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NYC WTT KingPins earns No. 1 seed for PBA League Finals

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The GEICO New York City WTT KingPins, winners of the inaugural PBA League Elias Cup championship in 2013, earned the No. 1 seed for this weekend’s L.L.Bean PBA League finals at Bayside Bowl in Portland, Maine, averaging 240.63 to pace the eight teams of Professional Bowlers Association stars who bowled for seeding positions during an eight-game qualifying round at Bayside Bowl Thursday.

NYC WTT KingPins from left to right: John Szczerbinski, Marshall Kent, Danielle McEwan, team manager Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, Sam Cooley and Pete Weber.

The KingPins, led by PBA Hall of Famer Pete Weber and including returning team members Marshall Kent and John Szczerbinski along with newcomers Danielle McEwan and Sam Cooley, led the qualifying round by 35 pins over the Live + Work in Maine Silver Lake Atom Splitters, the only team that has won the Elias Cup twice.

The KingPins, as the No. 1 team, will meet the No. 8 Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen in their opening match of the single-elimination bracket competition that begins Saturday.

PBA League competition will involve best-of-two-game Baker format matches in which team play requires each of the five players to bowl two frames to complete a game. In the best-of-two-game competition, if a match ends in a tie, one player from each team will throw one shot in a sudden-death roll-off until the outcome is decided.

“I don’t think qualifying first means much other than it was a good opportunity to see how we meshed with our new players (McEwan and Cooley),” KingPins manager Carolyn Dorin-Ballard said. “Danielle is really solid in the leadoff position and Sam just fit right in. So we’re ready to kick butt and take names.”

The quarterfinal rounds will be contested at noon and 3 p.m. ET Saturday. Saturday’s winners advance to the semifinal round matches at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, followed by the Elias Cup championship match at 7 p.m.

The final match will involve singles, doubles and trios matches worth one point each, and a five-player team contest worth three points. If the match is tied, it will be settled by a one-ball sudden-death roll-off.

All PBA League matches will be recorded for delayed telecast on ESPN, but also will be live-streamed on ESPN3/WatchESPN as they happen.

Past PBA League Elias Cup winners include the NYC WTT KingPins in 2013, the Silver Lake Atom Splitters in 2014 and 2015, and the Dallas Strikers in 2016. Past Mark Roth Most Valuable Player Award winners were Chris Barnes (2014), Dick Allen (2015) and Tommy Jones (2016). The award wasn’t presented in 2013.

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L.L.Bean PBA League Qualifying Results

Teams with position and 8-game total; ; finishing position determines the team’s seeding for the PBA League finals

1, GEICO NYC WTT KingPins (manager Carolyn Dorin-Ballard; Pete Weber, Marshall Kent, John Szczerbinski, Danielle McEwan, Sam Cooley), 1,925.
2, Live + Work in Maine Silver Lake Atom Splitters (manager Mark Baker; Chris Barnes, Tom Daugherty, Jesper Svensson, Shawn Maldonado, DJ Archer), 1,890.
3, L.L.Bean Portland Lumberjacks (manager Tim Mack; Wes Malott, Ryan Ciminelli, Liz Johnson, Kyle Troup, Bryon Smith), 1,877.
4, Shipyard Dallas Strikers (player-manager Norm Duke; Norm Duke, Tommy Jones, Bill O’Neill, Rhino Page, BJ Moore), 1,872.
5, Lee Auto Malls L.A. X (manager Andrew Cain; Jason Belmonte, Stuart Williams, Martin Larsen, Osku Palermaa, Jakob Butturff), 1,837.
6, Barbasol Motown Muscle (manager Del Ballard Jr.; EJ Tackett, Anthony Simonsen, Josh Blanchard, Francois Lavoie, Dick Allen), 1,814.
7, MaineQuarterly.com Brooklyn Styles (manager Johnny Petraglia; Sean Rash, Parker Bohn III, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Jason Sterner, Jon Van Hees), 1,808.
8, Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen (manager Jason Couch; Dom Barrett; Tom Smallwood; Chris Loschetter, Ronnie Russell, Dave Wodka), 1,781.

L.L.Bean PBA League Elias Cup Schedule

Bayside Bowl in Portland, Maine, April 14 and 15, 2017

Saturday, April 15, 2017 (ESPN PBA League Quarterfinals)
9 a.m. – L.L.Bean/Shipyard Brewing Tailgate Party
Noon – L.L.Bean PBA League Quarterfinals (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN; ESPN telecast Sunday, April 23 at 1 p.m. ET)
Match One: GEICO NYC WTT KingPins vs. Sysco Philadelphia Hitmen.
Match Two: Lee Auto Malls L.A. X vs. Shipyard Dallas Strikers.
3:30 p.m. – L.L.Bean PBA League Quarterfinals (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN; ESPN telecast Sunday, April 30 at 1 p.m. ET)
Match Three: Live + Work in Maine Silver Lake Atom Splitters vs. MaineQuarterly.com Brooklyn Styles.
Match Four: Barbasol Motown Muscle vs. L.L.Bean Portland Lumberjacks.

Sunday, April 16, 2017 (ESPN PBA League Semifinals and Finals)
4:30 p.m. – L.L.Bean PBA League Semifinals (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN; ESPN telecast Sunday, May 7 at 1 p.m. ET)
Semifinal Match One: Winner Match One vs. Winner Match Two.
Semifinal Match Two: Winner Match Three vs. Winner Match Four.
7 p.m. – L.L.Bean PBA League Elias Cup finals (live on ESPN3/WatchESPN; ESPN telecast Sunday, May 14 at 1 p.m. ET)

Author: Herbert Bickel
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