TAMARAC, Fla. – Hurricane Matthew’s arrival in south Florida last October forced postponement of the Professional Bowlers Association’s inaugural PBA Xtra Frame Reality Check Classic, but the delay turned into good news for Sawgrass Lanes and the Tamarac area.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, the tournament has been re-scheduled for March 17-19 as the kickoff event for a new eight-event Storm Cup Xtra Frame Tour series in 2017. In addition to competing for prize money and a PBA Tour title in Tamarac, all PBA members will compete for points toward $50,000 in end-of-season Storm Cup bonus money.
As part of PBA’s Xtra Frame Tour series, the Reality Check Classic will be live streamed around the world on the organization’s online, subscription-based bowling channel. Bowling fans can watch the entire event for as little as $3.99 for a three-day subscription (or for roughly $1.25 a week, have access to hundreds of hours of PBA, PBA50 and PWBA women’s tournament programming for a full year). Visit xtraframe.tv for details.
More than 100 of the PBA’s best-known stars will be on hand at Sawgrass Lanes. Among the established veterans already entered are 18-time PBA Tour titlist Tommy Jones, superstar Walter Ray Williams Jr., England’s Dom Barrett and PBA Tour titlists Dick Allen, Josh Blanchard, Ryan Ciminelli, Tom Daugherty, Bob Learn Jr., Bill O’Neill and Ronnie Russell. Representing PBA’s legion of emerging young stars will be 2016 Player of the Year EJ Tackett, two-hander Kyle Troup and former Rookie of the Year Marshall Kent. A significant number of top amateurs and collegiate bowlers also will be in the field, bowling as non-members.
The XF Storm Cup series provides unique incentives for PBA members to compete in all eight of the series events and encourages performances at a high level in every event because every point earned will be meaningful in the chase for shares of the end-of-season bonus pool.
Competition will be intense because points awarded to the top 20 players in each Xtra Frame event begin with the winner earning 25 points, second place 19, third place 18, etc., with points declining by one through 20th place. In 2016, the points race was decided in the final event when Jones won by five points over Tackett, who led by three points going into the finale, and by six points over Ciminelli, who led early in the series.
Following the Reality Check Classic, the Xtra Frame PBA Tour series will include stops in North Carolina, Arkansas, Texas, Tennessee, Virginia and Delaware before its final event in Coldwater, Ohio, in late August. Fans will be able to track XF Storm Cup news and current point standings on a special link on pba.com once the series gets underway.
PBA XTRA FRAME REALITY CHECK CLASSIC
Sawgrass Lanes, Tamarac, Fla., March 17-19
Friday, March 17
3 p.m. - Practice session
4:15 p.m. – First-time players’ orientation meeting
6 p.m. – Pro-am
Saturday, March 18
9 a.m. – A Squad, eight qualifying games
2:30 p.m. – B Squad, eight qualifying games
Top one-third after eight games advance to Cashers Round
Sunday, March 19
8:30 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 to stepladder finals
3 p.m. – Top 4 stepladder finals