U.S. Open to bring out the best of bowling's professionals; finals to air live next Wednesday
The U.S. Open, professional bowling’s true test of versatility and stamina, opened its weeklong run at Victory Lanes Family Recreation Center in Mooresville, N.C., on Wednesday.
Competition the Professional Bowlers Association’s last tournament of the season -- arguably the “crown jewel” of major tournaments – continues through Oct. 30 with the stepladder finals broadcast live at 8 p.m. on the CBS Sports Network.
Dom Barrett of England is attempting to defend his title, while Jason Belmonte of Australia and Jakob Butturff of Chandler, Ariz., each hope to bowl well enough to capture PBA Player of the Year honors.
The 144-player field features several New Yorkers, including Justin Wyman of Fairport, who advanced through yesterday’s eight-game PTQ (Pro Tournament Qualifier) and Jason Sterner of Rochester.
Household names on the roster include Chris Barnes, Parker Bohn III, Ryan Ciminelli, Norm Duke, Tommy Jones, Marshall Kent, Wes Malott, Bill O’Neill, Rhino Page, Sean Rash, Anthony Simonsen, EJ Tackett, Pete Weber and Walter Ray Williams Jr.
Qualifying consists of three eight-game rounds – all on different oil patterns – before the field is cut to the top 36 bowlers. Those advancing then roll eight more games of qualifying, with the top 24 advancing to match play.
It doesn’t get any easier from there as those 24 will bowl 24 games of round-robin match play with the top five making the TV show. Adding another degree of difficulty, the Round of 36, match play and stepladder finals will be bowled on a fourth lane condition.
All rounds (except the stepladder finals) can be seen live on FloBowling.
The schedule is as follows (all times Eastern):
Wednesday, Oct. 23 -- 9 a.m. - PTQ
Friday, Oct. 25 -- 8 a.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad A (eight games); 1 p.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad B (eight games); 6 p.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad C (eight games).
Saturday, Oct. 26 -- 8 a.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad B (eight games); 1 p.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad C (eight games); 6 p.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad A (eight games).
Sunday, Oct. 27 -- 8 a.m. – Qualifying Round 3, Squad C (eight games); 1 p.m. – Qualifying Round 3, Squad A (eight games); 6 p.m. – Qualifying Round 3, Squad B (eight games).
Monday, Oct. 28 -- 10 a.m. – Round of 36 (eight games); 5 p.m. – Match Play Round 1 (eight games).
Tuesday, Oct. 29 -- 10 a.m. – Match Play Round 2 (eight games); 5 p.m. – Match Play Round 3 (eight games).
Wednesday, Oct. 30 -- 8 p.m. – Stepladder Finals (top five) – Broadcast live on CBS Sports Network.
TOMMY JONES ENTERS PBA HALL OF FAME
As I expected, 19-time title winner Tommy Jones of Simpsonville, S.C., was unanimously elected to the Professional Bowlers Association Hall of Fame last week.
Jones was voted in to the Superior Performance category by a panel of veteran bowling writers (that includes this writer) and PBA Hall of Famers. He will be enshrined on Jan. 18 at the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame and the Arlington (Texas) Hilton as part of PBA Hall of Fame Classic tournament weekend.
Joining Jones in the Class of 2020 will be former PBA ownership partners Mike Slade and Rob Glaser (both for Meritorious Service).
Followers of the PBA will recall that Slade and Glaser joined forces with Chris Peters to purchase the PBA in 2000. The trio of former Microsoft executives pooled their money at the time to keep the PBA from having to file bankruptcy.
Jones is one of five PBA players to win both PBA Rookie (2001-02) and Player of the Year (2005-06) honors and has earned more than $1.7 million in his 20-year PBA career. The 41-year-old power player owns 17 standard PBA Tour titles plus two majors: the 2006 U.S. Open and 2007 PBA Tournament of Champions.
ALBION, MOUNT MORRIS TEAMS OFF TO HOT START
The Oak Orchard Bowl I team from Albion and the Mount Morris team won 22 and 21 points, respectively, on Oct. 13 as the Genesee Region Youth Travel League got under way at Mount Morris Lanes.
Oak Orchard Bowl I defeated Oak Orchard Bowl II, 22-6, as Paige Snook led the way with 222-202-165—589. Ben Lennox posted a 559 series for Oak Orchard II.
Mount Morris Lanes downed Perry Bowling Center, 21-7, as Austin Hawker rolled a 587 series. Dennis Van Duser led the way for Perry with a 213 game and 591 series.
Individually, Tony Sprague of Mancuso Strike Force took top honors with a 228 game and 632 series while teammate Emma Miller paced the girls with a 245 game and 592 series. Jillian Menzie of Rose Garden Bowl I notched a 205 game and 549 series.
The league resumes at 12:45 p.m. this Sunday at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.
A meeting of the Genesee Region USBC board of directors is scheduled at T.F. Brown’s for 12:30 p.m. Sunday.
HANDICAP BRACKET CHALLENGE SET FOR SATURDAY
The Genesee Region USBC has had trouble getting an early-season tournament off the ground in recent years, but is hoping for a decent turnout this Saturday for the first Handicap Bracket Challenge event at Mancuso Bowling Center.
The tournament, scheduled for noon, features all match play – two-game matches from start to finish. As of Wednesday, 24 names were on the list of entrants at the bowling center.
It’s not too late to enter – just call Mancuso’s at 558-343-1319 or send an email to [email protected]. The entry fee is $35.
Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen is hosting a Tommy Kress 60-and-Over Tour event on Sunday with squads at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. For more information about the scratch singles tournament, contact Kress at [email protected].
Future local tournaments include:
Saturday, Sunday, Nov. 2-3 – GRUSBC Gladys Ford Senior Women, Perry Bowling Center
Sunday, Nov. 3 – GRUSBC Senior Masters, Mount Morris Lanes
Sunday, Nov. 10 – Rochester/GRUSBC BVL, Pleasure Lanes, Hilton
Saturday, Nov. 16 -- Brian Morasco Memorial 3 –person handicap, Mancuso Bowling Center
Sunday, Nov. 17 -- Triple O Mechanical Handicap Singles, Rose Garden Bowl, Bergen
CLARENCE LEAGUE HONORS JOE TRIGILIO; MEMORIALS
I recently learned that the Cornerstone League on Monday nights at Clarence Bowling Center has changed its name to the Joe Triggs Memorial League in honor of Joe Trigilio, Genesee Region USBC Hall of Famer who passed away on Sept. 1.
Joe bowled in the league for the past few years along with several other Batavia-area bowlers. This year’s league roster includes local bowlers Matt Balduf, Dean Cadieux Jr., Fred Gravanda, Geoff Harloff, Mike Johnson, Rich Mortellaro, Steve O’Dell, Jim Pursel and Scott Shields.
It is heartwarming to know – and not surprising at all -- that Joe was thought highly enough by the Greater Buffalo USBC league officials to continue his legacy in this way.
Condolences to the families of longtime area bowlers who left us in the past few weeks:
-- Robert “Bob” Radley of Batavia, a steady member of the Polish Falcons and 55 Alive leagues at Mancuso Bowling Center;
-- Bernice George of North Java, a Sunday Mixed League bowler for many years at the former Valley View Lanes in Warsaw and, more recently, at Letchworth Pines in Portageville;
-- Dorothy “Dot” Koziej of Batavia, a standout bowler in the 1970s and ‘80s who worked for several years at Mancuso Bowling Center (then Mancuso Lanes).
-- James “Jim” Marciniak of Corfu, a scratch league bowler for many years with numerous honor scores and awards to his credit.
I feel it is important to remember those who have contributed so much to the sport of bowling in the Genesee Region. I invite any and all readers to inform me of a bowler’s passing so I can include his or her name in this column. I can be reached at [email protected].