2,550.
40, Matt Sanders, Evansville, Ind., 8,458, $2,500.
300 Games: Jason Belmonte (2), Richard Teece (2), Bill O’Neill, AJ Johnson.

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