Trying to decipher the results of this week’s PBA World Series of Bowling isn’t easy, but here’s a stab at it from a Western New York angle.
Considering the splash the WNY contingent made in the first WSOB in 2009, when Jack Jurek won the Shark pattern championship and Ryan Ciminelli was runner-up in two events, this year’s results were a bit disappointing. However, the week was not a total washout for the WNY pros on what’s left of the PBA Tour.
The World Series began last Saturday with competition in the Cheetah (oil pattern) championships followed each day by tournament on the Viper, Scorpion and Chameleon patterns. The scores for each “animal pattern” event were totaled to determine the match-play qualifiers for the PBA World Championship which began on Wednesday.
Joe Ciccone of Buffalo was the only area bowler to qualify for match play in the World Championship. He qualified 24th for the 24-bowler field and finished 22nd after 24 match games and earned $3,200. He was held back by his 5-18-1 record in match play, losing four matches with scores of 245 or higher.
Brad Angelo of Lockport was 40th and earned $1,650, John Szczerbinski of North Tonawanda earned $1,200 for his 55th place and Ryan Ciminelli of Cheektowaga picked up $1,350 for finishing 49th. Jack Jurek of Lackawanna did not cash.
Angelo, of course, led the Viper qualifying and sits atop the stepladder for that championship finals which will be bowled today at South Point Bowling Center. The Viper matches will be taped for showing on Sunday, Dec. 23 on ESPN. Angelo was the only casher from WNY.
Ciccone (10th place, $2,500) and Ciminelli (12th, $2,050) cashed in the Cheetah championship. Ciccone (24th, $870) and Szczerbinski (27th, $840) cashed in the Chameleon event. None of the locals cashed in the Scorpion championship.
Liz Johnson of Cheektowaga will bowl Sunday in the three-bowler finals of the World Bowling Tour women’s championship at South Point. Johnson, who qualified third with 295 points on the tour, will face rival Kelly Kulick of Union, N.J., who was second with 344 WBT points in the first match. The winner will face Missy Parkin of Lake Forest, Calif. for the title. Parkin led the WBT with 369 points. The women’s finals will be taped for showing on Sunday, Dec. 9 on ESPN, the same day the WBT men’s final will be shown.
Besides Angelo, the top qualifiers for other stepladder finals which will be bowled today and Sunday are: Osku Palermaa of Finland (Scorpion). Jason Belmonte of Australia (Chameleon) and Mike Wolfe of New Albany, Ind., (Cheetah). Belmonte is the top qualifier for the five-bowler finals of the World Championship also.
After the World Series is over, the PBA Tour will be off until January when the new “Winter Swing” gets underway with a qualifying tournament in Allen Park, Mich. Jan. 19. Four more tournaments will be bowled (and taped for future TV shows) over the next week in Allen Park. The first live TV event will be the finals of the USBC Masters at North Brunswick, N.J. on Sunday, Feb.. 24.
Of course, Select pros will bowl in the Japan Cup late this month in Tokyo.
Baker a big winner
Lindsay Baker, niece of PBA Hall of Famer Tom Baker, was the individual star of this year’s USBC Women’s Championships in Reno. The former Sweet Home and University of Nebraska Collegiate Bowler of the Year, won three titles in the national tournament and just missed a fourth.
Baker, who now lives in Brigham City, Utah, rolleed a 784 series in doubles, 735 in singles and 707 in team to take the Scratch All-Events crown with 2,226, the third highest all-events score in the tournament’s 93-year history. Joei Woesner of Oregon, Ohio, set the all-events record (2,330) in 2010.
Baker teamed with Elysia Current of Ephrata, Pa., to win Scratch Doubles and tie for first in Diamond Doubles, a handicap division.
“I’m completely ecstatic,” Baker said after the tournament scores were made official. “It’s been an interesting few weeks waiting, but I’m glad it worked out the way it did. I’ve put so much time and effort into my game, and there are so few opportunities for female bowlers, so I’m really excited. I also got to bowl with a doubles partner who is such a great talent, so I’m happy we get to share this.”
Baker was second in Diamond All-Events with a 2,262 handicap total, only seven pins behind Joyce Biondo of Carpentersville, Ill.
• Judy Mazierski, Sharon Shackelford and Norma Holland were winners in the Greater Buffalo USBC Association Senior Women’s Tournament last weekend at AMF Airport Lanes. Mazierski won the Class C (50-59 years) with a 674 total. Shackelford took the title in Class B (60-69) with 714 and Holland won Class A (70 and over) with 708. A field of 116 bowlers participated for a prize fund of $1,999, which included a $1,000 donation by the GBUSBC.
The winners received $50 for travel expenses and paid entry to the 2013 New York State USBC Women’s Senior Singles Championship in Oswego.
• The Next GBUSBC event will be the 45th Annual Youth Family Tournament at Voelker’s Lanes next Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 18 and Nov. 24-25. There will be five divisions with a $150 scholarship awarded to the first place youth in each division.