Two gold medals within sight for Team USA at Pan Am Games


    2007 Pan Am Games

    Asbaty and Milligan, Page and Schaub lead halfway through doubles

    2007PAGAsbatyMilligan.jpg Strong performances on the first day of bowling competition at the Pan American Games have Team USA in line for a pair of doubles gold medals.

    L-R Diandra Asbaty of Chicago and Tennelle Milligan of Costa Mesa, Calif., posted a six-game total of 2,629 on Monday to grab a commanding lead halfway through the 12-game women's doubles event at Barra Bowling Center.

    2007PAGPageSchaub.jpg Earlier in the day, Rhino Page of Topeka, Kan., and Cassidy Schaub of Polk, Ohio (l-r) - the only two lefthanders in the men's field - bolted into the men's doubles lead with a 2,618 six-game total, good for a 97-pin lead heading into Tuesday's final six games.

    Victories by both duos would continue the trend of American success at the Pan American Games. Since bowling received medal-sport status in 1991, the U.S. has amassed 22 medals, twice more than second-best Mexico with 11.

    Milligan and Asbaty dissected the long oil pattern and hold a sizable lead over surprising second-place Tilcia De Lancini and Yvette Chen of Panama, who have 2,465. Puerto Rico's Michelle Ayala and Yoselin Leon currently are third with 2,446.

    Asbaty led the duo with 1,359 (226.5 average), highlighted by a 247 game and no game lower than 205. After a slow start, Milligan rebounded to shoot 1,270 (211.67 average).

    "I had an incredible reaction," said Asbaty, who used a Brunswick Regular Inferno throughout the day. "It's a really old ball that works a lot of places. I only moved two boards all day. All I really played with was a little loft to kick out the 10 pin at the end of the day."

    Monday marked the end of an eight-year absence from international competition for Milligan, a former professional who won a gold medal at the 1999 Pan American Games.

    "It was a little nerve-racking today," said Milligan, who opened with a 169 in Game 1 but was no lower than 202 the rest of the day. "It feels really good to have 'U-S-A' on my back again. It's not all just for me; it's for the whole United States. We don't want to let anyone down."

    Page shot 1,346 - highlighted by a 269 in Game 2 that vaulted the duo into the lead - for an average of 224.33 per game. Schaub, making his Team USA debut, posted 1,272 (212 average) and helped get the duo going with 244 and 232 in the first two games.

    "We communicated really well and we helped each other on making moves," said Page, a Sand Diego native. "Each pair played different today. Having someone out there was a big bonus for us."

    Mexico's Daniel Falconi and Alejandro Cruz are currently second with 2,521, while Brazil's Rodrigo Hermes and Fabio Rezende are third with 2,512.

    "It's great to have the lead because now you know everybody is trying to catch you," Schaub said. "We can stay aggressive and bowl our game. They have to beat us; we don't have to beat them."

    The 12-game doubles event concludes Tuesday with the final six games. Page and Schaub will bowl at 9 a.m. Eastern, while Milligan and Asbaty compete at 2 p.m.

    2007PAGBarraBowl2.jpg The XV Pan American Games, which run July 13-29, are an Americas version of the Olympic Games which includes the Olympic Program sports and others that are not part of the Olympics. The bowling competition, consisting of singles and doubles events, runs through Thursday at Barra Bowling Center (pictured right), a 20-lane facility located in the Barra Shopping Mall.

    An estimated 5,500 athletes from 42 countries are competing in 28 sports at the XV Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro. Conducted every four years, the first Pan American Games were held in 1951 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    2007PAGPASOPresidentMarioVasquezRana.jpg Pan America Bowling Confederation (PABCON) president Jose Guandique (on the right) from El Salvador has informed us that he had a meeting with Mario Vasquez Raña (left)., president of the Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) to talk about the PABCON - PASO relationship.

    "It was a very important and informative meeting;" Guandique stated. "Our sport is doing well and we have made some progress in regard to a permanently presence of bowling in the Pan Am Games and in regard to our Olympic quest."

    XV Pan American Games

    Barra Bowling in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

    Men's Doubles - Monday's Results (Through 6 of 12 games)

    Women's Doubles - Monday's Results (Through 6 of 12 games)