Mark Roth of Fulton, one of the greatest bowlers in Professional Bowlers Association Tour history and a member of four Halls of Fame, died Friday at the age of 70 due to congestive heart failure and complications following a diagnosis of pneumonia.
A 34-time PBA Tour champion, Roth had been in poor health after suffering a massive stroke in 2009 that left him partially paralyzed on his left side.
Roth, who revolutionized the game in the 1970s and 1980s with his high-revving style, is ranked No. 5 all-time of the PBA’s list of “50 Greatest Players of the Last 50 Years.”
He was inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame in 1987, the United States Bowling Congress Hall of Fame in 2009, the New York State USBC Hall of Fame in 2010 and the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.
The Brooklyn native holds the PBA record with eight titles in a single season (1978) and won four PBA Player of the Year honors -- 1977, 1978, 1979 and 1984.
In 1980, he became the first bowler in history to convert the 7-10 split on a PBA Tour telecast, a feat that only has been accomplished four times since.
Among Roth’s PBA Tour titles were two major victories – the 1984 U.S. Open and PBA Touring Players Championship. He also went on to collect a pair of victories on the PBA50 Tour.
One of Roth’s biggest rivals on the lanes was fellow hall of famer Marshall Holman, but the two also were one of the sport’s most revered doubles teams.
They won three doubles titles together, and the PBA Tour schedule currently includes an event named in their honor – the PBA Roth/Holman Doubles Championship.
Roth is survived by his wife, Denise.
Photo above: Mark Roth, right, being inducted into the New York State USBC Hall of Fame in 2010 in Niagara Falls. Fran Bax, a director of the state association at the time, is at left. Photo by Mike Pettinella.