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24th Malta Open Championships
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Tackett beat O’Neill, who was also trying for his 10th win, 210-171, in the title match to also record his first win of the season.
Featured photo from left: Tournament organizer Sean Rash and champion EJ Tackett.
“To make it to double digits is one of those milestones you always hope to accomplish.” Tackett (right) said of the 10-win milestone. “It’s like winning your second title because it’s another validation in your career that you can compete against the best in the world.
“There’s no such thing as an easy win but this tournament felt easier than most for some reason,” the 2016 PBA Player of the Year added.
Tackett, using a urethane ball on the PBA Chameleon 39-foot lane condition, which he chose for the title match, was able to hit the pocket consistently and never threw anything less than a nine-count until the 10th frame when the match had already been decided.
In each stepladder match the higher qualifier was able to select the lane condition for the match.
“Bowling on the Chameleon condition was the easiest for me to break down with a urethane ball,” Tackett said. “I just felt that I could avoid bowling 180 and it was my best chance to keep the ball in play. If I could bowl over 200 I felt my chances of winning the match were pretty good. I did exactly what I wanted to do.”
In the opening stepladder match, six-time Tour winner Dom Barrett (right) of England defeated four-time titlist Marshall Kent (left) of Yakima Wash., 235-226, to advance to the second match against O’Neill who qualified third for the finals.
Intended to put added emphasis on performing well every game, the unique qualifying portion of the tournament awarded bonus pins to players for each game depending on how they finished against their competitors on each pair of lanes.
As an example, with four players on a pair of lanes, the top scorer would earn 30 bonus pins, the second high scorer 20 pins and third 10 pins with the lowest scoring player receiving no bonus.
The tournament was also conducted on three different PBA lane conditions with the first round conducted on the Chameleon followed by the second round on the 39-foot Don Carter and the third round conducted on the 39-foot Bear condition.
All PBA Xtra Frame events for the rest of the season will be covered live, from first ball to last, by PBA’s new live streaming partner, FloBowling. Subscriptions are available at FloBowling.com (existing Xtra Frame subscribers can transition their current subscriptions by visiting FloBowling.
The next event on the PBA Xtra Frame on FloBowling.com and Go Bowling! PBA Tour schedule for 2018 is the PBA/PWBA Storm Striking for Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles Tournament that will take place with a sold-out field of 160 teams July 26-29 at Copperfield Bowl in Houston, Texas. Jason Sterner of Rockledge, Fla., and Birgit Pöppler of Germany are defending champions.
Newcomer Matt Kuba takes PBA XF Parkside Lanes Open lead after second round
EJ Tackett leads PBA XF Parkside Lanes Open after first round
Unique format in place as FloBowling makes its debut with PBA XF Parkside Open
2018 PBA Tour Schedule & Champions
Parkside Lanes in Aurora, Ill., USA (June 29-July 2, 2018)
1, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 210 (1 game), $10,000
2, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 625 (3 games), $6,300
3, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 198 (1 game), $4,000
4, Dom Barrett, England, 451 (2 games), $3,000
5, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 226 (1 game), $2,000
First Match: No. 4 Barrett def. No. 5 Kent, 235-226
Second Match: No. 3 O’Neill def. Barrett, 245-216
Semifinal Match: O’Neill def. No. 2 Via, 209-198
Championship: No. 1 Tackett def. O’Neill, 210-171.
Players with position, hometown, 24-game total, including bonus pins and average; top 5 players advance to the stepladder finals; n-denotes non-PBA member.
1, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 5979, 229.13
2, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 5919, 226.21
3, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 5864, 225.58
4, Dom Barrett, England, 5840, 224.79
5, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 5830, 223.96
6, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 5800, 223.75
7, Andrew Anderson, Holly, Mich., 5770, 221.46
8, Matt Kuba, Chicago Ridge, Ill., 5765, 221.04
9, AJ Johnson, Oswego, Ill., 5764, 220.17
10, Jason Sterner, Rockledge, Fla., 5757, 221.54
11, Greg Ostrander, Freehold, N.J., 5716, 218.79
12, Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas, 5695, 219.38
13, Kyle Sherman, O’Fallon, Mo., 5647, 218.00
14, Kurt Pilon, Warren, Mich., 5642, 217.38
15, Kamron Doyle, Brentwood, Tenn., 5620, 218.75
16, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 5527, 214.25
17, Kristopher Prather, Plainfield, Ill., 5523, 213.25
18, Steve Jaros, Yorkville, Ill., 5428, 209.08
19, Mitch Hupe, Canada, 5421, 209.21
19, Anthony Pepe, Elmhurst, N.Y., 5421, 209.63
21, JR Raymond, Clinton Twp. Mich., 5399, 208.92
22, Nathan Michalowski, Burlington, Wis., 5382, 208.00
23, Nick Kruml, Downers Grove, Ill., 5381, 208.38
24, Jason Miller, Plano, Ill., 5355, 207.92
25, Graham Fach, Canada, 5244, 202.46
26, n-Mike Dole, Loves Park, Ill., 5202, 202.17
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