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Marshall Kent rolls to top seed at 2016 U.S. Open

Marshall Kent of Yakima, Washington, continued his dominance at the 2016 U.S. Open on Tuesday and earned the top seed for the stepladder finals.

The stepladder finals will air live on CBS Sports Network on Wednesday at 8 p.m. Eastern. The champion will take home $30,000 and the coveted green jacket. The 2016 event features a prize fund of $214,000, which includes $100,000 in added money.

The finalists of the 2016 U.S. Open: From left, Marshall Kent, Francois Lavoie, Anthony Simonsen, Shawn Maldonado and John Szczerbinski.

Kent, a 24-year-old right-hander, posted a 20-4 record in match play to lead the field by nearly 275 pins with a 56-game total of 13,467, including bonus pins.

Canada’s Francois Lavoie earned the No. 2 seed with a 13,195 total, and 2016 United States Bowling Congress Masters champion Anthony Simonsen of Princeton, Texas, is No. 3 with 12,985.

The opening match in Wednesday’s championship round will feature No. 4 Shawn Maldonado of Houston taking on No. 5 John Szczerbinski of North Tonawanda, New York. Maldonado finished with 12,904, while Szczerbinski had 12,877.

Kent was in a tie for 92nd place after Friday’s opening round but rebounded by averaging more than 233 over the remaining 48 games.

“It’s been incredible,” said Kent, who will be looking for his third Professional Bowlers Association Tour title and first major victory.

“After the way I started, I didn’t expect to even come close to making the show, so to be the No. 1 seed is an unbelievable feeling. With one game, anything can happen, but I’m just going with the same thought process that got me here – have fun, stay relaxed and just let the bowling take care of itself.”

The five-time Team USA member relied on his mental approach as much as his physical game to make it through the 56-game marathon.

“I took some really good notes on the pairs this week,” Kent said. “I feel like I saw the lanes, pair to pair, much better than most. Mentally, I was as clear as I’ve ever been, and I think that was a big advantage. A lot of players get frustrated when the ball didn’t do the right thing. I took the logical route and tried to figure out why, and that saved me a lot of games and frustration.”

Kent also made the television show at the 2013 U.S. Open as an amateur, finishing in fourth. He hopes to use that experience to his advantage against the fresh faces in the stepladder.

Maldonado is the oldest among the five competitors at 30 years old, and only Simonsen previously has won a major championship. Lavoie, Maldonado and Szczerbinski are looking for their first PBA Tour titles.

“I think my experience in 2013 is going to help a ton,” said Kent, who finished ninth at the 2015 U.S. Open. “It’s a different feeling bowling under the lights, especially at a major. To have that experience under your belt, especially with such a youthful show, will play to my favor. I’ll hope for the best and see what happens.”

2016USOpenLogoAll competitors at the 2016 U.S. Open bowled 24 qualifying games over three days, before the field was cut to the top 57 for eight additional games. The 32-game pinfall totals determined the 24 players for round-robin match play.

Each round of the 2016 U.S. Open leading up to the stepladder finals was broadcast live on Xtra Frame, the exclusive online bowling channel for the Professional Bowlers Association.

For more information on U.S. Open, click here.

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2016 U.S. Open – Match Play Round One (fifth round overall)

Players with position, hometown, W-L-T record and 40-game total, including bonus pins (30 bonus pins for a win, 15 bonus pins for a tie); *(a) denotes amateur

Complete Results:
Match Play Round 3
Match Play Round 2
Match Play Round 1
Casher’s Round
Round 3 Qualifying
Round 2 Qualifying
Round 1 Qualifying

1, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 20-4-0, 13,467
2, Francois Lavoie, Canada, 14-10-0, 13,195
3, Anthony Simonsen, Princeton, Texas, 16-8-0, 12,985
4, Shawn Maldonado, Houston, 11-12-1, 12,904
5, John Szczerbinski, North Tonawanda, N.Y., 16-7-1, 12,877

Missed Cut:
6, Martin Larsen, Sweden, 14-10-0, 12,737, $5,500
7, Andres Gomez, Hollywood, Fla., 13-11-0, 12,696, $5,375
8, Arturo Quintero (a), Mexico, 10-12-2, 12,628, $5,250
9, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., 16-8-0, 12,625, $5,125
10, DJ Archer, Spring, Texas, 11-13-0, 12,524, $5,000
11, Pontus Andersson (a), Sweden, 10-14-0, 12,489, $4,875
12, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 11-13-0, 12,461, $4,750
13, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 11-11-2, 12,431, $4,650
14 Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 12-12-0, 12,379, $4,487
(tie) Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., 12-12-0, 12,379, $4,487
16, Brad Miller, Raytown, Mo., 13-11-0, 12,376, $4,325
17, Kristopher Prather, Milton, Fla., 10-14-0, 12,375, $4,150
18, Walter Ray Williams Jr, Oxford, Fla., 12-12-0, 12,333, $4,025
19, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 6-18-0, 12,300, $3,900
20, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 10-14-0, 12,279, $3,775
21 Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 8-15-1, 12,199, $3,587
(tie) Paul Moor, United Kingdom, 8-15-1, 12,199, $3,587
23, AJ Chapman (a), Wichita, Kan., 10-14-0, 12,189, $3,400
24, Thomas Larsen*, Denmark, 4-3-0, 11,608, $2,888
25, Sam Cooley*, Australia, 7-10-0, 10,455, $2,888

* Larsen replaced Cooley after he withdrew in Game 2 of the third round of match play.

Author: Herbert Bickel
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