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Unique format in place as FloBowling makes its debut


When Ryan Ciminelli of Clarence, N.Y., returns to Parkside Lanes Saturday to defend the Professional Bowlers Association’s Xtra Frame Parkside Lanes Open title he won in 2016, he and the rest of the all-star field will find a few changes are in place, including the debut of PBA Xtra Frame on FloBowling.com, and a new format that will bring a new dimension to the qualifying portion of the event.

Organized by PBA Tour champion Sean Rash (right), an Aurora area resident, the Parkside Lanes Open will present unique challenges to a world-class field of proven PBA champions as well as a talented field of challengers who are seeking their first PBA title, and it’ll be an event that is part festival as well as part tournament.

With FloBowling’s PBA Xtra Frame cameras and announcers following the action from start to finish, the event will feature a new dimension to the qualifying rounds Saturday and Sunday, as well as Monday’s semifinal round.

For starters each of those rounds will be contested on a different lane condition. Ciminelli (featured photo and left) conquered the lane condition challenge on two different patterns when he won in 2016, but this year players will have to demonstrate their skills on three widely different oil patterns: PBA Chameleon 39 on Saturday, Don Carter 39 on Sunday and PBA Bear 39 on Monday (designations refer to 39-foot applications of oil).

New this year also is a “bonus pin” scoring system during qualifying that will put added emphasis on performing well every game. The new system will work like this: with four players on each pair of lanes, the player who bowls the highest score each game will earn an additional 30 bonus pins. The second highest player will earn 20 bonus pins, and the third-high player will get an extra 10 pins. The lowest scoring player on the pair won’t get any bonus pins. In case of ties, bonus pins will be divided.

Qualifying in PBA competition normally involves actual pin count only, but the new wrinkle is something Rash introduced based on his years of experience in PBA competition.

“It’s a combination of events we’ve played in the past,” Rash said, “but it’s the first time is PBA history this has been used in PBA Tour competition. It’s something I wanted to try so we’ll see how it goes.

“The whole objective to is make every shot matter,” he added. “Too often in qualifying, players get a little complacent so now the guys are going to have to pay attention, myself included. The bonus pins can make a huge difference.”

Therefore, Ciminelli will try to overcome the lane condition challenges as well as take advantage of the new bonus pin system as he tries to repeat against a world-class field of bowling talent that features several 2018 PBA titlists including DHC PBA Japan Invitational winner Dom Barrett of England; PBA Tournament of Champions winner Matt O’Grady (right) of Rahway, N.J.; PBA Xtra Frame Greater Jonesboro Open and USBC Masters champ Andrew Anderson of Holly, Mich.; Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles co-winner Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa., and PBA Xtra Frame Wilmington Open winner Cristian Azcona of Puerto Rico.

Other PBA Tour title holders entered include Ciminelli, Canada’s Graham Fach, Yorkville’s Steve Jaros, Tommy Jones, Marshall Kent, Rhino Page (left), Anthony Pepe, Rash, Ronnie Russell, Matt Sanders, Ryan Shafer, Anthony Simonsen, Tom Smallwood, Jason Sterner, EJ Tackett, England’s Richie Teece, Kyle Troup and Cameron Weier.

The Illinois delegation of competitors will be highlighted by PBA Hall of Famer Carmen Salvino (right) of Chicago, who earlier this year set a PBA record as the oldest player ever to bowl in the PBA Tour event when he competed in the Go Bowling! PBA 60th Anniversary Classic in Indianapolis at the age of 84 (he turns 85 in November).^

The Parkside Lanes Open, like all eight PBA Xtra Frame Tour events in 2018, is part of the Go Bowling! PBA Tour. All Xtra Frame events will be covered live, from first ball to last, by PBA’s live streaming partner, FloBowling.

PBA created the online Xtra Frame Tour in 2014 to supplement its nationally-televised events. The growing popularity of live streaming events enables more fans around the world to watch the world’s greatest bowlers compete for a PBA Tour title.

Competition begins on Saturday, June 30 with an eight-game qualifying round at 10 a.m. with a second eight-game qualifying round Sunday at 10 a.m. After 16 games, the top 25 percent of the field will advance to an eight-game semifinal round Monday at 10 a.m.

Based on 24 games with “bonus pins,” the five will advance to the stepladder finals at 3 p.m., where the top qualifier will decide which lane condition is used for the finals. At stake is a projected $10,000 first prize and a PBA Tour title.

A practice session is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Friday followed by a pro-am where grassroots amateur bowlers can bowl with the pros will be conducted at 6 p.m. Following Saturday’s qualifying round, Parkside will host a BBQ party beginning at 3 p.m.

Sunday, Rash and the tournament organizers will host a free youth clinic at 3 p.m. (more than 100 youth bowlers have already signed up). For tournament pro-am, BBQ and youth clinic information contact Parkside Lanes at (630) 898-5678.

For Xtra Frame subscriptions, visit xtraframe.tv by no later than Friday to enroll at the current subscription rates (three days for $3.99, 30 days for $7.99 or for a full year for $64.99. As of Saturday, FloBowling PRO subscription rates will be in effect ($30 per month, $150 per year) through FloBowling.com. FloBowling PRO subscriptions include access to all of FloSports’ diverse channels.

For a complete tournament roster, click here.

PBA Xtra Frame Parkside Open

Parkside Lanes in Aurora, Ill., USA (June 29-July 2, 2018)

(All times Central)

Friday, June 29, 2018
8 a.m. – Golf outing
3:30 p.m. – Practice Session
5:30 p.m. – New player orientation meeting
6 p.m. – Pro-am

Saturday, June 30, 2018
10 a.m. – Eight qualifying games
3 p.m. – BBQ party

Sunday, July 1, 2018
10 a.m. – Eight qualifying games
Top 25 percent of field after 16 games advance
3 p.m. – Youth clinic

Monday, July 2, 2018
10 a.m. – Semifinal Round, eight games
Top five after 24 games advance to stepladder finals
3 p.m. – Top five, stepladder finals
6 p.m. – Champion’s dinner

Herbert Bickel

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