John Burkett learns valuable $5 lesson in PBA'S XF Lubbock Southwest Open


    2015 PBA Spare Shots #26

    O'Keefe, Kennard, Sullins and Ventura find success on PBA Regional Tour; what's new on Xtra Frame and Modern Classics

    2014PBAWSOBJohnBurkett.jpgJohn Burkett said he learned a valuable lesson during the Xtra Frame PBA Lubbock Southwest Open on his way to winning an additional $5 in prize money.

    The former Major League All-Star pitcher, in his rookie year as a PBA50 competitor, bowled A Squad in the nine-game qualifying round of last week's tournament at South Plains Lanes in Lubbock, Texas.

    When a tournament field is too large to accommodate all players on the same squad, the field is split into A and B Squads, one following the other, and scores for all players are combined when both squads are finished.

    In cases like that, it's common practice to predict that half of the players from each squad will make the cut to advance to the next round.

    In Lubbock, that meant roughly 29 players from each squad were expected to advance. So when Burkett finished his nine games Saturday and sat in 40th place, he assumed there was no way he was going to be among the top 59 advancing to Sunday's cashers' round.

    "I learned a lesson," Burkett said. "I never figured the squad split would be like that, so I drove home."

    Home was roughly 320 miles and five hours away in Southlake, Texas. As he approached home, Burkett was monitoring Xtra Frame and found out he had, in fact, qualified for the cashers' round in 58th place. After getting three hours of sleep, he turned around and drove five hours back to Lubbock.

    2014PBAWSOBJohnBurkett2.jpgIf he had withdrawn from the tournament and stayed home, he would have earned $500 for finishing 59th. Instead, he bowled his six-game cashers' round and wound up finishing 51st, earning $505 – a net gain of $5.

    The money had absolutely nothing to do with his decision to return to Lubbock.

    "If you look at my baseball career, I took the mound every fifth day," the 50-year-old Burkett said. "When I sign up for a tournament, I obligate myself to bowl the whole event. I don't think it's professional to quit. Out of respect to the PBA, the other players, the tournament host, you finish the event. I wouldn't want to look people in the face if I quit. I have too much respect for the sport.

    "And I also believe in myself," he added. "After the first two games, I moved up 24 places to 34th. But the lanes changed so fast after the second game, I couldn't make the adjustment. The transition completely confused me.

    "Nah, I wasn't tired," he said. "I usually only sleep six hours a night anyway, so three hours' sleep wasn't a problem. Plus I don't like to make excuses.

    "But I will admit I wasn't looking forward to another five-hour drive back home," he said with a laugh.


    This month on Xtra Frame: Teens, Women, Seniors, PBA stars

    PBA's Xtra Frame schedule of programming for the month of July covers every age group and gender: teens, women, seniors and PBA's core of standard players, beginning with an extended Fourth of July schedule from Las Vegas, where Xtra Frame will visit South Point Bowling Plaza to cover the Teen Masters National Championships (June 30-July 3) and the Collegiate Masters (July 4-5).

    On July 8 and 9, Xtra Frame will video-stream a non-PBA event, the MOTIV Revolution Tournament, from Thunderbowl Lanes in Allen Park, Mich. Immediately afterward, Professional Women's Bowling Association competition will make its Xtra Frame debut with start-to-finish coverage of the PWBA Storm Sacramento Open, July 10-11, from Steve Cook's Fireside Lanes in Citrus Heights, Calif.

    Xtra Frame returns to South Plains Lanes in Lubbock – host of the recently-completed XF PBA Lubbock Sports Southwest Open – July 17-18 for exclusive coverage of the PWBA Lubbock Sports Open. Start-to-finish coverage of the PBA50 Tour Treasure Island Resort & Casino Open presented by Roto Grip from Island Xtreme Bowl in Welch, Minn., is set for July 20-22.

    Closing out the July schedule will be the PWBA Wichita Open from Northrock Lanes in Wichita, Kan., July 24-25, and opening the August schedule will be the PBA/PWBA Xtra Frame Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles from Palace Lanes in Houston, Texas, July 31-Aug. 2.

    Bowling fans who want to sample Xtra Frame can subscribe on a three-day basis for only $3.99. A full month's worth of Xtra Frame programming cost only $7.99. PBA's best package is the 12-month XF Season Ticket for $64.99, or $5.41 per month.


    Rash vs. Belmonte "Super Clash" joins PBA Modern Classics on Friday

    2014PBA03SeanRash_small.jpg2015PBA08JasonBelmonte_small.jpgThe head-to-head Super Clash between PBA rivals Sean Rash (left) and Jason Belmonte (right), contested during the 2014 PBA Winter Swing in Allen Park, Mich., will join the library of PBA Modern Classics on PBA's YouTube channel on Friday. You'll be able to quickly access the program using by clicking here.

    Some of the PBA's most memorable recent telecasts will become part of the PBA Modern Classic library on PBA's YouTube channel, with new additions to the collections planned for every other Friday.


    PBA Regional Update: Shannon O'Keefe, Anthony Kennard win titles in Fort Wayne

    Shannon O'Keefe of O'Fallon, Ill., and Anthony Kennard of Wapakoneta, Ohio won titles in the PWBA Central Open, presented by PBA, and PBA Pro Bowl West Central/Midwest Challenge doubleheader at Pro Bowl West in Fort Wayne, Ind., on Saturday, June 27.

    O'Keefe, a five-time WTBA World Champion and the head women's bowling coach at McKendree University, defeated Jodi Woessner of Oregon, Ohio by 97 pins to win the PBA Central Region's Professional Women's Bowling Association title. O'Keefe, who finished with an eight-game total of 1,836 pins, earned $1,200 in the women only event.

    Kennard defeated amateur Dan Higgins of Westerville, Ohio, 238-220, to win the joint PBA Central-Midwest regional "challenge" event, which was open to PBA members and non-members who have not won a PBA event. The title earned Kennard $1,500 along with eligibility to enter the 2016 PBA Tournament of Champions.

    2014PBA50HarrySullins2.jpg2013PBA50ColumbusCentralOpenSammyVentura2.jpgHarry Sullins (left) of Chesterfield Twp., Mich., defeated Dave Traber of Hebron, Ill., by 53 pins to win the PBA50 Tony Grigat Allstate Agent Midwest Open at Fox Bowl in Wheaton, Ill., on Sunday. Sullins, who finished with a 15-game total of 3,242 pins, including match play bonus pins, earned $1,500 along with his 19th career PBA50 Regional title.

    Sammy Ventura (right) of Syracuse, N.Y., defeated Marty Berke of Allentown, Pa., 205-226, 277-256, 216-203, in the best-of-three-game title match to win $1,700 and his seventh PBA Regional title in the PBA50 SpareTimes Hampton South Open at SpareTimes Lanes in Hampton, Va., Sunday.

    Three events over the Fourth of July weekend include the PBA and the women-only PWBA Gastonia South Open doubleheader presented by Brunswick at George Pappas' Liberty Lanes in Gastonia, N.C., plus the Grand Casino Hotel & Resort Southwest Member/Non-Member Doubles at FireLake Bowling Center in Shawnee, Okla.

    For complete PBA Regional schedules, rules and entry information, click here and open the "schedules" tab and click on Regional Tours to find the event(s) in your area.


    Quick Notes

    The PBA Network is expanding its presence in the social media arena again, unveiling a new PBA Tour page ("pbatour") on Instagram. Fans also can follow photo diaries of a growing number of PBA Tour players who have created their own personal accounts on Instagram. To find out which players currently have Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram accounts, visit, click on the "Bowlers" tab and open PBA Tour Bowlers.

    Reminders: Book a room through the "Book Hotel" link on and you will be automatically entered into's monthly sweepstakes that awards a $200 lodging gift certificate. June's winner is Jennifer Vest of Chillicothe, Ohio. Or sign up for a new Xtra Frame subscription –monthly or XF Season Ticket – and you could win a new MOTIV bowling ball in the monthly MOTIV Xtra Frame sweepstakes, like Joe Goldstein of San Bruno, Calif., did in the July sweepstakes.


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