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Junichi Yajima leads in title defense at 2017 Super Senior Classic


Defending champion Junichi Yajima of Japan looked poised to defend his title at the Super Senior Classic, and he leads all competitors through two rounds at the 2017 event.

All 140 bowlers in the sold-out field participated in two six-game blocks Friday at Sam’s Town Bowling Center in Las Vegas, and the field was cut to the top 35 competitors for Saturday’s cashers’ round based on the 12-game pinfall totals.

Yajima (pictured), a 71-year-old right-hander, opened his title defense with a 1,253 six-game block, but he averaged more than 244 in his second round on his way to a 1,466 total and 2,719 overall effort, a 226.58 average for 12 games.

Yajima took the proper steps to become fully acclimated to Las Vegas after his trek across the Pacific Ocean covered more than 5,500 miles.

“I still can’t believe I won last year, but it’s real,” Yajima said. “I decided to arrive in Las Vegas a week early, because I knew it would take some time to adjust after my 12-hour flight. I’ve been preparing physically and mentally to come back as the defending champion, and I’m happy with my performance today.”

The runner-up to Yajima in 2016, Ron Mohr (right) of North Las Vegas, Nevada, sits in second place with a 2,681 total. Robert Reed of Weed, California, is third with 2,673, and Paul McCordic of Sugar Land, Texas, is fourth with 2,649.

McCordic (left) was the runner-up at the 2016 United States Bowling Congress Senior Masters, which also took place at Sam’s Town and will return to the 56-lane center starting Tuesday.

Professional Bowlers Association Tour titlist Darryl Bower of Middletown, Pennsylvania, earned the final spot in the cashers’ round at the 2017 Super Senior Classic with a 2,438 total, a 203.17 average.

Bowlers advancing to Saturday’s cashers’ round will return to the lanes at Sam’s Town starting at noon Eastern. All advancers will bowl six additional games Saturday before the field is cut to 12 for two groups of round-robin match play. Match play will consist of six games, including a position round.

At the end of match play, the top qualifier in each group will earn an automatic spot in Sunday’s stepladder finals, with seeding being determined by total pins. The second, third and fourth qualifiers in each group will advance to a group stepladder final Sunday. The winner of each group stepladder also will advance to the stepladder finals and meet in the opening match.

The winner of the 2017 Super Senior Classic will take home the top prize of $7,000. BOWL.com’s BowlTV will begin providing coverage of the 2017 Super Senior Classic with Saturday’s cashers’ round. For more information on the Super Senior Classic, click here.

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USBC Super Senior Classic – Qualifying Results

Players with position, hometown and 12-game total; top 35 players advance to the cashers’ round.

1, Junichi Yajima, Japan, 2,719. 2, Ron Mohr, North Las Vegas, Nev., 2,681. 3, Robert Reed (a), Weed, Calif., 2,673. 4, Paul McCordic, Sugar Land, Texas, 2,649. 5, John Petraglia, Jackson, N.J., 2,633. 6, William Nichols, Bella Vista, Ark., 2,603.

7, Tom Carter, Columbus, Ohio, 2,601. 8, Kevin Croucher, Grants Pass, Ore., 2,594. 9, Warren Nelson, Hemet, Calif., 2,587. 10, Steven Davis, Manteca, Calif., 2,583. 11, Dick Baker (a), Henderson, Nev., 2,569. 12, Russ Davies, Las Vegas, 2,545.

13, Mike Matosich, Phoenix, 2,530. 14, Donald Blatchford, Santa Monica, Calif., 2,529. 15, Gary Morgan, Marietta, Ga., 2,523. 16, Rich Cook, Olympia, Wash., 2,522. 17, Ted Staikoff, Black Hawk, S.D., 2,520. 18, John Masiello (a), Kenmore, N.Y., 2,502.

19, Mitch Vernon, Olympia, Wash., 2,500. 20, Terry Leong (a), Henderson, Nev., 2,499. 21, Marc Scherlis, San Diego, 2,491. 22, Gary Burke (a), San Diego, 2,490. 23, Kerry Painter, Henderson, Nev., 2,486. 24, Max Shellabarger, Layton, Utah, 2,479.

25, Randy Turner, Shallowater, Texas, 2,459. 26, Jim Heintz, St. Charles, Mo., 2,457. 27, Norbert Wetzel, Fon Du Lac, Wis., 2,455. 28, Thomas Baker, King, N.C., 2,452. 29(tie), John Dudak, Orland Park, Ill., and Koichiro Tamaki, Japan, 2,449.

31(tie), Steve Kiss (a), Clackamas, Ore., and Jim Gordin, Modesto, Calif., and Jeff Jamison, Boulder City, Nev., 2,447. 34, Tim Dunbar (a), Largo, Fla., 2,443. 35, Darryl Bower, Middletown, Pa., 2,438.

Missed Cut:
36, Vaughn Doody (a), Las Vegas, 2,426. 37, Nick Morgan, Sacramento, Calif., 2,424. 38, Sal Bongiorno, Las Vegas, 2,421. 39, Pete Seibel (a), Waxahachie, Texas, 2,414. 40, Darwin Wimer (a), Mesquite, Nev., 2,395. 41, David Axon, Bellevue, Neb., 2,394. 42, Conway Sunell (a), Las Vegas, 2,389.

43, Donald Robinson (a), Houston, 2,386. 44, Eddie Katz, Lakewood, Calif., 2,384. 45(tie), Fred Cole, Visalia, Calif., and Scott Jackson (a), Vista, Calif., 2,383. 47, Paul Appling (a), Camarillo, Calif., 2,382. 48, Ed Silva, Manteca, Calif., 2,378.

49, Dale Traber, Cedarburg, Wis., 2,376. 50, Thomas Ream, Temple Terrace, Fla., 2,375. 51(tie), John Parry, Oak Park, Calif., and Greg McMahan, Dandridge, Tenn., and Eugene Captain (a), Bertha, Minn., 2,374. 54, Kevin Gannon (a), Lakewood, Calif., 2,372.

55, Don Lane, Emeryville, Calif., 2,370. 56, Edward Roberts, Braintree, Mass., 2,364. 57, David Graber (a), Las Vegas, 2,363. 58, Frederick Ferreira, Kings Park, N.Y., 2,357. 59, Dave Washburn (a), Las Vegas, 2,355. 60(tie), Robert Heath, Grand Junction, Iowa, and Willie Willis (a), N. Las Vegas, Nev., 2,352.

62(tie), Philip Davis (a), Union City, Calif., and Michael Lucente, Warren, Mich., and Bill Sell, Menasha, Wis., 2,351. 65, Roger Kossert, Lithia, Fla., 2,346. 66(tie), Lucy Sandelin (a), Tampa, Fla., and Jeff Suma Sr., Auburn Hills, Mich., 2,339.

68, John Bertolina (a), Henderson, Nev., 2,333. 69, Lewis Elting, Carlsbad, Calif., 2,325. 70, Rick Minier, Houston, 2,320. 71, Dave Shaw, Sun Prairie, Wis., 2,315. 72, David Rhoads, Las Vegas, 2,313.

73, John Babbitt (a), Goodyear, Ariz., 2,308. 74, Timothy Myers, Milwaukie, Ore., 2,305. 75, (TIE) James Hutchinson, Ludlow Falls, Ohio, and Willie Wells (a), Plano, Texas, 2,303. 77, Patrick King, Yankton, S.D., 2,300. 78, Brian Miller, Springfield, Ohio, 2,294.

79(tie), Mark Scime, Winter Garden, Fla., and Mike Saraiva, Napa, Calif., 2,293. 81, Jay Gneiting (a), Aberdeen, Idaho, 2,287. 82, Harry Mickelson (a), Yakima, Wash., 2,285. 83, Jim Scoppe, Las Vegas, 2,280. 84, Chip Holliday, Waller, Texas, 2,277.

85, William Keenan Jr., Orlando, Fla., 2,275. 86, Andrew Bizub Jr. (a), Huber Heights, Ohio, 2,273. 87, Bruce Lamb (a), Sun City, Ariz., 2,267. 88(tie), Michael Chrzanowski, Shepherd, Mich., and Steve Jansson, Barnes, Wis., 2,264. 90, Dennis Lane, Kingsport, Tenn., 2,260.

91(tie), Joe Vito (a), San Antonio, and Rico Pura (a), South Lake Tahoe, Calif., 2,259. 93, Roy Yamanuha (a), Ewa Beach, Hawaii, 2,255. 94, Kerry Fulford, Fort Worth, Texas, 2,253. 95, Joe McBride, Thousand Oaks, Calif., 2,252. 96, Ronald Holt (a), Upper Marlboro, Md., 2,251.

97, Daniel Lockman (a), Poynette, Wis., 2,250. 98, Jerry Calvin, Thousand Oaks, Calif., 2,248. 99, Tim Pierce, Portland, Ore., 2,247. 100(tie), James Moran (a), Henderson, Nev., and Dowell Milliken, Lake Grove, N.Y., 2,238. 102, Ray Cobb, Highland, Calif., 2,236.

103, Jay Samelak (a), Bowling Green, Ohio, 2,033. 104, Chris Patton (a), Park City, Utah, 2,227. 105, Roger Painter II (a), Woodbridge, Va., 2,222. 106, Paul Mielens, Menomonie, Wis., 2,209. 107, Frank DeFilippo (a), Las Vegas, 2,204. 108, Ray Howard, Paradise, Calif., 2,203.

109(tie), Dennis Jones (a), Fremont, Calif., and Robert Amoruso, Glenview, Ill., 2,198. 111, Raymond St. Sauveur, Port Charlotte, Fla., 2,197. 112, David Putzer (a), Oshkosh, Wis., 2,195. 113, Takashi Yamaguchi (a), Japan, 2,191. 114, Jim Jakus (a), Las Vegas, 2,188.

115, Carl Nichols, Blaine, Wash., 2,182. 116, John Younger, Winston Salem, N.C., 2,181. 117, Mark Fennell, Bonney Lake, Wash., 2,179. 118, George Lord, Mulberry, Fla., 2,166. 119, Wayne Clark (a), Locke, N.Y., 2,165. 120, Malcolm Helmuth, Elk Grove, Calif., 2,138.

121, Howard Partell (a), Las Vegas, 2,131. 122, Alden Anderson, Falls Church, Va., 2,127. 123, Robert Scott (a), Las Vegas, 2,126. 124, Dave Erickson (a), McFarland, Wis., 2,124. 125, Stan Winters, Simi Valley, Calif., 2,118. 126, Roland Wright Jr., Pulaski, Va., 2,117.

127(tie), Bill Hewlett, Las Vegas, and George Gibson, Stuart, Fla., 2,108. 129, Gabriel Luchetta (a), Golden, Colo., 2,106. 130, Richard Hubitsky (a), Centreville, Md., 2,096. 131, Dennis Galen Keas, Alda, Neb., 2,083. 132, Paul Pender (a), Yukon, Okla., 2,062.

133, David Nebe (a), N. Chesterfield, Va., 2,023. 134, Gregory Popham, Crestview Hills, Ky., 1,997. 135, Glen Nakagawa, Highland Village, Texas, 1,992. 136, Fred Edick, Glendora, Calif., 1,968.

Herbert Bickel

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