USBC NEWS: 2013 Open Championships underway in Reno

March 1,2013


CONTACT: Matt Cannizzaro
USBC Communications
On the Web: BOWL.com


RENO, Nev. -
The 2013 United States Bowling Congress Open Championshipskicked off its 125-day run Friday as the first of more than 10,000 teams hitthe lanes at the National Bowling Stadium.

The tournament is making its record 11th visit to The Biggest Little City inthe World and eighth trip to the one-of-a-kind NBS, where more than 400 bowlersand fans helped usher in the 110th edition of the storied event.

The opening-night festivities included a ceremonial ribbon cutting, traditionalMass Ball Shot, exhibition by the cast of "Magique," a show beingheld at the Eldorado Hotel Casino and the crowning of Joe Bowler.

Michael Mariani of Havre, Mont., earned the distinction of being named thisyear's Joe Bowler, a tradition started in 1951. The 61-year-old right-handerrandomly was selected from the opening squad and earned the right to throw outthe ceremonial first ball.

Mariani received some coaching tips from USBC Hall of Famer Bob Hart as heprepared to make his shot, and he then knocked down seven pins to mark theofficial start of the 2013 tournament.

"Getting picked out of all these people, I thought no way," saidMariani, who made his 12th USBC Open Championships appearance. "I knewabout it but never thought it would be me. I didn't want to try and take a fullapproach because the cape hinders you a little, but the best part was justgoing out and doing it."

Following the ceremony, Custom Decks of Northfield, Ohio, wasted no time racingto the top of the leaderboard, taking the early lead in Regular Team with a2,733 total. The team members used a session on the new 900 Global ShowcaseLanes earlier in the day to help solidify the strategy that catapulted theminto the top spot.

Chuck Lewis led the way for Custom Decks with a 602 series and was joined byKyle Oleksy (573), David Oleksy (535), Gene Klonowski (524) and Phil Klonowski(499).

"We practiced for an hour on the Showcase Lanes today, and they seemed tobe a tad drier down there," said Lewis, who made his 19th tournamentappearance. "We talked about it and tried to tighten up each other'sgames. Spare shooting is essential. It was very challenging, but it's nice tobe on top at the end of the first day."

In the Classified Division, Fran-Way Tree Moving of Pella, Iowa, grabbed thelead with a 2,388 effort. Rod Blunck paced the group with a 518 set and wasfollowed by Wayne VanMersbergen (511), Kyle Blunck (488), Jeff Blunck (471) andNathan Blunck (400).

"We actually thought we struggled, but it turns out we must have donefairly well," said Rod Blunck, who made his 20th Open Championshipsappearance. "I told the guys that if we finished first on the squad, wewould be leading. It was a good time. We're pretty pleased with theresults."

Competition at the 2013 Open Championships will continue until July 7. For thefirst time, the Storm Bowlers Journal Championships presented by USBC is beingheld in the same venue and will be held at the high end of the 78-lane venue.

The newly-added 900 Global Showcase Lanes on the ground floor of the buildingwill be available for team practice sessions, coaching sessions withUSBC-certified coach Matt McNiel and two new side tournaments - the 900 GlobalTwo-Game Challenge and Who's Got the Look Baker Bonanza presented by 900Global.

Also a first this year, the USBC Women's Championships will be held in the samehost city at the same time. The 2013 tournament will be contested on 44specially-constructed lanes at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center. The eventwill kick off April 12 and run for 81 consecutive days, concluding July 1.

For more information on the Open and Women's Championships, visit BOWL.com.

Presenting sponsors for the 2013 USBC Open Championships include Circus CircusReno, Eldorado Hotel Casino Reno and Silver Legacy Resort Casino Reno.

United States Bowling Congress
The United States Bowling Congress serves as the national governing body forthe sport. USBC is a membership organization that provides standardized rules,regulations and benefits to make bowling fair and fun for everyone.

The interactive home of USBC is BOWL.com. Go to twitter.com/USBC for thefastest USBC headlines.

National Bowling Stadium, Reno, Nev.

(Top 10 division leaders with hometown and pinfall)


1, Custom Decks (Phil Klonowski, David Oleksy, Gene Klonowski, Kyle Oleksy,Chuck Lewis), Northfield, Ohio, 2,733. 2, Weber State Wildcats, Draper, Utah,2,707. 3, Texa-Tonka Green 2, Pacific Grove, Calif., 2,695. 4, Texa-Tonka Green1, Pacific Grove, Calif., 2,686. 5, K S Delivery 1, Cleveland, 2,658. 6,Mascoutah Community Lanes, Mascoutah, Ill., 2,618. 7, Country Floral,Williston, N.D., 2,572. 8, Bolin Transport, Casey, Ill., 2,556. 9, Wannabees,Brunswick, Ohio, 2,546. 10, Wildcat Lanes 1, Wayne, Neb., 2,535.



1, Fran-Way Tree Moving (Wayne VanMersbergen, Nathan Blunck, Jeff Blunck, KyleBlunck, Rod Blunck), Pella, Iowa, 2,388. 2, Haveanother, Salisbury, Md., 2,380.3, Bill Henry Construction, Havre, Mont., 2,369. 4, Jokers Five, Buford, Ga.,2,354. 5, Curran's Restaurant, Columbia Heights, Minn., 2,337. 6, MascoutahCommunity Lanes, Mascoutah, Ill., 2,315. 7, Toms Bowling Center, Gibbon, Minn.,2,298. 8, Fagan Trucking, Shelton, Neb., 2,284. 9, Brew Crew 1, Cheyenne, Wyo.,2,270. 10, Ervin Dentistry, Pella, Iowa, 2,263.

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