The 11th Frame Blog en-us 2014 Jeff Richgels' 11th Frame blog. 6852 The 11th Frame: Mike Fagan, Chris Colella, Shannon O’Keefe, Kayla Johnson earn spots on Team USA for 2015 at Summer Team USA Trials <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Mike Fagan, Chris Colella, Shannon O&rsquo;Keefe and Kayla Johnson earned spots on Team USA for 2015 on Sunday as the United States Bowling Congress Summer Team USA Trials concluded at the International Training and Research Center, USBC reported.</span></p> <p>The top two men and top two women earned the automatic spots on Team USA in 2015. The remainder of the Team USA roster will be determined and announced at January&rsquo;s Team USA Trials at the Orleans in Las Vegas.</p> <p>Fagan led the men with 3,384 for 15 games over three rounds on short (WTBA Beijing), medium (WTBA Montreal) and long (WTBA Paris) patterns. Colella was next with 3,344, holding off Matt McNiel at 3,313 for the second spot.</p> <p>"First, I want to congratulate Chris Colella for making the team because he bowled amazing all weekend," Fagan, a Team USA veteran and PBA Tour star, said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this USBC news release</strong></a>. "I excelled on the short pattern, which has normally been where I struggle, so I was proud of myself there. Today on the long, I struggled so I was really glad to pull through and fight my way to make Team USA again."</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Colella, who competes for Wichita State, earned a spot on Team USA for the first time and told USBC that ongoing tryouts for the Shockers team helped prepare him for the event.</span></p> <p>"I really don't have a feeling for making Team USA yet, I'm just really excited and proud," Colella said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the USBC release</strong></a>. "We're doing our tryouts for Wichita State right now and we are through our first week, so that really sharpened me up for this."</p> <p>O'Keefe dominated the women&rsquo;s field at 3,305, while Johnson was second at 3,185 and Ashly Galante third at 3,107.</p> <p>O&rsquo;Keefe, the new women&rsquo;s coach at McKendree, will be on Team USA for the 11<sup>th</sup> straight year.</p> <p>"It never gets old, and winning this is like making the team for the first time," O'Keefe said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the USBC release</strong></a>. "Now I can just relax the rest of the year, coach my team at McKendree and not have to worry about making the team in January."</p> <p>Johnson made the team for the second consecutive year through the Summer Team USA Trials &ndash; she represented Team USA at the Pan American Sports Festival earlier this summer.</p> <p>"I think more than anything finally having a two-time in front of my name for this accomplishment feels good," Johnson said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the USBC release</strong></a>. "I learned a lot over this past year, coming to team camp and representing our country in Mexico, and I hope to continue to learn on this journey."</p> <p>All of the competition was webcast live by BowlTV.&nbsp; The archive of the third round for men is <a href=";feature" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a> and the archive of the third round for women is <a href=";feature" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The Summer Team USA Trials page is <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</span>&nbsp;</p> <hr /> <p><strong><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">USBC SUMMER TEAM USA TRIALS<br /></span></strong><em><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">International Training and Research Center, Arlington, Texas&nbsp;<br /></span></em><strong><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Final results</span></strong></p> <p><strong>MEN</strong><br /><em>(15 games, top two earn spots on Team USA 2015)<br /></em>1, Michael Fagan, Hurst, Texas, 3,384.<br />2, Chris Colella, Templeton, Mass., 3,344.</p> <p>3, Matt McNiel, Prior Lake, Minn., 3,313.<br />4, Devin Bidwell, Wichita, Kan., 3,301.<br />5, Vince Biondo, Carpentersville, Ill., 3,281.<br />6, Nathan Bohr, Austin, Texas, 3,280.<br />7, Cory Simmons, Wichita, Kan., 3,272.<br />8, Justin Bui, Terrytown, La., 3,233.<br />9, Bryant Ezell, Fayetteville, Ark., 3,166.<br />10, Miguel Lopez, Wichita, Kan., 3,164.<br />11, Kevin Andes, Wichita, Kan., 3,149.<br />12, Thomas Berish III, Cordova, Tenn., 3,136.<br />13, Matthew Farber, Plainview, N.Y., 3,119.<br />14, Erik Gulbrandson, Wichita, Kan., 3,118.<br />15, Brian Lake, Irving , Texas, 3,052.<br />16, Michael Bailey, Allen, Texas, 3,050.<br />17, Roger Petrin, Bel Aire, Kan., 3,041.<br />18, Thomas Berish Jr, Cordova, Tenn., 3,019.<br />19, Brandon Biondo, Carpentersville, Ill., 3,015.<br />20, George Duke, Vidor, Texas, 2,951.<br />21, Alex Clark, Taylorville, Ill., 2,887.<br />22, Robert Costabile, Grand Prairie, Texas, 2,770.<br />23, Andrew Bonin, Greenwood, AR, 2,754.<br />24, Jamal Hamam, Irving , Texas, 2,703.<br />25, Paul Bober, Morton Grove, Ill., 2,689.<br />26, Andrew Lowy, Mansfield, Texas, 2,646.<br />27, Kevin Blackmer, Spring , Texas, 2,637.<br />28, Jesse Konczos, Cleveland, Ohio, 2,590.<br />29, Leo Mulligan, Columbia, N.J., 2,514.<br />30, Chris Kliczinski, Pinckney, Mich., 1,713 (W/D).</p> <p><strong>WOMEN</strong><br /><em>(15 games, top two earn spots on Team USA 2015)<br /></em>1, Shannon O'Keefe, O'Fallon, Ill., 3,305.<br />2, Kayla Johnson, Washington, Ill., 3,185.</p> <p>3, Ashly Galante, Palm Harbor, Fla., 3,107.<br />4, Christina Halen, Kennesaw, Ga., 3,092.<br />5, Stefanie Johnson, Grand Prairie, Texas, 3,059.<br />6, Kimi Davidson, Irving, Texas, 3,035.<br />7, Brandy Silva, Fort Worth, Texas, 3,011.<br />8, Erin McCarthy, Omaha, Neb., 2,999.<br />9, Ashley Rucker, Bartlesville, Okla., 2,995.<br />10, Grace Hall, Oklahoma City, Okla., 2,982.<br />11, Heather Penatzer, Tucson, Ariz., 2,944.<br />12, Samantha Kelly, Streamwood, Ill., 2,854.<br />13, Dayna Mackie, Glendale Heights, Ill., 2,843.<br />14, Holly Harris, Wichita, Kan., 2,796.<br />15, Catie Jensen, Fort Worth, Texas, 2,749.<br />16, Anna Groce, Kernersville, N.C., 2,745.<br />17, Suzana Signaigo, Fort Worth, Texas, 2,742.<br />18, Ashley Lawley, Friendswood, Texas, 2,645.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Sun, 31 Aug 2014 23:00:00 -0600 6851 The 11th Frame: Mike Fagan holds lead, Stefanie Johnson takes lead after 2nd round of Summer Team USA Trials <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Mike Fagan maintained his lead and Stefanie (Nation) Johnson moved into the lead after the second round of the 2014 United States Bowling Congress Summer Team USA Trials on Saturday, USBC reported in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release</strong></a>.</span></p> <p>The third and final round is Sunday at the International Training and Research Center, with live webcast coverage on's BowlTV.</p> <p>Fagan has a 9-game total of 2,108 to lead the men, with Chris Colella second at 2,030 and Justin Bui third with 2,005.</p> <p>Johnson moved from fourth to first with a 287 final game Saturday for a 1,925 total. Kayla Johnson &nbsp;is second with 1,912, and Ashley Rucker third at 1,891.</p> <p>The top two men and top two women after 15 games will earn automatic spots on Team USA 2015.</p> <p>Friday&rsquo;s first round was three games on the short pattern, the WTBA Beijing pattern, Saturday&rsquo;s second round was six games on the medium pattern, the WTBA Montreal pattern, and Sunday&rsquo;s third round is six games on the long pattern, the WTBA Paris pattern.</p> <p>The top two men and top two women after 15 games will earn automatic spots on Team USA for 2015.</p> <p>Full results for the 30 men are&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>&nbsp;and full results for the 18 women are&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">All of the competition is being webcast live from the International Training and Research Center by's BowlTV.</span></p> <p>The archive of the second round for men is <a href=";feature" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a> and for women is <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The Summer Trials page is&nbsp;</span><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">.</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Sat, 30 Aug 2014 23:00:00 -0600 6850 The 11th Frame: Mike Fagan, Ashley Rucker lead after opening round of Summer Team USA Trials <p>PBA Tour star and Team USA member Mike Fagan and Ashley Rucker of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, took the lead after Friday&rsquo;s opening round of the 2014 United States Bowling Congress Summer Team USA Trials, USBC reported in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release</strong></a>.</p> <p>Competing on the short pattern, the WTBA Beijing pattern, Fagan led the men with 749 for three games and Rucker led the women with 633.</p> <p>Corey Simmons was second for the men with 689 and Kevin Andes was third at 668, while Team USA member Shannon O'Keefe was second for the women with 603 and Christina Halen was third at 582.</p> <p>Full results for the 30 men are <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a> and full results for the 18 women are <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>Saturday&rsquo;s second round is six games on the medium pattern, the WTBA Montreal pattern, and Sunday&rsquo;s third round is six games on the long pattern, the WTBA Paris pattern.</p> <p>The top two men and top two women after 15 games will earn automatic spots on Team USA for 2015.</p> <p>All of the competition is being webcast live from the International Training and Research Center by's BowlTV.</p> <p>The archive of the first round for men is <a href=";feature" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a> and for women is <a href=";feature" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>The Summer Trials page is <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:00:00 -0600 6849 The 11th Frame: Member-only Players Championship, Doubles highlight PBA Tour ESPN schedule for 2014-15 <p>There are two bonus surprises on the 2014-15 ESPN TV schedule announced Friday by the PBA.</p> <p>All of the expected tournaments were there, including the three majors that will air live and four PBA League shows to end the season.</p> <p>But there were two weeks that were not accounted for in what had been announced vs. how many shows were scheduled.</p> <p>Those tournaments were revealed to be revivals of the PBA Players Championship on Sunday, Feb. 22 and the Mark Roth/Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship on Sunday, March 1.</p> <p>PBA Commissioner Tom Clark said in a message that both tournaments would be for PBA members only and additional details, including the sites of the competition, would be announced next week.</p> <p>The old Touring Players Championship was considered the fifth major when it was held and the Doubles always was a popular tournament for players and fans.</p> <p>The season begins Dec. 14 with the first of four animal pattern championships, continues with the rest of the World Series of Bowling tournaments, including the PBA World Championship on Jan. 11, and then the Chris Paul Invitational on Super Bowl Sunday.</p> <p>The United States Bowling Congress Masters and 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Championships follow on Feb. 8 and 15, then the Players Championship and Doubles Championship before a three-week break that precedes the PBA League shows.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>This PBA news release</strong></a> has all the details, including that the broadcast team of Mike Jakubowski, color analyst Randy Pedersen and sideline reporter Kimberly Pressler will return.</p> <p>All of the 2014-15 ESPN telecasts will be two hours except for the four PBA animal pattern championships which will be 4-player, hour-long shows, as I reported in <a href="../../../news/article/6835" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>, and the Chris Paul PBA Invitational, which will be a 90-minute telecast.</p> <p>The Jan. 25 telecast of the World Bowling Tour Finals will be on ESPN2.</p> <p>The U.S. Open is not part of the schedule, but it wasn't necessarily supposed to be when USBC and BPAA came together to save it, as <a href="../../../news/article/6649" target="_blank"><strong>I reported here</strong></a>. The Open previously has been on ESPN outside the PBA Tour schedule and that appears to be what will happen again this year.</p> <hr /> <p><strong>ESPN-PBA TELEVISION SCHEDULE</strong><br /><em>(All times are Eastern)</em><br />Sunday, Dec. 14 &ndash; GEICO WSOB VI PBA Cheetah Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Dec. 21 &ndash; GEICO WSOB VI PBA Viper Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Dec. 28 &ndash; GEICO WSOB VI PBA Chameleon Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Jan. 4 &ndash; GEICO WSOB VI PBA Scorpion Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Jan. 11 &ndash; GEICO WSOB VI PBA World Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Jan. 18 &ndash; GEICO WSOB VI PBA Challenge (PBA50 Tour Finals, PBA Women&rsquo;s Regional Finals, <br />BA Regional Finals, Teen Masters Grand Championship), 3 p.m.<br />Sunday, Jan. 25 (ESPN2) &ndash;GEICO WSOB VI World Bowling Tour Men&rsquo;s and Women&rsquo;s Finals presented by <br />BA, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Feb. 1 &ndash; Chris Paul PBA Celebrity Invitational, 4:30 p.m.<br />Sunday, Feb. 8 &ndash; United States Bowling Congress Masters, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Feb. 15 &ndash; 50th anniversary Barbasol PBA Tournament of Championships, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, Feb. 22 &ndash; PBA Players Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, March 1 &ndash;Mark Roth/Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, 1 p.m.<br />Sunday, March 29 &ndash; PBA League Quarterfinals, 4:30 p.m.<br />Sunday, April 5 &ndash; PBA League Quarterfinals, 3:30 p.m.<br />Sunday, April 12 &ndash; PBA League Semifinals, 2 p.m.<br />Sunday, April 19 &ndash; PBA League Elias Cup Finals, 1 p.m.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 15:45:00 -0600 6848 The 11th Frame: Details for 2015 PBA League announced <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">In </span><a style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;" href="../../../news/article/6835" target="_blank"><strong>this recent blog</strong></a><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">, PBA Commissioner Tom Clark provided some general information on the 2015 PBA League, which will be taped early next year in Maine and air as the final four shows of the year on ESPN on March 29 and April 5, 12 and 19.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>He said the league would be completely redrafted by last year&rsquo;s managers for their franchises, and provided the basic format of the competition.</p> <p>The shows will be two quarterfinal matches on each of two shows, then two semis on one show and the title match on one show. The format for the first three shows will be 2-game Baker matches, while the title match will be singles (10 bonus pins to the winner), doubles (15 bonus pins), trios (20 bonus pins) and team (50 bonus pins) like in the 2014 PBA League.</p> <p>On Thursday, PBA in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release</strong></a> announced the specifics for the 2015 PBA League, including the list of draft eligible players, which appears at the bottom of this blog. The list includes the top 50 in points starting with the 2013 World Series of Bowling and ending with the 2014 Oklahoma Grand Casino and Resort Summer Swing, plus four players who were in the PBA League in 2014 but didn&rsquo;t make that top 50 in points.</p> <p>PBA said that in the 2015 PBA League playoffs, players will compete for a projected $250,000 in prize money.</p> <p>PBA said the draft will be webcast live from the World Series of Bowling on Xtra Frame on Halloween.</p> <p>The PBA League will be taped March 28-29 so at least the first show will be close enough to airing that it will seem live &mdash; i.e. it will be relatively easy to avoid knowing the results.</p> <p>The team managers and franchises are Mark Baker (defending Elias Cup champion Silver Lake Atom Splitters), Carolyn Dorin-Ballard (GEICO New York City WTT KingPins), Johnny Petraglia (Brooklyn STyLES), Norm Duke (Dallas Strikers), Tim Mack (Pittsburgh Jack Rabbits), Jason Couch (Philadelphia Hitmen), Andrew Cain (L.A. X) and Del Ballard Jr. (Barbasol Motown Muscle).</p> <p>For the draft, eligible players will be ranked based upon their position on the points list. The first player elected by each team must be taken from the group of players ranking 1-10 on the points list. The second player drafted will come from the group ranked 11-20 in points, plus any undrafted players from group one, and so on for each grouping of 10. One draft exception will be Dallas player-manager Norm Duke, who finished 39th on the points list and will draft himself in the fourth round.</p> <p>Draft-eligible players must declare their desire to participate in the PBA League, starting Oct. 1 and by Oct. 15.</p> <p>The draft order will be determined by random draw and be in &ldquo;serpentine&rdquo; format, with the order reversing each round.</p> <hr /> <p><strong>2015 PBA LEAGUE SCHEDULE</strong></p> <p><strong>Friday, October 31</strong><br />PBA League Draft, South Point Bowling Center, Las Vegas (live coverage on Xtra Frame)</p> <p><strong>Competition Schedule, Bayside Bowl, Portland, Maine</strong><br /><strong>Friday, March 27</strong><br />9 a.m. &ndash; Practice Session<br />Tba &ndash; Pro-Am squads</p> <p><strong>Saturday, March 28 <br /></strong><em>(best of two games, Baker format; one-ball roll-off to break ties)</em><br />Noon &ndash; Quarterfinal Match One: Team 1 vs. Team 8<br /> Quarterfinal Match Two: Team 5 vs. Team 4<br />4:30 P.M. &ndash; Quarterfinal Match Three: Team 2 vs. Team 7<br /> Quarterfinal Match Four: Team 6 vs. Team 3</p> <p><strong>Sunday, March 29</strong><br />Noon &ndash; Semifinal Match One: Winner Match One vs. Winner Match Two (best of two games, Baker<br /> format; one-ball roll-off to break ties)<br /> Semifinal Match Two: Winner Match Three vs. Winner Match Four (best of two games, Baker<br /> format; one-ball roll-off to break ties)<br />4:30 p.m. &ndash; Elias Cup Finals: Winner Semifinal One vs. Winner Semifinal Two, total pinfall (singles,<br /> 10 bonus pins; alternate-shot doubles, 15 bonus pins; trios, 20 bonus pins; Baker team,<br /> 50 bonus pins)</p> <p><strong>2015 PBA LEAGUE DRAFT-ELIGIBLE LIST</strong><br /><em>(based upon PBA Tour competition points earned between 2013 WSOB IV and 2014 PBA Summer Swing)</em></p> <p><strong>PBAL Group One</strong><br />1, Jason Belmonte, 138,842<br />2, Dom Barrett, 101,973<br />3, E.J. Tackett, 71,757<br />4, Sean Rash, 69,465<br />5, Wes Malott, 67,665<br />6, Tom Smallwood, 64,909<br />7, Pete Weber, 62,824<br />8, Bill O'Neill, 61,324<br />9, Chris Barnes, 60,008<br />10, Ryan Ciminelli, 55,551</p> <p><strong>PBAL Group Two</strong><br />11, Tommy Jones, 49,557<br />12, Mike Fagan, 47,609<br />13, Ronnie Russell, 40,795<br />14, Dick Allen, 38,557<br />15, Mika Koivuniemi, 38,312<br />16, Chris Loschetter, 37,853<br />17, Dan MacLelland, 33,955<br />18, Stuart Williams, 33,396<br />19, Tom Daugherty, 29,836<br />20, Josh Blanchard, 28,529</p> <p><strong>PBAL Group Three</strong><br />21, Dave Wodka, 27,129<br />22, Martin Larsen, 26,777<br />23, Michael Haugen, 26,634<br />24, Thomas Larsen, 25,653<br />25, Parker Bohn, 25,579<br />26, D.J. Archer 25,070<br />27, Brian Valenta, 24,034<br />28, Brian Kretzer, 22,806<br />29, Shawn Maldonado, 22,190<br />30, Nathan Bohr, 22,054</p> <p><strong>PBAL Group Four</strong><br />31, Jake Peters, 21,780<br />32, Jason Sterner, 21,759<br />33, Tom Baker, 21,546<br />34, Ryan Shafer, 21,386<br />35, Walter Ray Williams Jr., 21,186<br />36, Lee Vanderhoef, 21,054<br />37, Scott Norton, 20,717<br />38. Patrick Allen. 20.600<br />39, Norm Duke, 20,543<br />40, John Szczerbinski, 19,444</p> <p><strong>PBAL Group Five</strong><br />41, Eugene McCune, 19,387<br />42, Craig Nidiffer, 18,826<br />43, Bryon Smith, 18,218<br />44, Osku Palermaa, 17,076<br />45, Rhino Page, 16,860<br />46, Dino Castillo, 16,684<br />47, Clara Guerrero, 16,262<br />48, Anthony Lavery-Spahr, 15,726<br />49, Jesse Buss, 15,168<br />50, Andres Gomez, 15,067</p> <p><strong>2014 PBAL team member</strong><br />53, Michael Machuga, 14,279<br />57, Mike DeVaney, 13,035<br />63, Amleto Monacelli, 11,337<br />77, Mike Scroggins, 9,262</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p><a class="profileLink" href="" data-hovercard="/ajax/hovercard/page.php?id=1385435285016656"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="color: #0066cc;">PBA League - New York City WTT Kingpins</span></span></a> for life... If I'm not on the Kingpins next year, I'm not bowling the League. Just thought I'd throw that out there. We are doing this PBA league because they want to watch us come together as a team. Well, my teammates are <a class="profileLink" href="" data-hovercard="/ajax/hovercard/user.php?id=100007706525047"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="color: #0066cc;">Stuart Williams</span></span></a> <a class="profileLink" href="" data-hovercard="/ajax/hovercard/user.php?id=46107933"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="color: #0066cc;">John Szczerbinski</span></span></a> <a class="profileLink" href="" data-hovercard="/ajax/hovercard/user.php?id=501547619"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="color: #0066cc;">Jake Peters</span></span></a> and <a class="profileLink" href="" data-hovercard="/ajax/hovercard/user.php?id=100002017471212"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><span style="color: #0066cc;">Pete Weber</span></span></a>. No offense to the rest of the field, but I will stand by those guys any day of the week. Team competition is fun for the camaraderie, for having people be able to get behind a group of guys and root them on. Very disappointed...</p> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 04:00:00 -0600 6847 The 11th Frame: BowlTV to webcast as Summer Team USA Trials begin Friday <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">'s BowlTV will be webcasting the competition at the United States Bowling Congress Summer Team USA Trials, which start Friday, according to <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release from USBC</strong></a>.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Two men's and two women's spots on Team USA for 2015 will be up for grabs in the event at the International Training and Research Center. The first action is a</span><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">t 3:30 p.m. Central time on Friday.</span></p> <p>The event is three games Friday and six each on Saturday and Sunday, with total pins the determining factor.</p> <p>Long, medium and short patterns from the World Tenpin Bowling Association bank of patterns will be used.</p> <p>For more information on the Summer Team USA Trials, go <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 04:00:00 -0600 6845 The 11th Frame: 3rd annual Ballard vs. The Big ‘C’ fundraiser set for Sept. 13 <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">PBA and USBC Hall of Famer Del Ballard has dealt with cancer and heart surgery over the last few years and still is alive and fighting, and part of that fight includes raising money to help the battle against cancer.</span></p> <p>His signature event is the Ballard vs. The Big &ldquo;C&rdquo; bowling event, which will be held for the third time on Saturday, Sept. 13 from noon to 5 p.m. &nbsp;at AMF Euless, 1901 W. Airport Freeway in Euless, Texas.</p> <p>Team of four members can enter the event for $200.</p> <p>In two years, BVBC has raised more than $75,000.</p> <p>For more information, go <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the event&rsquo;s Facebook page here</strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Wed, 27 Aug 2014 04:00:00 -0600 6846 The 11th Frame: No 4th wrist surgery for this guy — at least for now <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">When I got a cortisone shot for my aching 3-operation wrist on April 28 and a referral to University Hospital hand surgeon Dr. Jonathon Tueting, I was disappointed that I could not get in to see him until Aug. 25.</span></p> <p>It turns out that was a blessing in disguise, because in the interim I gave up on experimenting with my grip to try to roll the ball stronger and went back to the grip I&rsquo;ve used for almost my entire career.</p> <p>And in the last few weeks, things have returned to &ldquo;normal&rdquo; by my standards, which means I get out of the ball fairly cleanly and consistently for a 52-year-old and my wrist just gets stiff and sore when I bowl &mdash; the debilitating pain is gone.</p> <p>I&rsquo;ve even got back to bowling fairly decent, which means my teammates can quit calling me Old Yeller and joking about taking me back behind the shed and putting me down.</p> <p>That means it was easy to hear Dr. Tueting say that he didn&rsquo;t want to do a fourth surgery on my wrist, which would have been to put the ECU tendon back in place.</p> <p>As I wrote in <a href="../../../news/article/6622" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>, the issue involves something I&rsquo;ve freaked more than a few people out with over the years: the ECU (extensor carpi ulnaris) tendon that runs along the pinky side of your wrist is supposed to stay in the groove of a bone located where the arm meets the hand &mdash; the bone looks like a wishbone in the ultrasound.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">My left wrist does this perfectly. My right wrist ECU does not stay in the groove, instead popping back and forth over the bone edge, which is something I&rsquo;ve shown many people over the years. Squeamish folks don&rsquo;t like to feel it popping!</span></p> <p>At my appointment on Monday, Dr. Tueting had me do this numerous times as he examined me &mdash; that made for a sore wrist as if I&rsquo;d bowled about 10 games &mdash; and then declared that he had seen worse ECU problems.</p> <p>He said the surgery would be a &ldquo;big deal&rdquo; with many months of recovery and no guarantee that it would have a positive impact on my wrist function and bowling. And, of course, there always is the chance for a negative impact.</p> <p>If things were to get back to as bad as they were before the cortisone shot, surgery might be worth the chance and risk.&nbsp;</p> <p>For now, I will be going to an occupational therapist to see if there is a way to tape my wrist or use a widget so the ECU stays in place while bowling. I doubt it, as no wrist device has ever given me any help. But I have nothing to lose by trying.&nbsp;</p> <p>He also said I could get another cortisone shot if it becomes necessary.</p> <p>So almost exactly a year to the day when I started experimenting with the Tri-Grip, I am back to where I was before that.</p> <p>Again for the record, I have nothing against the Tri-Grip and think it can be a very good thing. My creaky, 3-operation wrist just couldn&rsquo;t handle being in a more powerful position at release.</p> <p><a href="../../../news/article/6577" target="_blank"><strong>Here&rsquo;s a blog with some background on my wrist and my experience with the Tri-Grip</strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 18:00:00 -0600 6844 The 11th Frame: PBA moves operational headquarters to Luby Publishing offices in Chicago <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">In a money-saving move, the PBA announced Tuesday that it is moving its operational headquarters from Seattle to Chicago in the home of Luby Publishing, publisher of Bowlers Journal International and other periodicals.</span></p> <p>PBA Commissioner Tom Clark said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release</strong></a> that the move is &ldquo;designed to improve the organization&rsquo;s operational efficiencies, taking advantage of Luby Publishing&rsquo;s expertise in membership services.&rdquo;</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The PBA will sub-lease space in the Luby Publishing offices and use Luby&rsquo;s staff for many of the PBA&rsquo;s day-to-day operational needs.</span></p> <p>PBA IT staff and services will remain in Seattle.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">"The PBA has been a pioneer in the virtual office arena ever since it moved its administrative office from Akron, Ohio, to Seattle in 2000,&rdquo; Clark, who never moved to Seattle and lives in the Milwaukee suburb of Muskego, said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the news release</strong></a>. &ldquo;The organization has successfully functioned with key staff members living in areas across the United States ever since. We anticipate there will be no major change in the way we do business other than having a new mailing address.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><a style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;" href=""><span style="color: #333333; font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">As of Tuesday, the PBA&rsquo;s mailing address will be: PBA, 55 Jackson Ave., Suite 401, Chicago, IL 60604. The PBA office phone number will remain 206-332-9688 and the fax number will remain 206-332-9722.</span></a></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">"We are happy to assist the PBA by sharing our office, as well as in sharing some of the operational duties to the benefit of both companies," Keith Hamilton, president of Luby Publishing, said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the news release</strong></a>. &ldquo;The processing of the PBA memberships is nearly the same as the processing of circulation for LPI's magazines.&rdquo;</span></p> <p>No information was released by PBA on any possible staff cuts with the move, although PBA&rsquo;s long-time office guru Barb Wilt retires effective Sunday&nbsp; after an amazing 44 years of service. A PBA news release on her retirement is <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>Barb is one of those people totally anonymous to the general public but absolutely vital to the smooth operations of an organization like PBA. If anyone deserves a great retirement it is Barb!</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s impossible to thank Barb Wilt enough for her professionalism, reliability and talent over an amazing career with PBA,&rdquo;&nbsp;Clark said in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>the release</strong></a>. &ldquo;Without ever having thrown a ball in competition, Barb has been the heart of the association and no one has meant more to the enduring history of the PBA.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 13:00:00 -0600 6843 The 11th Frame: Fusion Realtors Open Sept. 12-14 headed to full at 140-plus entries already <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">If you don&rsquo;t get your entry in soon, you may be shut out of the Greater Iowa Bowling Association Fusion Realtors Open at Maple Lanes set for Sept. 12-14 in Waterloo.</span></p> <p>A full field is 180 and GIBA operator Joe Engelkes reported Tuesday that he has 141 entries. He said he will post the list of entrants on the <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>GIBA website</strong></a>&nbsp;later this week.</p> <p>The entry fee is $150. To enter, send a check to<br />GIBA<br />C/O Joe Engelkes<br />3018 Saratoga Drive<br />Waterloo, IA&nbsp; 50702</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Details on the great tournament, including the flyer, are in <a href="../../../news/article/6722" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Unfortunately, I will miss a Fusion for the first time as I have elected to bowl the PBA Regional at Cherry Lanes in Dubuque, Iowa that Sunday.</span></p> <p>Details on how the conflict happened are in <a href="../../../news/article/6780" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>.</p> <p>Here is the&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank"><strong>GIBA website</strong></a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Facebook page</strong></a>.</p> <p>Past Fusion winners were&nbsp;<a href="../../../news/article/6464" target="_blank"><strong>Casey Murphy in February</strong></a>,&nbsp;<a href="../../../news/article/6074" target="_blank"><strong>Jason Poli in September 2013</strong></a>,&nbsp;<a href="../../../news/article/5682" target="_blank"><strong>Nick Heilman in February 2013</strong></a>,&nbsp;<a href="../../../news/article/5313" target="_blank"><strong>Derek Sapp in September 2012</strong></a>, and&nbsp;<a href="../../../page/blog_id_4485" target="_blank"><strong>Matt McNiel in September 2011</strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 08:00:00 -0600 6842 The 11th Frame: Osku Palermaa wins 4th PBA Tour title, downing top seed Ryan Ciminelli in WBT Thailand event <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Osku Palermaa concluded the 2014 PBA World Bowling Tour season prior to the WBT Finals during the World Series of Bowling by winning his fourth career PBA Tour title.</span></p> <p>Palermaa defeated top seed Ryan Ciminelli 227-213 and 243-224 to win the title and a little over $32,000 in the tournament in Thailand.</p> <p>Palermaa said a key was switching to a urethane ball &mdash; apparently a PEARL NATURAL.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">"I hadn't used the urethane ball in the past few days but I started to use it today in the earlier Round 4 finals," Ciminelli said in </span><a style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;" href="" target="_blank"><strong>this WBT report</strong></a><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">. "I was very comfortable with the ball and when I saw Ryan was struggling, I knew I had a good chance to win."</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Full final results are <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">With the end of the Thailand tournament, the qualifiers for the WBT Finals at the World Series are set, the WTBA reported.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The men's finalists will be Mike Koivuniemi, Sean Rash and Jason Belmonte, who held off Dom Barrett for the final spot. Rash and Belmonte will renew their rivalry in the first match of the WBT finals, which wil be taped at the World Series for later airing on ESPN.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The women's finalists will be Kelly Kulick, Liz Johnson and Sweden's Sandra Andersson.&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">For both divisions, first is $20,000, second $10,000 and third $5,000.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">&nbsp;</span></p> Mon, 25 Aug 2014 22:00:00 -0600 6841 The 11th Frame: Update: Petersen Classic to return to AMF Hoffman Estates with AMF Bolingbrook to closing <p><em><span style="line-height: 1.4285; font-size: 14px;">Update:&nbsp;The Petersen Classic will&nbsp;return to AMF Hoffman Estates in 2015 with the closing of AMF Bolingbrook,&nbsp;Customer Service Manager A</span>ngela Taylor of AMF/Bowlmor reported in an email to Matt Roberts that&nbsp;Roberts posted on Facebook.</em></p> <p><em>"Good afternoon and thank you for contacting us," Taylor said. "At this time Bowlmor AMF does not have intentions on selling the rights to the Louis P. Petersen Bowling Classic. We will continue to run this important and historical event, as the Classic will be returning to AMF Hoffman Lanes. We appreciate you taking the time to submit your inquiry."</em></p> <p><em><span style="line-height: 1.4285; font-size: 14px;">Thanks for providing that information Matt.</span></em></p> <hr /> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Multiple people are reporting that AMF Bolingbrook will be closing, meaning the venerable Petersen Classic will have to move again if it is to continue.</span></p> <p>I have messages in trying to get official confirmation and comment and will update this blog if and when I get anything.</p> <p><em>Update: The hard working and wonderful Petersen tournament manager Sandy Patterson said in an email that she didn't have any more information, but a source told me the Petersen likely will end up back at AMF Hoffman Estates.</em></p> <p>The reports of AMF Bolingbrook closing prompted numerous threads on Facebook, with several saying they wanted to acquire the Petersen from Bowlmor AMF and hold it at a different center.</p> <p>Matt Robert posted this detailed offer: "I fully support you Mike Flanagan and any investors that would be interested in purchasing the naming rights to the Petersen Classic, I would like to be involved in anyway I can. I have a local bowling center right in heart of Grand Rapids, Michigan, downtown, old school two story 16 Lanes Wengers Bowl. They offer above ground Brunswick Crown Ball Returns, and Masking Units, older Original Anvilane synthetics installed 1988 and are still oiled by hand by the owner Aj Purdum. The only 3 year old Gun Lake Casino is just a quick 15-20 minute trip right down US-131 South and ez-on ez-off highway access. We offer several amazing breweries downtown like Founders Brewing Co. and the Mitten Brewery, and you are just a short drive away from the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan in Holland, Grand Haven, and Muskegon! There is plenty of great golf in our community, for years our Public Course the Highlands CC was a host to the SR PGA Tour and we just hosted the first annual Meijer LPGA Classic at the Blythfield CC! Our community, Michigan's 2nd largest Metropolis has a lot to offer and would be an excellent location to re-locate the Petersen Classic without it losing its theme of being in the Midwest! Excited to see if your group can make something of this!"</p> <p>The key is whether Bowlmor AMF would be willing to sell it &mdash; and at a reasonable cost.</p> <p>The Petersen moved from the famed upstairs lanes at 35<sup>th</sup> and Archer in Chicago to AMF Hoffman Estates in 1994.</p> <p>As I wrote in <a href="../../../news/article/2262" target="_blank"><strong>this story for The Capital Times in 1994</strong></a>, the re-creation at Hoffman Estates was mostly excellent.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">But after last season, Bowlmor AMF moved the Petersen to AMF Bolingbook, as I wrote up <a href="../../../news/article/6361" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">I wrote at the time that &ldquo;the key will be whether AMF can do as good a job recreating the Pete as it did with the center-within-a-center setup at Hoffman Estates.&rdquo;</span></p> <p>We bowled the Petersen on Aug. 8 and I found it to be sorely lacking in key areas such as off-spot pins and variety of conditions, as I wrote in <a href="../../../news/article/6812" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">What made the Petersen so awesome is the extreme lane conditions&nbsp;&mdash; dry and oily&nbsp;&mdash; and the ridiculous racks that led to wacky leaves and many laughs.</span></p> <p>Those in the know and the mechanic at AMF Bolingbrook later posted on Facebook that the center just didn&rsquo;t have time to get it all done this year, but would make sure those features return next year.</p> <p>Now everything is up in the air.</p> <p>I&rsquo;d love to see a private center/group acquire the Petersen, hold it at a center with wood lanes, perhaps during the bowling season as it was at 35<sup>th</sup> and Archer, and do everything possible to lovingly restore it to its former glory.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Mon, 25 Aug 2014 08:00:00 -0600 6840 The 11th Frame: Update: Living legend Walter Ray Williams Jr. wins low-scoring PBA Regional in Des Moines, Iowa <p><em><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Update: Walter Ray Williams Jr., the most prolific winner in PBA history, defeated Marc Heninger in the title match to win the PBA Bowlerama Lanes Midwest Open presented by Radical at Bowlerama Lanes in Des Moines, Iowa.&nbsp;</span></em><em><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Full results are here</strong></a>.</em></p> <hr /> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">One of the impossible questions to answer in bowling is, &ldquo;How does the Viper pattern play?&rdquo;</span></p> <p>Substitute any PBA pattern and the impossibility is the same because there is no such thing as THE Viper pattern, or any other PBA pattern.</p> <p>There are an almost uncountable number of versions of pretty much every PBA pattern, and when you add in different lane surfaces, different, oils, different lane machines, etc. &hellip; I hope you can see that there is no answer to how any specific pattern plays.</p> <p>This weekend at the PBA Bowlerama Lanes Midwest Open presented by Radical at Bowlerama Lanes in Des Moines, Iowa, we bowled on the PBA Regional Viper pattern, now 39 feet rather than the old 37 feet, so I guess it&rsquo;s a version of the Viper used at the World Series of Bowling last fall.</p> <p>I&rsquo;ve bowled in Regionals on Viper that were brutal, high scoring and everywhere in between.</p> <p>This weekend on Bowlerama&rsquo;s high-friction HPL surface in a very warm and humid bowling center &ndash; there was little Bowlerama could do with big crowds and the hot and muggy weather in Des Moines &ndash; this Viper played extremely difficult.</p> <p>There was early hook, not much skid in the middle, hang outside and the lane-to-lane differences were significant.</p> <p>Other than that, it was a piece of cake!</p> <p>The result was that in a big field of 101, the cut to the top 16 for Sunday&rsquo;s match play after the eight games of qualifying was just 1,646 and the last cash spot of 33<sup>rd</sup> was just 1,569.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">This was a great thing considering what a great Regional this is, with hosts Angie Chirpich, Jason Guest, Tom Hess and all of the great sponsors producing a stellar prize fund that will pay $3,800 and $2,300 for first and second, $750 for 16</span><sup>th</sup><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;"> and $575 and $550 for the cash spots.</span></p> <p>And there was the PBA Xtra Frame coverage and a huge pro-am Saturday night with 26 teams of 4 bowlers each bowling 13 games of Baker, each with a different pro.</p> <p>As I joked Saturday after we were done, "If you cashed today, you earned it. If you didn't cash you earned it."</p> <p>This was about shotmaking and sparemaking, with guys playing everywhere from outside like living legend Walter Ray Williams Jr. to sixth arrow like PBA Tour champion Jake Peters.</p> <p>I got one of the checks and nearly made match play with a 1,621 that ran the gamut from great shots to comically bad ones.</p> <p>I started with a Storm OPTIMUS trying to go fairly straight up 10-board for a clean 204 in game one. The second pair we bowled on hooked way more, and I ended up going to a shiny Storm REIGN SUPREME and then a Roto Grip HYSTERIA in close to 15-board and struggled to and then saved a 191.</p> <p>Our third pair was tighter again and I had to move back right, then stayed with the HYSTERIA and moved ever deeper eventually switching to a spinner release to try to get the ball down the lane.</p> <p>Some pairs had a little skid in the middle, and others had almost none. Even great bowlers had train wreck games, such as Hess' 144 in game seven before he recovered with a stellar 236 in the last game to make the cut.</p> <p>I got a lot of good breaks, including five or six Brooklyn strikes, and made all of my spares other than a couple of 2-8s as I rolled 190, 234, 192, 204, 207 and 199.</p> <p>I had a chance the last game to make match play, but a slightly high 4-10 split after a turkey to start and a 2-10 in the ninth on a double killed my chances.</p> <p>My great cross of Hess, fellow PBA Tour champion Anthony LaCaze and Chad Maas helped me in adjusting and added to the fun of a truly challenging day.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Be sure to watch the live Xtra Frame coverage of Sunday&rsquo;s action.</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Sun, 24 Aug 2014 23:00:00 -0600 6834 The 11th Frame: King Pin Lanes in Springfield, Illinois hosting 2 PBA Regionals, Storm Doubles over Labor Day weekend <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Land of Lincoln Tournaments is hosting a cancer fundraiser, two PBA Regionals and a doubles tournament over Labor Day weekend at King Pin Lanes in Springfield, Illinois.</span></p> <p>The two PBA Regionals will be held Saturday, Aug. 30. They are the Midwest/Central PBA BOWLSTRONG Non-Champions Tournament and the Midwest/Central PBA BOWLSTRONG Tournament of Champions.</p> <p>The 3<sup>rd</sup>&nbsp;annual Storm Doubles Classic will be held Sunday, Aug. 31, replacing the Mary Teubner Memorial Team Challenge due to a lack of team entries &mdash; retired PBA Tour champion Jeff Carter of Land of Lincoln Tournaments reported that there were just 14 teams entered at 45 days before the tournament.</p> <p>The weekend starts Friday, Aug. 29 with practice for the Regionals from 3-5 p.m., followed by the 13<sup>th</sup>&nbsp;annual Mary Teubner Memorial Pro-am Fundraiser at 7 p.m. The fun event, which already has 130 entries, will feature 50/50&rsquo;s, ball raffles, BOWLSTRONG merchandise sales and a special BOWLSTRONG video challenge incentive. There will be another MEGA 50/50 drawing this year &mdash; last year&rsquo;s winner took home more than $2,500.</p> <p>The Regionals start with qualifying at 9 a.m. on Saturday and continue with bracket match play in the afternoon.</p> <p>The Non-Champions Regional will have an experimental relaxed dress code: jeans may be worn and you do not need a name shirt, but must still be presentable. All other equipment product registration rules apply.</p> <p>All PBA rules apply to the Tournament of Champions Regional.</p> <p>The Non-Champions Regional will be contested on the PBA Dick Weber pattern and the Tournament of Champions Regional will be contested on the 39-foot 2011-12 Tournament of Champions pattern.</p> <p>There will be brackets and pots for both regionals, with all of the proceeds going to the BOWLSTRONG Cancer Research Charity.</p> <p>The Storm Doubles on Sunday will be contested on a 41-foot pattern Kegel created for the tournament called &ldquo;For the Fight&rdquo; featuring 26.95 ml of oil and a 2.5:1 ratio.</p> <p>&ldquo;Nobody has practiced on it and the first time bowlers will see it will be on that Sunday, so there will be no unfair advantage to anyone,&rdquo; Carter said.</p> <p>The field is limited to 54 entries and 38 are taken already, Carter reported.</p> <p>Shea Bittenbender and Chris Taylor are the 2-time defending champions of the event.</p> <p>There will be 50/50s, ball raffles, merchandise sales and brackets and side pots for the event.</p> <p>The winner of the MEGA 50/50 raffle will be drawn at the conclusion of the Storm Doubles.</p> <p>Details on the events are in PDFs attached at the bottom of this blog.</p> <p>&ldquo;Last year we raised over $14,000 for BOWLSTRONG and we&rsquo;d be happy to match that this year,&rdquo; he said. &rdquo;We&rsquo;re hopeful for a great weekend with lots of opportunities to raise money for Cancer Research. I hope that the brackets and side pots go over well during the regionals, as well as the Doubles Classic. And we&rsquo;ll be unveiling some new BOWLSTRONG T-shirts as well!&rdquo;</p> <p>Carter said he was disappointed that he had to shelve the Team Challenge concept, especially since he adjusted the eligibility rules after PBA star Tommy Jones&rsquo; team ran away with it last year.</p> <p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m not a fan of limitations or restrictions on who can bowl, but as a host and Tournament Director I also have to take into consideration what&rsquo;s best for the event and ultimately in our case, what&rsquo;s best for BOWLSTRONG,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;I don&rsquo;t think many people knew that we eliminated the Top 50 in Tour Points from the event.&rdquo;</p> <p>Carter added the Regionals after the Team Challenge conflicted with a PBA Regional doubleheader in Council Bluffs, Iowa last year, forcing Midwest PBA members into a difficult situation.</p> <p>&ldquo;We split up the added money that was going to go towards the Team Challenge and put it into the three events instead,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;We&rsquo;d like to bring the Team Challenge back, but possibly on a smaller (more local) scale. Our focus moving forward will be the Storm Doubles Classic.&rdquo;</p> <p>I am entered in the Champions Regional and will bowl in the pro-am to support the charitable efforts put forth by Jeff, Mindy Manci and her family, and everyone else at King Pin.</p> <p>But I won&rsquo;t be bowling the doubles, as that&rsquo;s a little much for my creaky wrist and aging body to take, although I might have made the effort if it was an Over 50/Under 50 format.</p> <p>Going forward, I will be bowling only a select few special PBA Regionals as I focus my remaining years of competition on PBA50 and non-PBA senior tournaments.</p> <p>I haven&rsquo;t won a PBA Regional in several years, though I did finish second a couple of years ago, and no longer have any serious prospects of winning a significant tournament against the &ldquo;kids.&rdquo;</p> <p>Carter said 2015 &ldquo;could prove to be very big for us and BOWLSTRONG&rdquo; with tentative plans for a &ldquo;Super Week&rdquo; starting with possibly hosting a PBA50 Tour Stop (along with golf outings, pro-ams, putt-putt tournament) and finishing with the Storm Doubles on Labor Day weekend.</p> <p>&ldquo;The key will be putting the added money together and working out the details, but that&rsquo;s the direction we&rsquo;d like to head,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;Right now the PBA50 Tour seems to be the logical investment as a host, so we&rsquo;re doing our due diligence and looking into that for 2015.&rdquo;</p> <p>That would certainly make my choices for using my limited vacation time even more difficult, considering how much I love the PBA50 Tour stops in Hammond, Indiana and Welch, Minnesota and that the USBC Senior Masters will be in Green Bay in 2015.&nbsp;</p> <p>The Land of Lincoln Tournament Facebook page is <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>And the BOWLSTRONG Cancer Research Facebook page is <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Thu, 21 Aug 2014 07:00:00 -0600 6839 The 11th Frame: Popular Over 40/Under 40 Doubles set for Nov. 29 in Appleton <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Terry Kulibert&rsquo;s WBST Over 40/Under 40 Doubles, annually one of the state&rsquo;s most popular scratch tournaments, is set for Saturday, Nov. 29 at noon at Super Bowl, 2222 E Northland Ave. in Appleton.</span></p> <p>The tournament requires one bowler of a duo to be at least 40 years old, and teams are limited to one PBA player.</p> <p>The entry fee is $160 per team, with $130 to the prize fund and $30 to lineage and expenses, and first is $1,500 based on 48 teams. Last year, there were 74 teams, first paid $2,000 and second $1,200.</p> <p>There also is plenty of side action.</p> <p>The lane pattern is not a house shot &mdash; last year it was Kegel Middle Road.</p> <p>The format is four games of qualifying followed by one-game matches, with one-third of the field making the cut and cashing.</p> <p>The <a href="../../../news/article/6262" target="_blank"><strong>defending champions are Mike Peters and Scott Rains</strong></a>, who made the trip from Iowa.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">For details and to enter, contact Kulibert at <a href=""></a>, or 920-379-0108, or through <a href=";ref_notif_type=plan_user_invited" target="_blank"><strong>the tournament&rsquo;s Facebook page</strong></a>.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The tournament flyer is attached to the end of this blog.</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Thu, 21 Aug 2014 05:00:00 -0600 6838 The 11th Frame: Senior Scratch Bowlers Association of Iowa announces 2014-15 schedule <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The Senior Scratch Bowlers Association of Iowa has announced its 2014-15 schedule, highlighted by the annual 50/50 4-man and doubles tournaments it puts on with the Greater Iowa Bowling Association.</span></p> <p>The SSBA offers fun events on house shots &mdash; bring your striking shoes! &mdash; with affordable entry fees and relatively flat prize funds.</p> <p>In other words, the events are not about making money, they&rsquo;re about the fun of competing with a great group of guys.</p> <p>The one change in the SSBA this year is the addition of an option additional Tier 2 entry fee of $30, with 100 percent returned to the bowlers. The idea started by the GIBA offers those who want to bowl for extra money the option to do so.</p> <p>The season opener is Sunday, Sept. 7 at May City Bowl&nbsp;&nbsp;in Cedar Rapids.</p> <p>The 111 Doubles &mdash; the age of partners must total at least 111 &mdash; will be Sunday, Oct. 12 at Maple Lanes&nbsp;in Waterloo.</p> <p>Bowlerama&nbsp;&nbsp;in Des Moines is the host on Sunday, Nov. 9.</p> <p>The 50/50 4-man is Saturday, Dec. 6 and the 50/50 doubles follows the next day, both at Cadillac Lanes in Waterloo. The doubles annually is sold out at 75 paid teams by Thanksgiving and last year the 4-man drew more than two dozen teams.</p> <p>Host centers on Sundays, Jan. 18, Feb. 15 and March 15 are Cherry Lanes in Dubuque, Highland Park Bowl in Moline (Illinois) and Totem Bowl in Marshalltown, respectively.</p> <p>The season closes at Miller Time in Davenport, Iowa, although I think the listed date of April 5 may change since that is Easter.</p> <p>Depending how the PBA50 Regional schedule pans out, I will compete in a few of the SSBA tournaments as I have the past couple of seasons.</p> <p>For more information, contact Gary Brinker at <a href=""></a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>A website for the SSBA is under development.</p> Thu, 21 Aug 2014 04:00:00 -0600 6836 The 11th Frame: Classic Lanes Fox Valley hosting adult, youth scratch tournaments Sept. 27-28 on mix of wood, synthetic lanes <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">I&rsquo;ve bowled in a few tournaments in my career at centers that had a mix of wood and synthetic lanes, including PBA Regionals at the old Fox Bowl in suburban Chicago.</span></p> <p>Such a situation presented an extra challenge that was fun to deal with.</p> <p>Classic Lanes Fox Valley will offer that challenge in a pair of scratch tournaments for adult and youth bowlers on Sept. 27-28.</p> <p>The center, which will host the minor events of the 2015 State Tournament, changed ownership this summer and is being totally remodeled. As of the weekend of the tournaments, half of the 36 lanes will have been converted to synthetic and half still will be the old wood.</p> <p>The 2014 Straight Shot Open will be Saturday, Sept. 27 at 11 a.m. and the Youth Challenge Series 2014 Straight Shot Classic will be Sunday, Sept. 28 at 11 a.m.&nbsp; Youth bowlers can enter the Straight Shop Open and take a VISA gift card if less than $500 in prize money won or have money awarded as scholarship.</p> <p>Both tournaments will feature 3-game sets of qualifying on wood lanes and synthetic lanes.</p> <p>The adults will have the top eight seeded into a bracket with 2-game total pins matches featuring one game on each surface, then 1-game matches taped for Time Warner Cable SportsChannel &amp; Charter on Demand for the semifinals and finals featuring one lane of each surface for the TV pair.</p> <p>The youth bowlers will compete in boys and girls divisions, 18-21 and 17 and under, with the top two in each division moving to the semifinals. Those matches will be 2 games total pins with one game on each surface, with the winners advancing to title matches taped for Time Warner Cable SportsChannel &amp; Charter on Demand that will be 1-game matches featuring one lane of each surface.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">For those 1-game matches, lanes 18 and 19 will be used with scores punched in manually on scorers.</span></p> <p>&ldquo;Even though we will be looking to make this weekend an annual event, for this inaugural weekend, it's a once in a lifetime challenge,&rdquo; Phil Brylow of ECB Productions said of the dual surfaces.</p> <p>Both tournaments will have added money thanks to sponsorship by Straight Shot Pool, Dart and Game Supply in Menasha, and the bracket proceeds from Saturday's event will be split between the prize funds on Saturday and Sunday.</p> <p>Brackets will be separate for wood and synthetic surfaces.</p> <p>The lane patterns will be from the Kegel Challenge series.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The entry fee in the Straight Shot Open is $75, with $47 going to the prize fund, $18 for lineage and $10 for tournament/TV expense. There&rsquo;s a $10 late fee after Sept. 24.</span></p> <p>One in five will cash and based on 60 entries, first will pay $900, second $600, third and fourth $325, fifth-eighth $175 and 9<sup>th</sup>-12<sup>th</sup> $125.</p> <p>The entry fee in the TCS Straight Shot Classic is $50, with $26 to the prize fund and $24 to lineage, expenses and TV production. There&rsquo;s a $10 late fee after Sept. 24.</p> <p>The lineage and expense portions of the prize fund and 1-in-5 cashing ratio in the Straight Shot Open may turn off some bowlers, but for those who do enter, competing on the two surfaces should be fun.&nbsp;</p> <p>The tournaments are not USBC certified, but USBC rules will be used with one exception: bowling ball surface altering is allowed between games.</p> <p>PDFs of the entry flyers are attached at the bottom of this blog.</p> <p>Those with question can call Brylow at 414-659-0444, or Classic Fox Valley manager Terry Kulibert at 920-722-1998.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Wed, 20 Aug 2014 09:00:00 -0600 6835 The 11th Frame: Commissioner Tom Clark expects PBA deal with Bowlmor AMF <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Those who consider Bowlmor AMF to be an enemy of serious bowling are going to be shocked at what I am about to write and what is soon to happen, according to PBA Commissioner Tom Clark.</span></p> <p>&ldquo;It does look like they are going to do some sponsorship or advertising with the PBA, which I hope let&rsquo;s people know they do care about 'real' bowling,&rdquo; Clark said of Bowlmor AMF in a recent interview.&nbsp; &ldquo;It hasn&rsquo;t happened yet, but we&rsquo;re really deep in talks and at this point it would be shocking to me if we didn&rsquo;t work something out together, hopefully sooner rather than later.&rdquo;</p> <p>The deal is likely to be a combination of having events and having Bowlmor AMF as a sponsor of PBA, Clark said, adding that the sides continue to have open dialogue about ways to partner, including meetings in New York City.</p> <p>AMF hasn&rsquo;t put any money toward the PBA for years, he said.</p> <p>Clark said he has been talking with Bowlmor since they bought AMF, which at one point had a former Disney executive at its chief marketing officer.</p> <p>&ldquo;I even had the owners of the PBA meet with him and we were talking about a sweeping title sponsorship of the PBA and redefining the way TV would show bowling,&rdquo; Clark said.</p> <p>Bowlmor AMF turned down that proposal but wanted to talk about a sponsorship that was a little smaller, Clark said, before the former Disney executive left the company, setting things back.</p> <p>Eventually, Clark revisited talking with the company after they spent a large sum on a great commercial that aired nationally.</p> <p>The goal was to get the ad on PBA Tour TV shows &ldquo;and then the next week they bought Brunswick,&rdquo; Clark said.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>In that deal in July, Brunswick announced that it had agreed to sell its Retail Bowling business (85 bowling centers) to Bowlmor AMF for $270 million, and intended to sell its Bowling Products business (balls, machines, lanes, etc.) by the end of 2014.</p> <p>My initial story on the sale is <a href="../../../news/article/6758" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a> and my story featuring financial analyst (and PBA regional champion) Rob Plaza&rsquo;s views of the deal is <a href="../../../news/article/6779" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Clark doesn&rsquo;t expect Bowlmor AMF to do much to change how the Brunswick centers operate with leagues and tournaments.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>&ldquo;I think that (Bowlmor AMF CEO ) Tom Shannon likes the way the Brunswick centers were run,&rdquo; Clark said. &ldquo;He didn&rsquo;t like the way AMF centers were run, but that&rsquo;s pretty obvious &mdash; they went bankrupt. AMF was a mess they had to fix up. Most Brunswick centers are not doing that poorly and they have better management and staff and stuff like that, so there&rsquo;s less to change about them. And a lot of them are fortified by leagues and regular bowlers so you have to keep them. &ldquo;</p> <p>In regard to the image Shannon has with some bowlers as being anti-serious bowling, Clark said he &ldquo;seems fine to me,&rdquo; and he believes the Brunswick deal &ldquo;ultimately will end up being OK for everybody.&rdquo;</p> <p>Shannon, Clark added, &ldquo;is putting his money where his mouth is, and is positive about the business of bowling above and beyond anyone right now.&nbsp;It&rsquo;s like the PBA owners: they invested, they believed in it. You have these people that invest in (bowling) and they end up with more criticism than people sitting back wanting things for free.&rdquo;</p> <p>I have gone back and forth with Bowlmor AMF public relations since before interviewing Clark, but haven&rsquo;t been able to set up an interview with a representative of Bowlmor AMF.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">In pitching PBA to Shannon and his team, Clark said he tries to &ldquo;make it clear to them to not think of this stodgy organization that will not bend to modern presentation. We don&rsquo;t want a preconceived notion of what PBA is to turn someone off.&ldquo;</span></p> <p>Clark said that despite Brunswick's Bowling Products business being for sale and therefore in limbo and the centers being taken over by Bowlmor AMF, the PBA expects to continue with the partnerships it has for events at Brunswick centers, product registration of Brunswick bowling balls and other products, and with Brunswick as the official lane maintenance provider.</p> <p>In essence, the sponsorship and advertising with Bowlmor AMF would be added to PBA&rsquo;s existing partnerships with Brunswick.</p> <p>Clark also covered several other issues in the wide-ranging interview, including that the upcoming World Series of Bowling will have just 1-hour shows for the four animal pattern tournaments, with the other three remaining 2 hours. Bowlers Journal broke that news in its August issue.</p> <p>The hour shows still will feature four bowlers, with seeds 2, 3 and 4 competing in the first match and the winner in the title match.</p> <p>&ldquo;That&rsquo;s something I want to do,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s not ESPN saying you have to do 1-hour shows.&rdquo;</p> <p>One reason is that he believes the &ldquo;general audience might have an appetite for a quicker show and quicker conclusion to what&rsquo;s going on. It&rsquo;s always better to leave people wanting more than saying, &lsquo;That was too long.&rsquo; &ldquo;</p> <p>The move also is aimed at what it&rsquo;s about when it comes to anything on TV: ratings.</p> <p>The four animal pattern events start Dec. 14 and will be going against the NFL immediately following the NFL pre-game show on ESPN.</p> <p>&ldquo;We end up with a lot of holdover people, so ratings usually are strong at the top of the show and then people begin to find their way to an NFL game,&rdquo; Clark said. &ldquo;A shorter show invites more people to stay with us to the conclusion, so we compete less against the NFL when we&rsquo;re only an hour. I think it will be a chance to increase our ratings.&rdquo;</p> <p>The shorter shows also will cut down the amount of taping over that first weekend of November at South Point, so it should make it easier on production staff and fans, Clark said.</p> <p>The risks are giving up an hour of time bowling is on TV and the inventory for commercials, promotional opportunities, etc.</p> <p>For this viewer, last year&rsquo;s 2-hour shows from the World Series that featured the trick shot segments with Terrell Owens did drag on, and those segments ruined some of the continuity as they came between the semifinal and title match. I did enjoy them, but I found myself going forward on my DVR to the title match after the semi and then returning to the trick shots to watch them. (I rarely get to see the shows when they air as I&rsquo;m usually bowling.)</p> <p>PBA announced later in August in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release</strong></a> that long-time sponsors GEICO had signed as the title sponsor for the World Series.</p> <p>And also in late August, PBA released the full ESPN schedule in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this news release</strong></a>.</p> <p>Clark also gave some general information on the 2015 PBA League, which is returning in part due to the support of sponsors GEICO and Barbasol.</p> <p>The League will be taped in early 2015 at Bayside Bowl in Portland, Maine, which Clark described as a cool building that &ldquo;feels like an arena,&rdquo; and result in the four shows that will conclude the season on ESPN March 29 and April 5, 12 and 19.&nbsp;</p> <p>It will be eight teams with the same managers but a total re-draft for rosters with a random draw for draft order. &nbsp;The eligibility for draft spots will be based on PBA points, with, for example, the top 10 points (outside the franchise players) eligible for the first round. The two players not picked then go into the grouping for the second round.</p> <p>&ldquo;It makes sure people won&rsquo;t go off the board for any goofy picks or anything like that,&rdquo; Clark said.</p> <p>The managers are Mark Baker, Jason Couch, Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, Del Ballard, Tim Mack, Andrew Cain, Norm Duke and Johnny Petraglia.</p> <p>The franchises, logos and celebrities will be the same, although Pittsburgh could switch to Oakland since celebrity owner Lamar Woodley now plays with the Raiders instead of the Steelers.&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;We want to keep those brands and logos going,&rdquo; Clark said.</p> <p>The shows will be two quarterfinal matches on each of two shows, then two semis on one show and the title match on one show.</p> <p>The format for the first three shows will be 2-game Baker matches, while the title match will be singles, doubles, trios and team like in the 2014 PBA League, Clark said.</p> <p>More details on the 2015 PBA League will be released later, Clark said, adding that &ldquo;there&rsquo;s a lot to still be decided.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p> <p>Those details were announced in late August and are in <a href="../../../news/article/6848" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>.</p> <p>A big highlight of the 2015 season will be the 50<sup>th</sup> anniversary of the Tournament of Champions, with the week in Indianapolis kicking off with a Hall of Fame induction. The Hall of Fame vote is still to come.</p> <p>The prestigious major tournament will be held at Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis Feb. 11-15, with all PBA champions eligible.</p> <p>More details on the TOC are in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this recent PBA news release</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Clark also said the plan is for blue oil to be used &ldquo;any time we are on TV except the Masters,&rdquo; where the decision would be USBC&rsquo;s.&rdquo;</span></p> <p>&ldquo;I haven&rsquo;t met anybody who doesn&rsquo;t like it from outside of the traditionalist world,&rdquo; Clark said of the visible oil. &ldquo;Obviously, there is some dissension in bowling about it. But outside of bowling everybody likes it &mdash; ESPN and sponsors. Most of the complaints are kind of lame, like that it makes it easier, which it doesn't.&rdquo;</p> <p>Clark said he&rsquo;d love to have a full tournament using the oil, but nothing has been scheduled.</p> <p>Clark also confirmed that ESPN has expressed interest in televising PBA50 Tour competition.</p> <p>&ldquo;The name that gets everybody excited still in bowling is Pete Weber,&rdquo; Clark said. &ldquo;And I think an executive noticed that Pete Weber was bowling in championships in the PBA50. It was the first time I had ever had a long conversation about the PBA50 Tour with ESPN.</p> <p>&ldquo;We have been sneaking them on (ESPN) in different ways. In the past, they always didn&rsquo;t want senior bowling. But the most recent conversation was how can we get them on more? It&rsquo;s a good opening and we&rsquo;ll see what we can do.&rdquo;</p> <p>It&rsquo;s likely nothing would happen until the 2016 season, and a logical format might be a resurrection of the PBA-PBA50 doubles, he said.</p> <p>&ldquo;That would be a good show,&rdquo; Clark said. &ldquo;But you never know dealing with TV executives. Their opinions and budgets and needs for programming change all the time.&rdquo;</p> <p>Speaking of the PBA50 Tour, the chatter toward the end of this season was that the dominance by Hall of Famers this year was hurting entries.</p> <p>Clark said he felt it might be more about the length of the season and people not having enough time off, and also said that one way to counter the situation if it is a factor is to find ways to monetize the interest guys like Weber draw so prize funds can go up for the PBA50 bowlers.</p> <p>&ldquo;The Super Senior event (in Fort Wayne, Indiana) had 130 entries but I don&rsquo;t think if we had 12 Super Senior events there would be 130 at the last one,&rdquo; he said.</p> <p>Clark said he feels that PBA has stabilized and is in position take advantage of growth opportunities.</p> <p>&ldquo;I feel better about our direction now than I have because we were able to stem that tide of a poor budget prediction in previous years and we&rsquo;re budgeting realistically,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;We&rsquo;re self-sufficient and it enables us to make better business decisions. And it also means if something good happens then all of a sudden we can grow.&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;For some reason people got used to the idea that you don&rsquo;t have to make money to pay. And that was true for a while because our owners were kind of like investors in the PBA for several years. They allowed us to overspend and covered that based on thinking they&rsquo;d get a rights fee at some point. They really were hoping that ESPN would step up with like a $75 million rights fee at some point because of the success they would have. That&rsquo;s not a bad way to think, but with that not happening it put us in a position where there was no more direct investment and we&rsquo;d have to make it work on our own.&rdquo;</p> <p>There still are almost as many professional bowlers as in those subsidized years, but they live differently: traveling globally, doing more coaching, depending more on sponsors.</p> <p>Clark said the things happening &ldquo;give me hope,&rdquo; and that should be the theme among bowlers, rather than the negativity that is common.</p> <p>&ldquo;For a while, I almost didn&rsquo;t blame them,&rdquo; he said of those who are negative. &ldquo;But I think we&rsquo;ve got some opportunities and I wouldn&rsquo;t want to see those opportunities hurt by negativity.&rdquo;</p> <p>Clark said one of those opportunities is a new "PBA Network" about to be launched that will feature Xtra Frame, the PBA Youtube channel and the PBA Bowling Challenge game, among other things.</p> <p>&ldquo;These our &nbsp;opportunities for growth in new revenue streams that could break wide open any day as we add content and better monetize our fan base like all professional sports do,&rdquo; he said.</p> <p>The dream of many is a true PBA Tour that tours the country with full tournaments week after week like in the golden years.</p> <p>The key to that &mdash; and many other big things &mdash; happening is rights fees from a TV network.</p> <p>Back when the PBA had a true Tour, it was because &ldquo;ABC paid the PBA to be on the air and paid for production of the shows,&rdquo; Clark said. &ldquo;We actually don&rsquo;t have bad deals with ESPN and CBS (Sports Network) now. They help with production. A lot of smaller sports jealous of our relationship with ESPN &mdash; swimming would like to be on ESPN for 16 straight Sundays &mdash; but our deal doesn&rsquo;t cover all of our production and doesn&rsquo;t offer us a payment we can use against our bottom line.&rdquo;</p> <p>And that pales in comparison to, for example, the <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>$1.1 billion deal FOX agreed to for the acquisition of rights to golf&rsquo;s U.S. Open for a dozen years</strong></a>&nbsp;and the&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank"><strong>$90 million per year in deals Major League Soccer recently signed</strong></a>.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s the way you can grow in today&rsquo;s sports world,&rdquo; Clark said. &ldquo;Sponsorships are like gravy. The baseline is rights fees .&rdquo;</p> <p>A big rights fee deal would make it &ldquo;so you almost can&rsquo;t fail,&rdquo; Clark said.</p> <p>&ldquo;Two years ago we shopped the ESPN deal and talked to almost every network and that&rsquo;s how the CBS deal was born,&rdquo; Clark added. &ldquo;But it was not a more compelling offer than what ESPN offered us.&rdquo;</p> <p>And the ESPN deal is &ldquo;really still the biggest single reason for the viability of the PBA,&rdquo; Clark said.</p> <p>&ldquo;Securing rights fees is about growing bowling&rsquo;s fan base,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;If we can prove an overwhelming interest by a great passionate group, now the network wants to invest in it. It&rsquo;s, &lsquo;Here&rsquo;s your $10 million make this work.&rsquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;One of the virtues of staying alive is any day I could get a phone call from a network saying we want a 5-week series this summer. The more good stuff you have the more chances you can get the interest of a network that wants programming.&rdquo;</p> Wed, 20 Aug 2014 08:00:00 -0600 6833 The 11th Frame: 16th annual Joe Tomsu Memorial Over/Under Scratch Doubles set for Nov. 9 in Council Bluffs, Iowa <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The&nbsp;16th annual Joe Tomsu Memorial Over/Under Scratch Doubles is set for Sunday, Nov. 9 at 9 a.m. at Thunderbowl in Council Bluffs, Iowa.</span></p> <p>The age for determining over and under in the event is 45, except women get to compete in the older division if they are at least 35.</p> <p>The entry fee is $125, with $112.50 to the prize fund, $10.50 for lineage and $2 for expenses.</p> <p>The field is limited to 128 entries. Based on 96, first will pay $2,500, second $1,250 down to $400 for 13<sup>th</sup> through 16<sup>th</sup> with 1 in 3 cashing.</p> <p>The format is 6 games of qualifying, &nbsp;with 16 in each division advancing and paired by their qualifying score.</p> <p>The top four receive two byes and places 5-8 receive one bye.</p> <p>The finals consist of best-of-3-games elimination matches.</p> <p>The tournament also features an interesting super bracket.</p> <p>Details are in the flyer attached to the bottom of this blog.</p> <p>Or for details, call Matt Tomsu at 402-305-5989 or Scott Sullinger at 402-301-8832 or The Bowling Store at 402-991-2660.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 12:00:00 -0600 6832 The 11th Frame: PBA Senior Tour great Gene Stus dies <p>PBA Senior Tour great and PBA and USBC Hall of Famer Gene Stus died Monday. He was 74.</p> <p>Stus had not bowled for about a decade due to heart problems and had been in declining health, close friend and Turbo owner Dave Bernhardt said in a phone call.</p> <p>Stus didn&rsquo;t compete on the PBA Tour, but became a great on the PBA Senior Tour after he was able to retire from General Motors at 50, winning 11 Senior Tour titles, three behind&nbsp;all-time leader and&nbsp;fellow Hall of Famer John Handegard .</p> <p>The Detroit area legend's most memorable moment came in&nbsp;July&nbsp;1992 when he became the first Senior Tour player to bowl a 300 game on national television, defeating Don Gilman, 300-188, in the Pacific Cal Bowl Senior Open in Lakewood, California. That perfect game on ESPN earned Stus a $100,000 bonus.</p> <p>That helped earn him Senior Player of the Year honors in 1992.</p> <p>He was inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame in 2012. <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Here is the video tribute for his Hall induction</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">&ldquo;It was an honor to bowl with the sport&rsquo;s greats who I admired my whole life and I always wondered how I would measure up,&rdquo; Stus said in his Hall of Fame acceptance speech, according to <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this PBA news release</strong></a>. &ldquo;When I was able to retire at 50, I started to get back to bowling seriously and found I still had the touch. </span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">&ldquo;Bowling on the Senior Tour was a lot more than achieving the dream of bowling with the greats of the game,&rdquo; he added. &ldquo;Just to be around them and to remember all the fun we had on and off the lanes for those years was an experience I&rsquo;ll never forget.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Stus, who won three titles in his USBC Open Championships career, was inducted into the USBC Hall of Fame in 2009. </span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Stus won Open Championships Eagles in the 1987 team all-events, 1990 team and 1992 doubles.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">In 25 Open Championships appearances, Stus averaged 201.4.</span></p> <p>Stus also was a member of the Taylor Sports, Greater Detroit Bowling Association and Michigan State Bowling Association Halls of Fame.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">I did not know&nbsp;Stus, but his popularity was evident during Dave Soutar's retirement party at the PBA Senior Tour stop (my second) in Decatur, Illinois in 2012. A call was placed to Stus, who was unable to attend, and piped through the sound system at the party so everyone could hear the conversation with Stus.</span></p> <p>Stus is survived by his wife Sally, son Troy, stepson Gary Tis, grandchildren Cayla, Chris, D.J., Cody and Nolan, and two great grandchildren.</p> <p>PBA reported that visitation will be held Wednesday, Aug. 20 from 5-9&nbsp;p.m. and Thursday, Aug. 21 from noon-9 p.m.&nbsp;at the John Molnar Funeral Home Chapel, 23700 West Road, Brownstown, Michigan. Services have been scheduled for Friday, Aug. 22 at 9:30 a.m. (Instate) and 10 a.m. (Mass) at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church, 9000 Laurence, Allen Park, Michigan.</p> <p>He will be laid to rest at Our Lady of Hope Cemetery, 18303 Allen Road in Brownstown.</p> <p>Additional information may be obtained from the Molnar Funeral Home via <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>its website</strong></a>&nbsp;or by calling 734-692-1515.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Mon, 18 Aug 2014 16:30:00 -0600 6828 The 11th Frame: Sean Yonan Memorial weekend of tournaments set for March 20-22 in Sheboygan <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">The Sean Yonan Memorial weekend of youth and adult &nbsp;tournaments will be March 20-22 Lakeshore and Maple Sheboygan, Trevor Yonan announced.</span></p> <p>The Baker event is Friday, the youth events are Saturday and Sunday, and the second annual Sean Yonan Memorial Scratch Open is Sunday.</p> <p>Yonan said the formats will be the same as 2014 so for detail, read my blog in advance of 2014 <a href="../../../news/article/6253" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>The events honor Sean Yonan, who died from complications of a severe asthma attack on Feb. 14, 1995. More than $100,000 in scholarships have been given away in the past nine years.</p> <p>For more information, contact tournament director Keith Yonan at&nbsp;<a href=""><strong></strong></a>&nbsp;or 920-980-4752, or Trevor Yonan at&nbsp;<a href=""><strong></strong></a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Mon, 18 Aug 2014 08:05:00 -0600 6827 The 11th Frame: New Rose Bowl tourney similar to Fusion Realtors Open set for Oct. 25-26 at Leisure Lanes in Davenport, Iowa <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">If you like the Fusion Realtors Open, Leisure Lanes in Davenport, Iowa has created a new tournament a lot like the Fusions.</span></p> <p>The inaugural Rose Bowl will be Oct. 25-26 at the center at 2802 W. 73<sup>rd</sup> St. in Davenport.</p> <p>The entry fee is $120, with $100 to the prize fund and $20 for lineage. With $2,000 in added money already secured, first prize is guaranteed $1,500 and 1 in 3 will cash.</p> <p>The format is seven games of qualifying with squads at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday. The squads are limited to 48 bowlers and with 96 entries, 32 will cash and the top 24 advance to Sunday&rsquo;s 6-game semifinals with pins carrying over.</p> <p>The top five after those 13 games advance to a stepladder finals.</p> <p>The lane pattern will be Sport compliant.</p> <p><a href="../../../news/article/6789" target="_blank"><strong>The 12th annual Tri City Bank Milwaukee Open is Sunday, Oct. 26</strong></a>.</p> <p>For more information and to reserve a spot, call Joe Roseman at 563-726-2708.</p> <p>Roseman also reported that his mother's homemade chili will be available FREE&nbsp;in the bar for all of the bowlers, with the reward of an alcoholic beverage of the person's choice if they can eat just one bowl!</p> <p>I'm not sure how I will bowl that weekend, but I am ready to take anyone up on a chili challenge.</p> <p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> Mon, 18 Aug 2014 08:00:00 -0600 6829 The 11th Frame: Cadillac Lanes starting scratch trio tournament in memory of Adrian Erickson on Sept. 20 <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;"><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Cadillac Lanes in Waterloo, Iowa is starting a scratch trio tournament in memory of long-time owner Adrian Erickson, who died earlier this year.</span></span></p> <p>The A.E. Classic Trio Tournament&nbsp;at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 20 will benefit the Adrian Erickson Memorial Scholarship Fund.</p> <p>Entry fee is $45 per bowler, with $30 to the prize fund, $10 to lineage and $5 to the scholarship fund.</p> <p>The format is four games across eight lanes, cut to the top 12 and bowl another game, cut to the top six and bowl another game, then cut to the top four for a stepladder finals.</p> <p>The top seed gets a $75 prize.</p> <p>Other prize details are not given on the flyer.</p> <p>The lane pattern will be a modified house shot.</p> <p>To enter, contact April Tippett at 319-721-9836 or <a href=""></a> or Angi Fangman at 319-231-0167 or <a href=""></a>.</p> <p>Cadillac is at 650 LaPorte Road in Waterloo.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Mon, 18 Aug 2014 07:55:00 -0600 6837 The 11th Frame: Craig Nidiffer takes advantage of good breaks, beats top seed Brett Wolfe for $10,000 top prize at New Mexico Open <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Craig Nidiffer took advantage of some good breaks in beating top seed Brett Wolfe for the $10,000 top prize at the 11</span><sup>th</sup><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;"> annual New Mexico Open on Sunday.</span></p> <p>Nidiffer, a rising star from the Detroit area, beat Wolfe, a former USBC Masters champion, in the righty-lefty battle 276-237, Steve Mackie, tournament operator and host proprietor at Tenpins &amp; More in Rio Rancho, N.M., reported.</p> <p>Nidiffer led qualifying but Wolfe passed him during Sunday&rsquo;s semifinals and round-robin match play, leaving Nidiffer the second seed for the stepladder finals.</p> <p>In the stepladder, after PBA star Mike Fagan beat Geoffrey Young 227-218 and Tyler Jensen downed Fagan 246-224, Nidiffer edged Jensen 204-195 to advance to the title match.</p> <p>Wolfe hit the pocket every shot, but three solid 8-pins and a ringing 7-pin stymied him, while Nidiffer used a Brooklyn and a face shot strike in an opening 4-bagger to propel him.</p> <p>"I got lucky," Nidiffer told Gary Herron of the Rio Rancho Observer in <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>this story in the Albuquerque Journal</strong></a>. "I got really lucky."</p> <p><a href=""><span style="color: #333333; font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Wolfe earned $5,500 for second in the tournament, which broke records for entries at 217, states represented at 18, prize money at $54,465 and total prize money counting side action at more than $73,000 Mackie reported.</span></a></p> <p>Third was $2,750, fourth $2,000 and fifth $1,750.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">&ldquo;There were a lot of tournaments going on this weekend, but I felt this was the best one,&rdquo; Nidiffer said in the </span><a style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;" href="" target="_blank"><strong>Rio Rancho Observer story</strong></a><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">. &ldquo;Coming out here, it&rsquo;s good to get away from Michigan. Detroit&rsquo;s now 15 feet under water and the rats are swimming and you&rsquo;ve got kayaks going down the freeway. So figured, (I&rsquo;d) come out to New Mexico &mdash; the weather&rsquo;s beautiful out here, you&rsquo;ve got a great tournament. I&rsquo;ve enjoyed my time out here and very happy I decided to come out here.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Mackie said the 12</span><sup>th</sup><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;"> annual New Mexico Open will be the same weekend, Aug. 14-16, 2015.</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Sun, 17 Aug 2014 23:00:00 -0600 6831 The 11th Frame: Matt Gasn cruises in stepladder, defeats top seed Jonathan Schalow to win Open title <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">DUBUQUE, Iowa &mdash; Matt Gasn grabbed the lead early in Sunday&rsquo;s 12 games of semifinals at the 2014 GIBA Open, extended it to more than 200 pins and then held on until the last game, when he fell to third as Jonathan Schalow and Brad Miller surged by him.</span></p> <p>By that time, those three players and several others in the 43-player field were lofting the left gutter cap, some to an extreme degree and none more so than Schalow, who was nearly Brian Valenta-esque as he surged to the lead.</p> <p>As one of the top college players in the country and a power player, Gasn is used to lofting the cap and very good at it. But late in Sunday&rsquo;s semis, he had torn open the base of his thumb and even patched up, it was noticeably impacting his shotmaking with the force used in lofting the cap.</p> <p>But the lanes were freshly oiled for the 5-man stepladder finals on lanes 13-14 at Cherry Lanes in the Diamond Jo Casino complex and that ended the cap lofting.</p> <p>And after Shea Bittenbender downed Brunswick staffer Dave Beres 234-203 in the opening match, Gasn went back to the scoring machine he was early on Sunday on the difficult pattern designed by Cherry Lanes manager Bob Hochrein, defeating Bittenbender 229-179, Miller 227-170 and Brunswick staffer Schalow 253-166.</p> <p>All three of those losing bowlers made better shots than their scores indicated, but some bad breaks &mdash; notably a sixth frame 4-7-9 by Bittenbender between strikes &mdash; and some touchy ball reaction doomed them to low scores.</p> <p>Miller, for example, had a pair of 2-10s, a 2-8-10,&nbsp; a 4-pin and one strike on lane 14, while Schalow had a pair of 2-10s on 13 with different balls.</p> <p>Gasn, meanwhile, used a rough surface Roto Grip RUMBLE (sorry for wrongly stating that it was a HY-ROAD SOLID on the webcast) the first game and then switched to a shiny HY-ROAD &mdash; the 40<sup>th</sup>! he has drilled, he said &mdash; for the last two games, which is what he said he&rsquo;d done off fresh oil earlier.</p> <p id="yui_3_16_0_1_1408353250499_59791">"There are a lot of great bowlers in the Midwest, and there were a lot of great bowlers in this tournament, so it feels pretty good to come out on top," Gasn told Jim Leitner, sports editor of the&nbsp;Dubuque Telegraph Herald, after his win. "I'm still kind of out of breath, because we did an awful lot of bowling today, but it feels good to win it.&nbsp;But I'm ready to pass out right now, honestly."&nbsp;</p> <p>(The paper has a paywall on its website so a link only works for subscribers, so Leitner gave me permission to use his story in this blog.)</p> <p>Other than Beres, who was playing up about 10-board, the players moved in from about 15-board at the arrows to about 20 at the arrows in the stepladder, with Schalow saying after he struck out in the 10<sup>th</sup> frame that he had moved even deeper and got a better reaction and should have been there at the start of the title game.</p> <p id="yui_3_16_0_1_1408353250499_59856">"The final pair (of lanes) was tough, but it wasn't unachievable," Schalow told Leitner. "It was more a matter of poor decision making on my part. I wasn't playing the right part of the lanes with the right ball until it was too late. Going into the last match, I made a ball change and I experienced a lack of motion at the breakpoint.</p> <p>"I bowled really well (Saturday) and today, but I just wasn't able to finish the way I would have liked. It was still an amazing experience. Jeff (Richgels) and Joe (Engelkes) run a great tournament."</p> <p>Gasn talked about lofting, his thumb, the stepladder finals, the balls he used and the tournament in general Sunday night on The Bowlers Show. Listen to the interview <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>. And he wrote an excellent blog on the weekend <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p id="yui_3_16_0_1_1408353250499_59791">He told Leitner that "I knew my ball reaction was good on the fresher part of the (oil) pattern, and I knew it wasn't going to be like it was toward the end of the day (in qualifying) when I bowled bad.&nbsp;It was just a matter of making sure my thumb didn't split open again. I patched it up pretty well and let it sit for a while. I just had to get used to the texture of the patch."</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">First was $2,500, second $1,700, third $1,400, fourth $1,100 and fifth $900, down to $200 for 42</span><sup>nd</sup><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;"> and 43</span><sup>rd</sup><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;"> as the tournament paid out well above the total entry fees thanks to the sponsorship of Cherry Lanes and the Diamond Jo Casino, Coors Light and Storm Products. Greater Iowa Bowling Association operator Joe Engelkes also donated more than half of the bracket proceeds to fund $150 checks to three seniors and two women.</span></p> <p>The final results and prize winnings are posted as a PDF at the end of this blog. Be aware the total pins and overall averages are impacted by the bonus points each bowler earned. The second round shows 14 games because we had to add first a game 13 for the bonus, and eventually a game 14 as bowlers went above 300 bonus pins since the program won&rsquo;t allow a game higher than 300 to be entered.&nbsp;</p> <p>In addition, the PDF from qualifying and a picture that captures most of the results (with bonus pins each game) of the last several games of competition is among the pictures at the end of this blog. My story on qualifying is <a href="../../../news/article/6830" target="_blank"><strong>here</strong></a>.</p> <p>The semifinals featured a format from the fertile mind of Mike Flanagan that most of the bowlers praised as different and fun to bowl. It awarded 1 to 43 bonus pins each game of the semifinals: 43 to the highest score, 42 for the second-highest score, down to 1 for the lowest score. It made for big swings during the day and a wild finish as fourth through 10<sup>th</sup> ended up only about 20 pins apart.</p> <p>I heard nothing but positive feedback &mdash; I am happy to hear any and all comments &mdash; on the format and the tournament, with the only negative being the workload it put on GIBA operator Joe Engelkes, his wife Rosie and daughter Jennifer and the time it took to figure the scores and standings each game. They had to figure the bonus pins each game and then enter both the scores and bonus pins for each of the 43 players player each game. Getting results out also was delayed by having pairs with four and three bowlers, which meant by the end some were getting done a game ahead of others.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Still, we definitely will use the format next year and the tournament almost certainly will be on the same weekend. We considered moving it to the traditional bowling season in late September, but Cherry Lanes general manager Bob Hochrein said that would mean not being able to donate the lineage, which would be a substantial hit to the prize fund.</span></p> <p><em><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Update: Tyler Vostry did an analysis of the results removing the Flanagan Format bonus pins and sent it to me as an XLS file. I can't post an XLS file so I converted it to a PDF that I attached to the end of this blog. It might be a bit of a tricky read, but the important fact is that the bonus pins had some impact, but not a great impact: the top four of Schalow, Miller, Gasn and Beres would be the same both ways, with the major change being that Tom Hess would replace Bittenbender in the top five (before the stepladder). That is mainly due to the fact that Hess was stellar on Saturday, while Bittenbender was stellar on Sunday and therefore got a bigger boost from the bonus pins.&nbsp;Removing the bonus pins would have resulted in many more differences in the standings past fifth place.</span></em></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Gasn did not enter the Bet to Win so $490 will carry over to next year's tournament.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>So make your plans for the third weekend of August next year. As soon as the dates are finalized, I will get a blog posted.</p> <p>Gasn&rsquo;s plans didn&rsquo;t include the Open until Wednesday, though I sent him and Carbonetto and former Robert Morris college teammate Marshall Kent and girlfriend Danielle McEwan messages inviting them. Kent, who now is a PBA member, bowled the PBA Regional in Ohio, but Gasn and Carbonetto elected to come to Dubuque.</p> <p>I wanted them in the tournament because they are some of the world&rsquo;s top young players and I wanted to see them competing, and they added prestige and credibility to the tournament.</p> <p>I asked Engelkes to put me with Gasn and Carbonetto in qualifying &mdash; Joe lets bowlers bowl with who they want with random draws for pairs &mdash; and although I bowled terrible, I had a great time watching them compete.</p> <p>One weakness in my writing is that I don&rsquo;t have experience observing and/or competing with many of the top young players and I can&rsquo;t provide as much insight as I can with players I&rsquo;m familiar with.</p> <p>I now have plenty of insight on Gasn and Carbonetto and can confidently say that they are every bit as good as I perceived &mdash; they proved it in Dubuque over the weekend. Carbonetto was the high woman in the tournament, missing the cut by just six pins and easily should have made it.</p> <p>I met Kent and McEwan at the USBC Open Championships a couple of years ago and knowing these four a bit now, one thing that strikes me is how polished and professional they are as bowlers and people.</p> <p>The way they (and many other young standouts) carry themselves at a young age and perform on the lanes is far advanced over how I was at their age &mdash; I had loads of raw talent but was pretty much a knucklehead &mdash; and I attribute that to all of the training available for kids today in youth bowling, college bowling, the Team USA program, etc.</p> <p>I experienced none of that and learned what I learned competing with adults for money. I was very lucky to hook up with Rich Wonders&rsquo; great group and eventually learn what I needed to learn, but they certainly are more prepared for top level bowling than I was at their age.</p> <p>While James passed up his final year of eligibility to turn pro, Gasn stayed for his final year and is working on a degree in computer science to add to the degree in business he already has earned.</p> <p>The four young standouts leave for Thailand on Tuesday for a World Bowling Tour tournament and I wish them luck.</p> <p>I hope they and more young standouts can make it back to Dubuque next year.</p> <p><a href=""><strong>The livestream archives of the Open can be accessed and viewed at this page</strong></a>.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">Special thanks to Craig Elliott of for coming to Dubuque to webcast the event.<br /></span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.428571429;">I also want to thank everyone who bought a T-shirt and donated to Green Acres Boxer Rescue. It's still possible to buy a T-shirt for a few more days before the campaign closes and the shirts are made and shipped. When we have a final donation total, I will update <a href="../../../news/article/6815" target="_blank"><strong>this blog</strong></a>.</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Sun, 17 Aug 2014 22:00:00 -0600