Record holders now champions at USBC Open Championships


    United States

    National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev. (Feb. 17 - June 30, 2007)

    After nearly two months of waiting to see if their 1,544 record total would hold up, first-time participant Jonathan Masur of West Orange, N.J., and Jeffrey Butler of Garfield, N.J., now are officially the Regular Doubles champions at the 2007 United States Bowling Congress Open Championships. The event concluded its 135-day run Sunday at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev.

    In May, Masur walked into the Stadium as a novice, excited about his first appearance on the tournament lanes, and one day later, he struck on 30 of 36 opportunities on the way to games of 279, 278 and 253 for an 810 series and walked out as a celebrity.

    Butler contributed 236, 253 and 245 for 734 and helped the pair topple the four-year-old doubles record of 1,540 set by Derek Sapp of Keokuk, Iowa, (857) and Sean Rash of Anchorage, Alaska, (683) in 2003.

    The news comes as an early birthday present for Masur, who turns 24 on Friday.

    "We'll probably have to do some celebrating soon now that this has turned into such a big week with our win and my birthday coming up," said Masur, who rounded out his Open Championships debut with 631 in team and 595 in singles for a 2,036 all-events total. "The wait was difficult at times, so we're thrilled now that it's over, but the whole experience is one we won't soon forget."

    Bryon Smith of Roseburg, Ore., the 2003 USBC Masters champion, also found instant success as a first-timer at the Open Championships and helped Lava Lanes of Medford, Ore., to the Regular Team title with a 3,405 effort, the first 3,400 in the tournament's five trips to the Stadium.

    Smith led the group with a 750 set and was followed by Brian Tinsley (718), 18-year-old Open Championships rookie Jake Drier (670), Wynn Malikowski (649) and Guy Sutherlin (618).

    "Winning the Masters was a great individual accomplishment, but this win at the Open Championships was a team effort and the most fun I've ever had bowling in a team event," Smith said. "The guys bowled phenomenally, and it was a great experience. I am definitely looking forward to bowling again next year."

    This year also turned out to be special for one of the tournament's most recognizable names, as four-time Open Championships titlist and USBC Hall of Famer Steve Fehr of Cincinnati made his 35th tournament appearance and found his way back to the winner's circle for his fifth title, this time as a member of the Team All-Events winner.

    Although there was a 24 year gap between his third Open Championships win (Regular Team in 1982), and last year's Regular Team title with Browning Pontiac of Eminence, Ky., Fehr only had to wait one year until the same group found its way back to the top of the leaderboard, claiming the Team All-Events crown with a 10,071 total.

    "I never would've even thought about winning titles in back-to-back years, but we are really pleased and excited right now," said Fehr, whose other wins include Classic Doubles in 1978 and Regular All-Events in 1980, as well as the Masters in 1994. "We've definitely been on pins and needles, especially since we got passed in team, but we're relieved now that the tournament is over. We've got a great group of 10 guys, and I'm just really proud."

    Ken Abner, the only bowler to break the 700 mark in all three events this year, led the group with 2,174 and was followed by Ken Jessee (2,094), Steve Fehr (2,031), Jon Murph (1,907) and George Gohagan III (1,865).

    Chip Aki of Nicholasville, Ky., rolled the highest of the tournament's five 800 series and took home the Regular Singles title with games of 279, 277 and 258 for an 814 set back on March 19.

    "The closer it's gotten to the end, the worse the wait has been, but now there's no way to put into words how much it means to be a champion," said Aki, 45, a standout at Wichita State University during the late 1980s. "I've been a student of the game for a long time and had the chance to bowl with some great bowlers and champions, and now to have my name among them is truly an honor."

    The Regular All-Events crown went to Mike Rose Jr. of West Henrietta, N.Y., who had 787 in singles, 724 in doubles and 687 in team for 2,198, the highest all-events total since the tournament's last trip to Reno in 2004.

    In the Classified Division, Roberts Repair of Pontiac, Ill., grabbed the team title with 2,845, which it posted more than three months ago. Felix Salinas Jr. led the way for Roberts Repair with 659 and was followed by Rich Buchheit (610), Rick Rambo (585), Jerry Roberts (513) and Dave Schmidt (478).

    The father and son duo of Frank Smyle Jr. of Reeder, N.D., and Jesse Smyle of Bowman, N.D., are the Classified Doubles winners with 1,287, Lenny Boogaard of Osakis, Minn., is the Classified Singles champion with 673 and Samuel Murray of Toccoa, Ga., followed in his teammate's footsteps and brought the Classified All-Events title back to Georgia for the second consecutive year, claiming the top spot with 1,850.

    To be eligible for competition in the Classified Division, teams must have a combined average of 900 or less, doubles teams must have a combined average of 360 or less and a bowler must enter at 180 or below for singles and all-events.

    "I've had a lot of people ask me about this and how things were going, but it's really hard to believe right now," Boogaard said. "There also were a lot of people around here rooting for me, and I don't think it will sink in until I see the first-place watch."

    Presenting sponsors for the 2007 USBC Open Championships are Eldorado, Silver Legacy and Circus Circus Hotel/Casinos in Reno, Nev. Other participating sponsors are Kegel, official lane maintenance provider, Sands Regency Casino and Hotel, official brackets sponsor and supporting sponsors Atlantis Casino Resort and Spa and Harrah's Casino and Hotel.

    Top 10 division leaders with hometown and pinfalls:


    1, Lava Lanes (Brian Tinsley, Guy Sutherlin, Wynn Malikowski, Jake Drier, Bryon Smith), Medford, Ore., 3,405. 2, Barney's 1, Rogersville, Mo., 3,368. 3, Browning Pontiac, Eminence, Ky., 3,358. 4, Ansara Restaurant Group 1, Detroit, 3,352. 5, Team USA, Chicago, 3,342. 6, Forgey Sports Medicine, Vancouver, Wash., 3,308. 7, Remax By The Bay 2, Baltimore, 3,293. 8, Red Carpet Lanes, Waukesha, Wis., 3,287. 9, S & B Pro Shop 1, Troy, Mich., 3,280. 10, Smith Barney 1, Madison, Wis., 3,261.

    1, Jeffrey Butler, Garfield, N.J./Jonathan Masur, West Orange, N.J., 1,544. 2, Derek Eoff, Greenfield, Wis./Richard Volhard, Rothschild, Wis., 1,467. 3, Ken Duffield, Madison, Wis./Chris Pounders, Sun Prairie, Wis., 1,463. 4, Vinnie Atria, Louisville, Ky./Vernon Peterson, Winter Haven, Fla., 1,439. 5, Mike Shady, Fairview, Pa./Marc McDowell, Madison, Wis., 1,437. 6, David Ewald, Macomb, Mich./Nicholas Wissinger, Utica, Mich., 1,434. 7, Alex Cavagnaro, N. Massapequa, N.Y./Mark Hugo, Windsor Locks, Conn., 1,430. 8, Eric Cox/Steven Smith, San Diego, 1,427. 9, Darren Jones, Waldorf, Md./William Blaney III, Indian Head, Md., 1,424. 10, Ron Woodruff, Emporia, Kan./Michael Doud, Wichita, Kan., 1,417.

    1, Chip Aki, Nicholasville, Ky., 814. 2, David Wilk, Upland, Calif., 804. 3, Craig LeMond, Jasper, Ind., 795. 4, Ken Jessee, Huber Heights, Ohio, 793. 5, Andrew Udahl, Elk Grove, Calif., 792. 6, Chuck Vogt, Chesapeake, Va., 791. 7, Mike Rose Jr., West Henrietta, N.Y., 787. 8 (tie), Chad Gutzman, Mount Pleasant, Mich., and Robert Daugherty, Dayton, Ohio, 783. 10 (tie), Kurt Fay, Hudsonville, Mich., Harry Banks Jr., Coal City, Ill., and Matt McNiel, Chanhassen, Minn. 782.

    1, Mike Rose Jr., West Henrietta, N.Y., 2,198. 2, Ken Abner, Cincinnati, 2,174. 3, David Beres, Waukesha, Wis., 2,164. 4, Mark London, Palatine, Ill., 2,148. 5, Ryan Kretchmer, Rochester, N.Y., 2,141. 6, Bill Hoffman, Columbus, Ohio, 2,138. 7, Jerry Rich Jr., Fairport Harbor, Ohio, 2,136. 8, Mike Gaither, Grain Valley, Mo., 2,134. 9, Mike Shady, Fairview, Pa., 2,126. 10, Dede Davidson, Buellton, Calif., 2,118.

    Team All-Events
    1, Browning Pontiac (Steve Fehr, George Gohagan III, Ken Jessee, Jon Murph, Ken Abner), Eminence, Ky., 10,071. 2, Smith Barney 1, Madison, Wis., 10,040. 3,, Milwaukee, 9,978. 4, Tom's Rhinoplasty, Newton, Iowa, 9,764. 5, S & B Pro Shop 2, Troy, Mich., 9,762. 6, Team USA Support 5, Omaha, Neb., 9,755. 7, Fiji Water, Rochester, N.Y., 9,751. 8, The BRD House 1, Dayton, Ohio, 9,723. 9, Fox Bowl 2, Wheaton, Ill., 9,688. 10, Lakeview Lanes, Fulton, N.Y., 9,676.


    1, Roberts Repair (Dave Schmidt, Jerry Roberts, Rich Bucheit, Rick Rambo, Felix Salinas Jr.), Pontiac, Ill., 2,845. 2, Pfeifer Printing, Champlin, Minn., 2,820. 3, E Montana Flatlanders, Forsyth, Mont., 2,813. 4, All of Them, Warner Robins, Ga., 2,793. 5, Moeller Plastering, St. George, Utah, 2,747. 6, Winkeljohn Printing, Celina, Ohio, 2,743. 7, Huikko's Bowling Center 1, Buffalo, Minn., 2,737. 8, Galaxy-Dew's Crew, Kinston, N.C., 2,737. 9, Doug's Auto Service, Beach Park, Ill., 2,722. 10, Lake County Rollers 1, Clarissa, Minn., 2,719.

    1, Frank Smyle, Reeder, N.D./Jesse Smyle, Bowman, N.D., 1,287. 2, Henry Mancini/Joe Mancini, Las Vegas, 1,257. 3, Anthonius Magturo, Derwood, Md./Howard Jones Jr., Damascus, Md., 1,235. 4, Larry Harvanko, Champlin, Minn./Brett Pfeifer, Minneapolis, 1,232. 5, Felix Fines/Paul Magaoay Jr., Sacramento, Calif., 1,230. 6, Jeffery Rose, Wichita, Kan./Jason Pohl, Austin, Texas, 1,227. 7, Robert Cutsail, Madison, Ga./Richard Vanderheyden, Buckhead, Ga., 1,225. 8, Larry Rupley, Valley Springs, Calif./Jose Noriega, San Antonio, 1,218. 9, Linda Williams/Albert Williams Jr., Bronx, N.Y., 1,212. 10, Wayne Thomas/Gary Finnell, Big Bear Lake, Calif., 1,199.

    1, Lenny Boogaard, Osakis, Minn., 673. 2, Orlando Samonte, Virginia Beach, Va., 672. 3, Matt Klenke, Coldwater, Ohio, 671. 4, Thurman Peterson, Charlotte, N.C., 670. 5, Ken Varner, Lexington, N.C., 664. 6, Rand Syverson, Onamia, Minn., 660. 7, Victor Martinez, Plainfield, Ill., 658. 8 (tie), Tim Frank, Hastings, Neb., and Samuel Murray, Toccoa, Ga., 656. 10 (tie), Jim Shara, Endicott, N.Y., and Brandon Davidson, Mesquite, Texas, 654.

    1, Samuel Murray, Toccoa, Ga., 1,850. 2, Jim Shara, Endicott, N.Y., 1,837. 3, Larry Harvanko, Champlin, Minn., 1,836. 4, Todd Guidry, Lafayette, La., 1,824. 5, Michael Tieden, Blaine, Minn., 1,809. 6, Kris Moore, Morristown, Tenn., 1,808. 7 (tie), Van Vasquez, Longmont, Colo., and Bob Chung, Alameda, Calif., 1,795. 9, Leroy Hayes, Cambridge, Neb., 1,794. 10, Frank Kostik, Ruffs Dale, Pa., 1,789.