Kelly Kulick pulls away after first block of match play at U.S. Women's Open


    2011 U.S. Women's Open

    Hulsenberg, O'Keefe bring number of 300 games to 14



    2011USWOKellyKulick.jpg2011USWOLizJohnson.jpgDefending champion Kelly Kulick (pictured left) of Union, N.J., averaged 231.88 in the first eight games of match play in the U.S. Women's Open, sponsored by the Brands of Ebonite International, to widen her lead to 247 pins Tuesday night at AMF Showplace Lanes in Euless, Texas.

    Kulick, who was honored 2010 Bowler of the Year by the Bowling Writers Association of America (BWAA) that evening, had games of 217, 185, 269, 218, 249, 257, 228 and 232 winning six of her eight matches worth 180 bonus pins to lead the field with 9812 total. The PBA exempt player averaged 240.80 for 40 games.

    2011USWOShannonOKeefe.jpg2011USWOTennelleMilligan.jpgLiz Johnson (right) of Cheektowaga, N.Y. averaged 236.13 and had a 4-4 win-loss record to leap one spot into second place with 9565. Former PWBA star Leanne Hulsenberg (Barrette) led all sixteen players with an average of 238.63 including a 300 game and compiled a 6-2 match play record to jump from seventh to third place with 9551.

    Lynda Barnes leaped from fifth to fourth place with 9487 including a 297 game and a 5-3 win-loss record. Rachel Perez jumped from 10th to fifth place with 9440 including the field-best 7-1 match play record.

    Shannon O'Keefe (left) of Arlington, Texas, rolled the 14th 300 game of the U.S. Open in the seventh game of match play (39th overall) but slipped all the way out of the top 5 to sixth place with 9403.

    2011USWOLisanneBreeschoten3.jpg2011USWOHelenJohnsson.jpgShannon Pluhowsky of Kettering, Ohio, who was never lower than second in the first four rounds, fell to seventh place with 9335 after averaging 210.13 for the round losing all but one game. Tennelle Milligan (above right) moved up three places to eighth with 9260.

    Lisanne Breeschoten (left) of the Netherlands maintained ninth place with 9257 after going 4-4 in match play including an average of 220.88. Rounding out the top 10 was Jodi Woessner, who fell five places with 9226 behind a 1-7 match play record.

    The other two international players, Helen Johnsson (right) of Sweden and Mai Ginge Jensen are 301 and 405 pins off the pace for fifth place in 14th and 16th place with 9139 and 9035, respectively.

    2011USWOLogo.jpg The 16 players will return Wednesday morning at 10 a.m. for the last seven games of match play plus one game position round.

    The top five after 48 games including bonus pins will advance to the stepladder final on June 30 to be staged midfield of the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, home of the NFL's Dallas Cowboys and host of Super Bowl XLV.

    The show will be broadcast on ESPN2's "Best and the Brightest," Saturday, July 2 at 6 p.m. ET.

    The 2ß11 U.S. Women's Open offers total prize fund of $225.000. The tournament winner will receive a $50,000 purse plus 2 round trip tickets on American Airlines anywhere in the 48 continental states, a $5,000 Gift Certificate to Tiffany & Co. and a custom High 5 Gear Jersey.

    The runner-up gets $25,000, third place is worth $15,000, the fourth-place finisher takes $12,500 while the fifth-place finisher garners $10,000. If a competitor in the championship match rolls a 300, she will win $1 million.

    BowlingdigitalBanner.gif Bowlingdigital will cover the Open live from Texas commencing on Sunday, June 26 all the way through to the arena finals on Thursday evening. will have live streaming of all rounds leading up to the ESPN2 televised finals.



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    Round Robin Match Play (fifth round overall) - Standings after 40 games


    300 Games (14) - Lisanne Breeschoten, Netherlands; Sara Vargas, Colombia; Josie Earnest, Nashville, Tenn.; Diandra Asbaty, Chicago; Patricia de Faria, Venezuela; Michelle Feldman, Auburn, N.Y.; Jodi Woessner, Oregon, Ohio; Jan Schmidt, Hales Corners, Wis.; Brittani Scruggs-Barber, Pikeville, Ky.; Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, Keller, Texas; Jovan Blankenfeld, Schertz, Texas; Mai Ginge Jensen, Denmark, Leanne Hulsenberg of Roseville, Calif., Shannon O'Keefe, Arlington, Texas.