Simonsen (pictured right and above), now 20, claimed his third career title and first since becoming the youngest player in PBA history to win a major title when he won the 2016 USBC Masters at age 19.
“I figured out the difference between the two lanes, and that was my advantage,” Simonsen said. “When it’s your day, it’s your day. I’ve been getting frustrated making TV shows and not winning, but you have to keep opening the door.”
Simonsen and Page (left) both ran into early trouble in the title match, leaving four-count splits which neither converted. But Simonsen followed his third-frame split with a string of five strikes to take command of the match while Page struggled to carry strikes. A second unconverted split in the eighth frame ended Page’s hope for his first singles title since since early in 2009.
In a semifinal match duel between two of the PBA’s bright young stars, Simonsen ended EJ Tackett‘s (right) bid for an eighth career title, and fourth in PBA Xtra Frame events, 258-223. Simonsen struck on eight of his first nine shots, but the 24-year-old Tackett was right behind until back-to-back solid 10 pins in the eighth and ninth frames ended his rally.
In the opening match of the four-player stepladder, Tackett left the 3-4-10 split and opened in the first frame, but responded with a string of five strikes. Jason Sterner (left) of Rockledge, Fla., struck on his first shot, but left splits and opened in two of the next three frames to dig a hole he couldn’t escape. Tackett won handily, 242-199.
Next up on the PBA Xtra Frame Tour is the third tournament in the seven-event Xtra Frame Storm Cup points series, the Xtra Frame Greater Jonesboro Open at Jonesboro Bowling Center in Jonesboro, Ark., next Saturday and Sunday.
Both days of competition will be live streamed on PBA’s online bowling channel, Xtra Frame. For subscription and schedule information click here.
EJ Tackett bids for 8th title Monday in PBA XF Wilmington Open
Tommy Jones takes first round lead in PBA XF Wilmington Open
Sold-out field set for PBA Xtra Frame Tour stop in Wilmington
2017 PBA Tour Schedule & Champions
Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center in Wilmington, N.C., USA (May 26-29, 2017)
Anthony Simonsen, center, with proprietors Jim and Margaret Grago
First Match: Tackett def. Sterner, 242-199
Semifinal Match: Simonsen def. Tackett, 258-223
Championship: Simonsen def. Page, 224-177.
Players with position, hometown and 24-game total, including match play bonus pins; top 4 advance to the stepladder finals; places 5-16 show earnings.
1, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 10-2, 5,898
2, Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas, 8-4, 5,811
3, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 8-4, 5,799
4, Jason Sterner, Rockledge, Fla., 8-4, 5,732
5, Dom Barrett, England, 8-4, 5,665, $1,800
6, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., 6-6, 5,602, $1,500
7, Tom Daugherty, Riverview, Fla., 4-7-1, 5,407, $1,300
8, BJ Moore III, Greensburg, Pa., 6-5-1, 5,381, $1,250
9, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 5-7, 5,361, $1,200
10, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 5-7, 5,328, $1,175
11, Ildemaro Ruiz, Venezuela, 4-8, 5,288, $1,150
12, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 6-6, 5,271, $1,100
13, Josh Blanchard, Mesa, Ariz, 5-7, 5,265, $1,075
14, Jeff Evans, Supply, N.C., 6-6, 5,222, $1,050
15, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 3-9, 5,158, $1,025
16, Isaac Kim, Lebanon, Pa., 3-9, 4,992, $1,000
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