Serious bowling fans will never forget Mike Edwards' first title match on the PBA Tour — a heartbreaking loss stemming mainly from a 4-9 split on a very good shot.
Who knows how much that contributed to a solid career that fell short of what many expected early in the career of the stylish Edwards, who won his lone PBA Tour title in 1994.
Edwards' first title match on the PBA Senior Tour had a much different outcome — a satisfying victory in the United States Bowling Congress Senior Masters on a 701-691 title match win over Hugh Miller, according to this USBC news release.
Edwards, a "rookie" competing in just his second Senior Tour event, was the undefeated top seed in the major tournament at South Point in Las Vegas and Miller would have to have beaten him twice to take the title.
"This is validation to let me know that I'm legitimately back because I have had a rough year and a half," Edwards said in the release. "My father died five months ago, and I really lost my passion for bowling. I hope that the Senior Tour will revitalize my career, especially now that I've won a major."
Miller could have struck out in the 10th frame of the third game to win by one pin over Edwards, but after striking on his first shot, the lefty left a 6-pin.
"Sitting on the bench to win has never happened to me," Edwards said in the release. "It didn't hit me for a second, and I had to add up the score again real quick. I don't think it has sunk in yet."
Miller beat Hall of Famer Amleto Monacelli of Venezuela 634-571 to earn the right to bowl Edwards, after Monacelli crushed 69-year-old Gary Dickinson 771-538, leaving the 2-time Senior Masters champ in fourth.
The Senior Masters home page is here.
2012 USBC SENIOR MASTERS
South Point Bowling Center, Las Vegas Friday's results
Double elimination, 3-game matches decided by total pinfall (Name/hometown followed by 3-game pinfall total)
ROUND 6 ELIMINATION BRACKET
(Losers eliminated, earn $1,900)
Larry Popp, Marion, Ohio, def. Tom Carter, Rockford, Ill., 645-514 Crister Danielsson, Sweden def. Pete Thomas, Oklahoma City, 690-658 Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala, Fla., def. Paul Appling, Camarillo, Calif., 703-614 Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela def. Mike Dias, Lafayette, Colo., 662-639
ROUND 4 WINNERS BRACKET
Hugh Miller, Mercer Island, Wash., def. Gary Dickinson, Edmond, Okla., 637-545 Mike Edwards, Tulsa, Okla., def. Charlie Tapp, Portage, Mich., 738-670
ROUND 7 ELIMINATION BRACKET
(Losers eliminated, earn $2,400)
Danielsson def. Popp, 670-585
Monacelli def. Williams, 724-676
ROUND 8 ELIMINATION BRACKET
(Losers eliminated, tie for fifth, earn $3,400)
Dickinson def. Danielsson, 646-562
Monacelli def. Tapp, 707-608
ROUND 5 WINNERS BRACKET
(Winner advances to championship match)
Edwards def. Miller, 620-603
ROUND 9 ELIMINATION BRACKET
(Loser eliminated, finishes fourth, earns $4,600)
Monacelli def. Dickinson, 771-538
ROUND 10 ELIMINATION BRACKET
(Winner advances to championship match; Loser eliminated, finishes third, earns $6,000)
Miller def. Monacelli, 634-571
(Winner earns $16,000; Loser finishes second, earns $8,000)
Edwards def. Miller, 701-691