Boston Red Sox star Mookie Betts, in his first appearance in PBA Tour competition since the 2017 PBA World Series of Bowling, continued to impress his fellow competitors with his promise as a bowling talent.
A feature story by Fort Worth Star-Telegram writer Jeff Wilson (https://www.star-telegram.com/sports/article239305808.html) includes high praise for Betts’ bowling skills while competing at the highest level of the sport in this week’s PBA Hall of Fame Classic in Arlington, Texas. The first tournament of the 2020 Go Bowling PBA Tour season gave Betts a chance to bowl at an elite level before reporting to spring training with the Red Sox.
Bowling on a PBA Commissioner’s Exemption, Betts had no expectation of winning the tournament against a field of 55 PBA members, 40 of whom are PBA Tour champions.
“The No. 1 thing is don’t come in last,” Betts said. “After that, it’s still competition and making sure you enjoy yourself. Obviously, I’ll do a lot of learning, so when I go back home I can take these things and apply them.”
Bowling on a challenging scoring environment involving different lane conditions applied to the right and left lanes across the bowling center, Betts hoped to finish “even,” which is bowling parlance means a 200 average for his 12 qualifying games. He just missed, averaging 198.58, but he accomplished goal No. 1, finishing in 48th place in the field of 56 – outscoring six PBA title winners.
For additional insight into Betts’ competition in Arlington, watch Lucas Wiseman’s interview on FloBowling: https://www.flobowling.com/video/6650445-mookie-having-fun-enjoys-dream-cross-at-hof-classic.
FLOBOWLING TO LIVESTREAM PBA HALL OF FAME CEREMONIES SATURDAY
FloBowling.com will livestream Saturday’s PBA Hall of Fame induction ceremonies and 2019 awards presentations, beginning at 7:30 p.m. EST. Former PBA co-owners Rob Glaser and Mike Slade will join former partner Chris Peters in the hall while Tommy Jones will be inducted as the newest superior performance inductee. The ceremonies at the
KRIS PRATHER RANKS SECOND IN PBA TELEVISION WINNING PERCENTAGE
As the 2020 PBA Tour closes in on its first television final (PBA Hall of Fame Classic Sunday at 1 p.m. EST on FS1), it’s a good time to review a couple of the PBA’s most notable television records: winning percentage and scoring average.
In the aftermath of the 2019 season, when he won his first two PBA Tour titles (PBA Scorpion Championship and PBA Playoffs), Kris Prather of Plainfield, Ill., moved into second place in winning percentage among PBA Players who have made at least 10 television appearances in singles events. Prather, who has now bowled on television 12 times, has won 13 matches and lost only five times for a 72.22 winning percentage. He trails only Jim Pencak who posted a remarkable 22-8 record in his 12 TV appearances back in the 1989-90 era (73.33 percent success rate).
Currently in the top 10 among active players are Dick Allen (tied for seventh with Steve Martin with a 13-7 record in 14 appearances for a 65.00 winning percentage) and Jesper Svensson in ninth place (21-12, 63.63 per cent in 21 appearances).
It’s also interesting to note that in the history of PBA televised matches, only 25 qualifying players have won at least 60 per cent of their TV matches.
In the scoring category, five active players are among the top 10 in career averages for at least 10 singles events, led by Ryan Ciminelli with a 232.05 average for 31 games in 19 appearances and No. 2 Jakob Butturff who has averaged 230.14 for 15 games in 13 appearances. Svensson is eighth on the list with a 226.23 average for 33 games in 21 appearances.
But most impressive on the list – are two superstars with more than 100 games on television: PBA Hall of Famers Norm Duke, who ranks fourth on the all-time list with a 228.88 average for 189 games in 118 appearances, and Walter Ray Williams Jr. who is right behind Duke, scoring at a 228.21 pace for his record 228 games bowled in 177 TV appearances.
PBA, PWBA TO TEAM UP FOR SPECIAL MIXED DOUBLES EVENT AT BOWL EXPO
The PBA and PWBA will team up for a mixed doubles special event featuring four teams representing the sport’s biggest brand names that will be held in conjunction with International Bowl Expo, the bowling industry’s largest annual gathering, will host a special made-for-TV event featuring the biggest names on the sport’s professional tours.
The made-for-TV event will be held at the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center in Denver, Colo., and televised live on FS1 on Sunday, July 5, at 7 p.m. Eastern. The two-hour show will include Bill O’Neill and Shannon O’Keefe (at left), representing Hammer; Dom Barrett and Dasha Kovalova as Brunswick teammates; Jason Belmonte and Danielle McEwan, bowling for Storm, and EJ Tackett and Maria José Rodriguez, competing for Team MOTIV.
Worth noting, the pairings will re-unite O’Neill and O’Keefe who are three-time winners of the PBA-PWBA Storm Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles championship (2013, ’15 and ’16), held annually in Houston.
The PWBA/PBA Mixed Doubles will have two one-game Baker format semifinal matches, with matchups determined by blind draw. The winning teams will bowl for the title. The television show, organized in cooperation with the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America and the USBC, also will include a special one-ball roll-off between the 2020 Intercollegiate Singles Championships men’s and women’s winners will be held between the PBA-PWBA semifinals and title matches.
International Bowl Expo will take place July 2-6 with the TV show taking place following the first day of the event’s trade show on July 5. Bowl Expo is the annual industry event hosted by BPAA, featuring educational seminars, trade show, national speakers, entertainment and more. Visit BPAA.com/BowlExpo to learn more.
PBA PLAYER’S PERSPECTIVE: JAKOB BUTTURFF RE-VISITS 2019 OKLAHOMA OPEN WIN
The newest edition of the PBA Player’s Perspective interview series features Jakob Butturff sharing insight into his victory in the 2019 PBA Oklahoma Open. The episode debuts on Tuesday, Jan. 21, as Butturff prepares to defend his title in the 2020 Oklahoma Open in Shawnee, Okla.
To view all of the PBA Player’s Perspective episodes, visit the PBA’s YouTube channel and click on the PBA Player’s Perspective play list. The weekly series will add a new perspective every Tuesday. The following players will provide personal play-by-play reflections in the weeks ahead:
• Jan. 28 – Sean Rash will take a look into his past, revealing what he experienced in winning the 2012 PBA Tournament of Champions in Las Vegas.
Player’s Perspectives currently in the archives on YouTube include:
• Norm Duke’s stunning 2011 U.S. Open win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQ0cGzRfnBk).
• Kris Prather’s historic PBA Playoffs victory (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hISjw3KmGCk).
• Anthony Simonsen’s win in the 2019 Bear Open. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tt2k25WKNzQ).
• Sean Rash’s 2019 Wolf Open title (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GNxO2WdaZo).
• EJ Tackett’s Barbasol PBA Tour Finals victory (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVuLOuU8btQ).
• Bill O’Neill’s 2019 Harry O’Neale Chesapeake Open win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xSwE3YYFjso).
• Jason Belmonte’s historic 11th major title victory in the 2019 PBA World Championship (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4QqbkRPirM).
• Jakob Butturff’s 2019 USBC Masters win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cuYcXxfXXs).
• EJ Tackett’s 2017 DHC PBA Japan Invitational victory. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91yoFd7nd8g).
• Kris Prather’s 2019 PBA Scorpion Championship win (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-aVe_n8uCOM).
• Bill O’Neill’s 2019 PBA Hall of Fame Classic victory that made him title-eligible for future PBA HOF consideration (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OeHXCYxWH4o).
Fans can follow all of the latest video clips and more by enrolling as a subscriber to PBA’s YouTube channel. It’s easy and it’s free. Visit YouTube.com/PBABowling and click on the “subscribe” button.
PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: 2020 SEASON BEGINS WITH TWO EVENTS JAN. 17-19
The 2020 PBA Regional season gets underway over the Jan. 17-19 weekend with tournaments in North Carolina and California for PBA50 competitors. Westview Lanes in Wilson, N.C., will host the PBA50 Richie’s Automotive South Open and Tracy Bowl in Tracy, Calif., will host the PBA50 Patton Amusement West Regional.
• For complete PBA Regional schedules including rules and entry information, visit pba.com, open the “schedules” tab and click on PBA Regional Tours to find the event(s) in your area. Whether you are a competitor or a fan, you can follow “live scoring” for all PBA Regional events on pba.com (easily accessible for Apple and Android device users using the PBA app).
• The dates for the PBA50 River City Extreme Open at River City Extreme in Monticello, Minn., have been changed to July 28-31, rather than the June dates previously announced.