IBMA Bowlers of the Month
LARSEN CLAIMS MARCH BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas – Thomas Larsen, Denmark, has been chosen as the March 2014 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Larsen defeated Dom Barrett, England, 208-205, to win the World Bowling Tour 11th Kuwait International Open. This marks Larsen's second WBT/PBA title. The stepladder finals began with Stuart Williams, England, defeating two of the PBA's biggest stars. Sean Rash, Montgomery, Illinois, was the first to be dispatched, 256-200. Reigning PBA Player of the Year, Jason Belmonte, Australia, fell in the quarterfinal, 178-148. Barrett then downed Williams in the semifinal, 243-202, setting up the final match. Tournament rules stated the top-seeded Larsen had to be defeated twice for Barrett claim the title. The Danish bowler qualified fifth, averaging over 235, then dropped to 11th in match play before rebounding to the top seed in the stepladder finals. Larsen won his first WBT/PBA title, the WBT 1st Abu Dhabi Open in December 2013. His other top finishes were in the 2012 PBA World Series of Bowling, a 16th place finish in the Bowlers Journal PBA Scorpion Championship and a 24th place finish in the PBA World Championship.
Others obtaining votes this month were Marshall Kent, winner,WBT/EBT 11th Brunswick Euro Challenge; Shannon O'Keefe, winner, women's stepladder final, 11th Kuwait International Open; Mai Ginge Jensen and Pasi Uotila, winners of women's and men's divisions of the 7th European Bowling Tour Masters.
BELMO HISTORIC IN REPEAT AS FEBRUARY BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Jason Belmonte, Orange, New South Wales, Australia, has been unanimously chosen as the February 2014 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Belmonte defeated E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Indiana, 221-177, for the USBC Masters title, for his ninth career and third major PBA title. He is only the third bowler to repeat as Masters champion; the first almost nearly a half-century. After leading qualifying, the Australian two-hander narrowly escaped the Contenders Bracket in the double-elimination match play, qualifying fifth for the five-man stepladder television finals. Starting from the number five position, he defeated Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, New York, 227-214, then Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Michigan, 202-173. In the closest match of the day, Belmonte defeated Michael Haugen, Jr., Phoenix, in the semifinal, 235-234, setting up the championship match against Tackett. Belmonte joins USBC Hall of Famers Dick Hoover and Billy Welu as the only back-to-back winners of the USBC Masters. Hoover won in 1956 and 1957, Welu in 1964 and1965.
Others obtaining votes this month were Chris Barnes, winner ofthe H.H. Emir Cup; E. J. Tackett, runner up in the USBC Masters; and Kamilla Kjeldsen, winner of the European Bowling Tour 8th International Wroclaw Open.
BELMONTE NAMED JANUARY BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Jason Belmonte, Orange, New South Wales, Australia, has been chosen as the January 2014 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Belmonte defeated Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 219-218 in the championship match, to win the PBA Barbasol Tournament of Champions for his eighth career and second major PBA title. The television stepladder finals started with Dan MacLelland, Saginaw, Michigan,defeating defending champion Pete Weber, St. Ann, Missouri, 259-211. Malott ousted MacLelland in the semifinal 243-199. The Texan then defeated Dom Barrett, Colchester, England, in the quarterfinal, 205-202, to set up the title match with the top-seeded Belmonte. The two-handed Australian star began the week being named as 2012-13 PBA Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year. He becomes one of a handful of bowlers to hold two major crowns at the same time. Belmonte won the USBC Masters in February 2013. Belmonte continues a winning streak of the IBMA Kegel Bowler of the Month honor by capturing the monthly award in each of the last four years. Previous wins in the streak have been November and December 2011, October 2012, and February 2013.
Others obtaining votes this month were Mika Koivuniemi, winner of the World Bowling Tour/European Bowling Tour 44th Brunswick Ballmaster Open; Brittni Hamilton and Chris Barnes, the women's and men's winners of the 2014 Team USA Trials.
BARRETT REPEATS AS DECEMBER BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Dom Barrett, Colchester, Essex, England, has been chosen as the December 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Barrett captured the 13th Qatar Bowling Open by defeating Mattias Olsson, Sweden,515-467, in a two-game total pins match. This is Barrett's eighth European Bowling Tour (EBT) and third Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) title. The championship round began with two semifinal matches. Top-seeded Barrett downed fourth-seeded Thomas Larsen, Denmark, 459-438, while third-seeded Olsson ousted second-seeded Cameron Weier, United States, 413-392. Qualifying in 23rd position, Barrett averaged 224 to ascend to eighth place, then averaged 236 in the final six-game block to claim the top seed for the championship round.
Barrett becomes the first bowler in two years to be named IBMA Kegel Bowler of the Month in consecutive months. Jason Belmonte in November and December 2011 and Kelly Kulick in April and May 2010 were the last two to claim back-to-back honors. The British bowler continued his hot streak from November, when he captured his first major, the PBA World Championship. Others obtaining votes this month were Thomas Larsen, winner of the 1st Abu Dhabi World Bowling Tour (WBT)/PBA Tournament; Tommy Jones, winner of the WBT/PBA 7th Kingdom International Open; and Joline Persson-Plainfors, winner of the Sofia International Open.
BARRETT DOMINATES AS NOVEMBER BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON, Texas - Dom Barrett, Colchester, Essex, England, has been chosen as the November 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Associations. Barrett captured the PBA World Championship, the major title included in the PBA World Series of Bowling V, defeating Sean Rash, Montgomery, Illinois, 238-235. It is his second PBA title, after winning the PBA Viper Championship at last year's PBA World Series of Bowling. The stepladder finals began with Pete Weber, St. Ann, Missouri, defeating Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Michigan, 258-237. Weber downed Michael Fagan in the quarterfinal match, 258-246. Rash ousted Weber, 279-249, in the semifinal,setting up the title match with Barrett. Barrett's finishes in this year's PBA WSOB V were seventeenth in the Cheetah Championship, thirteenth in Viper Championship presented by PBA Bowling Challenge, runner up in the Chameleon Championship, and winning the World Championship.
Others obtaining votes this month were Caroline LaGrange, Canada,and Or Aviram, Israel, women's and men's champions at the 49th QubicaAMF World Cup; Yuya Katoh, Japan, winner of the PBA Round One's International Japan Cup;and Ryan Ciminelli, winner of the PBA Chameleon Championship, runner up of the PBA Viper Championship presented by PBA Bowling Challenge.
MIKA FINN-ISHES AS OCTOBER BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Mika Koivuniemi, Hartland, Michigan, has been chosen as the October 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. The Finnish native capped off the month by capturing the World Bowling Tour 11th Columbia 300 Open in Vienna, Austria, by defeating fellow Finn Pasi Uotila,258-237. It is Koivuniemi's third PBA title this year and twelfth career crown. Any WBT wins by PBA touring players count as PBA titles. The four-man stepladder finals began with third-seeded Uotila besting Michael Fagan, United States, 242-207. Second seed Don Barrett, England, was the next to fall, 272-187, setting up the title match with the top-seeded Koivuniemi. In the final WBT tournament before the PBA World Series of Bowling, Koivuniemi bowled for another title,the WBT Thailand Open, dropping a two-game 235-225 and 245-228 decision to Sean Rash. Koivuniemi's first and second place finishes locked up the second-seed in the upcoming WBT Finals presented by the PBA. The top three off the points list based on the last two years advance to a stepladder finals. Sean Rash is the top seed, while Michael Fagan will be the third seed.
Others obtaining votes this month were Sean Rash, winner of the WBT Thailand Open; Lucy Sandelin, winner of the USBC Senior Queens, James Gruffman, winner of the European Bowling Tour Norwegian Open by Brunswick; and Paul Moor, winner of the EBT Brunswick Etna Open.
ZAVJALOVA REIGNS AS SEPTEMBER IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON, Texas - Diana Zavjalova, Latvia,has been named the September 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Zavjalova became the first European woman to win the 2013 United States Bowling Congress (USBC) Queens Tournament defeating former USBC Queens champion Leanne Hulsenberg, North Ogden, Utah, 190-160. In her first time bowling the tournament, Zavjalova went undefeated in double-elimination match play, defeating Shayna Ng, Singapore, to earn the top seed for the television finals. Hulsenberg, Jennifer Higgins, Westerville, Ohio, and USBC Hall of Famer and two-time Queen's Champion Lynda Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, earned the third, fourth, and fifth seeds in a shootout round featuring the remaining four bowlers in the elimination bracket. Higgins downed Barnes in the television finals opening match, 205-173. Next, Hulsenberg beat Higgins, 235-184. In the semifinal, Hulsenberg ousted Ng, 249-172, to advance to the title match. Zavjalova is the fourth international USBC Queens winner joining Carol Gianotti, Australia, in 1989, Kazue Inahashi,Japan, in 1984 and Katsuko Sugimoto, also from Japan, in 1981 and 1982.
Others receiving votes were Craig Nidiffer,winner, IGrind Detroit Shootout; Parker Bohn III, winner, European Bowling Tour (EBT) BNC Open; and Dominic Barrett, winner, EBT Chandra Open.
PAINTER NAMED AUGUST IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Kerry Painter, Henderson, Nevada, has been named the August 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. The first of Painter's two wins was the PBA50 Senior and Super Senior Doubles Classic presented by Brunswick, with senior partner Tom Adcock, defeating PBA Hall of Famers John Petraglia and Wayne Webb, 267-187. The Adcock/Painter team qualified for the stepladder final as the second seed, defeating the fourth-seeded team of Emilia Mora Jr. and Pete Weber, 220-194, to set up the championship match. He followed by winning the inaugural High Roller Super Senior Masters defeating Gary Dickinson, Edmond, Oklahoma and Curtis Dornath, Maricopa, Arizona, in a two-game total pins match, 462-438-392. After qualifying third in his division, Painter moved up to second after the semifinal round. He won his first two matches in double elimination match play before dropping a 442-403 decision to Sam Carter, Ben Lomond, California. He then won four losers bracket matches to get to the title match.
Others receiving votes were Chris Barnes, Team USA, gold medalist, men's All-Events; Shannon O'Keefe, Team USA, gold medalist, women's All-Events and women's doubles; Son Yun-Hee, Team South Korea, gold medalist, women's trios, women's team, women's Masters, all at the World Tenpin Bowling Association (WTBA) World Championships; and Walter Ray Williams, Jr.,winner, PBA50 South Shore Open presented by DV8.
JOHNSON HISTORIC AS JULY IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Liz Johnson of Cheektowaga, New York, has been named the July 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Johnson defeated Kelly Kulick, Union, New Jersey,for the women's crown of the 2013 Lipton Bowling's U.S. Open, 257-195, and her third career U.S. Open victory. The 1996 and 2007 U. S. Open titlist started the title match with the first six strikes,building a 40-pin lead she never relinquished. The four-woman television stepladder finals started with fourth-seeded Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, New York, downing third-seed Diandra Asbaty,Chicago, 192-171. The second-seeded Johnson defeated McEwan, 227-202, settingup the title match with Kulick. Johnson joins Kulick with three Women's U.S. Open titles. The late USBC Hall of Famer Marion Ladewig leads the list with eight. In a first-ever Bowling Battle of the Sexesfollowing the championship matches, Johnson defeated men’s winner Wes Malott in a one game roll off, 194-188. This year's Lipton Bowling's U.S. Open was held in Columbus, Ohio, July 21-27, and featured qualifying three different centers for both men's and women's divisions: Wayne Webb’s Columbus Bowl, Columbus Western Bowl and Holiday Lanes. The finals were broadcast live on ESPN.
Inclose voting this month, others receiving votes were Wes Malott, Pflugerville,Texas, men's winner of Lipton Bowling's U.S. Open, Paula Vidad; winner of the Senior Women's U.S. Open presented by Storm; and Wesley Low, boys under-20 division gold medalist at the USBC North Pointe Junior Gold Championships.
WEBER MASTERS JUNE IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON, Texas - Pete Weber, of St. Ann, Missouri, has been named the June 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Weber defeated Lennie Boresch, Jr., Kenosha, Wisconsin,229-205, capturing the 2013 USBC Senior Masters. In his PBA and USBC Hall of Fame career, a USBC Masters title had eluded Weber, finishing as runner-up in the 1982 ABC Masters. The five-man stepladder finals started with number 4 seed Wayne Webb, Grove City, Ohio, defeating number 5 seed David Axon, Bellevue, Nebraska, 212-193. Number 3 seed Weber downed Webb 247-229. Weber outlasted Kerry Painter, Henderson, Nevada, 204-182, before advancing to the championship against the top-seeded Boresch, Jr. Weber continued his outstanding bowling with victories in the PBA Tournament of Champions, the inaugural PBA League title, and a third place finish in the Lucas Oil PBA Milwaukee Open. He was also named the April IBMA Kegel Bowler of the Month.
In very close voting this month, others receiving votes wereChris Barnes, winner of the Lucas Oil PBA Milwaukee Open; Amelto Monacelli,winner at the Suncoast PBA U.S. Open, presented by Storm; Paul Moor, winner in the European Bowling Tour 1st Brunswick Madrid Challenge, and Jason Belmonte, winner, Lucas Oil PBA Bear Open.
BORESCH JR. DOMINATES AS MAY IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON, Texas - Lennie Boresch Jr. of Kenosha, Wisconsin, has been chosen as the May 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association.
Boresch capped an outstanding month on the PBA50 Tour by capturing the Miller High Life Classic presented by Columbia 300 closely edging Mike Henry, Brunswick, Ohio, 211-210. Qualifying fourth, Boresch went undefeated in match play starting with a Round of 16 win over Tim Kauble, Marion Ohio, 3-0 Next was a Round of 8 victory over Henry Gonzalez, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 2-0, followed by a Round of 4 defeat of Hugh Miller, Seattle, 205-191. His other May tournament finishes included a seventh place posting in the PBA50 Greater Birmingham Open, presented by Ebonite, and a fifth-place finish in the PBA50 Dayton Classic presented by RotoGrip, narrowly missing the four-man stepladder final. This win is the 2012 USBC Hall of Famer's second win on the PBA50 Tour. The other being the 2012 Senior Sun Bowl In the Villages, his very first PBA50 tournament.
Others obtaining votes this month were Randy Pedersen, winner of the PBA50 Dayton Classic presented by RotoGrip; and Tom Baker, winner of the PBA 50 Greater Birmingham Open, presented by Ebonite.
WILLIAMS JR. SHINES AS IBMA APRIL BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON, Texas - Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Ocala, Florida, has been chosen as the April 2013 Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Williams Jr. defeated fellow PBA Hall of Famer Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 276-216, for the title of the PBA50 Sun Bowl in The Villages, presented by Hammer. It is the fifth PBA50 crown for the reigning PBA50 Player of the Year. The four-man stepladder final began with Bo Goergen, Sanford, Michigan, defeating PBA50 rookie Pete Weber, St. Ann,Missouri, 259-256. Williams Jr. then ousted Goergen, 258-191, setting up the title match with Monacelli. After finishing qualifying in third place, Williams Jr. finished the match play rounds with a 9-7 record, good for second place in the championship stepladder round. Besides the tournament's top three seeds being members of the PBA Hall of Fame, Williams Jr., Monacelli, and Weber hold a staggering 103 titles, nineteen major titles, and six PBA50 titles in PBA competition.
In very close voting this month, others receiving votes were Joe Scarborough, who authored the first 900 series in PBA history in the qualifying round of this event; Bob Learn, Jr., winner of the PBA50 Pasco County Suncoast Open Benefiting Wounded Warriors; Bill O'Neill, winner of the Storm Insidebowling.com Open; and Joline Persson-Planefors, Sweden, winner of the European Bowling Tour QubicaAMF German Open.
WEBER MARCHES ON AS MARCH IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON, Texas - Pete Weber, St. Ann, Missouri, has been chosen as the March 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Weber defeated Jason Belmonte, Orange, New South Wales,Australia, for the 2013 Barbasol Professional Bowlers Association (PBA)Tournament of Champions (TOC), 224-179. This title marks Weber's tenth Professional Bowlers Association major championship, tying Earl Anthony atop the all-time list. It Completes Weber's second Triple Crown with two PBA Tournament of Championships Victories, a record five U.S. Open triumphs, and three PBA World Championship Wins. At age 50, he is now the oldest to win the TOC as well as having the longest span, 26 years, between his first and second TOC titles. The television stepladder finals began with the number four-seed Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, South Carolina, downing number five-seed Osku Palermaa, Finland, 217-189. Third seed and defending champion Sean Rash ousted Jones, 247-233. The number two-seeded Belmonte defeated Rash, 229-171 in the semifinal, setting up the title match. A week later, and again on national TV, Weber threw the clinching strike as team anchor for his New York City WTT KingPins team, winning the inaugural PBA League finals and the Elias Cup, 440-407, over the Motown Muscle.
Others receiving votes in March were Sean Rash, winner,PBA/World Bowling Tour 10th Kuwait International Open; Ronnie Russell, winner,WBT/European Bowling Tour/PBA 10th Brunswick Euro Challenge; and Mika Koivuniemi, winner, 11th Kingdom of Bahrain International Open.
BELMONTE MASTERS FEBRUARY IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Jason Belmonte, Orange, New South Wales, Australia, has been unanimously named February 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association. Belmonte captured the USBC Masters, his first major PBA title, by defeating Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 258-245. The Australian two-hander ended the game with six consecutive strikes, forcing Malott to throw three strikes in the tenth frame for the win. Malott got the first strike, but left the 3-6-10 on the second ball,giving Belmonte his sixth PBA crown. The USBC Masters five-man stepladder television finals began with Parker Bohn III,Jackson, N.J., downing Mika Koivuniemi, Finland, 278-246. Malott narrowly beat Bohn III, 255-248, then defeated Stuart Williams, England, 202-185, in the semifinal. Belmonte qualified in 22nd place and won six matches in the winner's bracket to claim the top-seed position in the stepladder finals. He became only the second foreign-born player to win the USBC Masters behind Koivuniemi in 2000.
Others receiving votes were Thomas Larsen, winner of the European Bowling Tour Hammer Bronzen Schietspoel Tournament, Anže Grabrijan, winner,European Bowling Tour 7th International Wroclaw Open presented by Hammer, and Nick Heilman, winner, Fusion Realtors Open.
JONES STARTS 2013 AS JANUARY IBMA BOWLER OF THE MONTH
ARLINGTON,Texas - Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, South Carolina, has been named the January 2013 Kegel Bowler of the Month by the International Bowling Media Association.
Jones defended his men's title at the International Bowling Championships supported by DHC in Inazawa, Japan, by beating Sean Rash, Montgomery, Illinois, 209-204.
The title counted for a World Bowling Tour major title as well as a PBA International title, giving Jones his 14th career PBA crown for the 6,000,000 Yen, or US$75,000 first place prize.
The stepladder finals began with a five-man, one-game elimination round with the two low scores dropping. Japan’s Hiroki Suzuki rolled 190, and Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas, posted 180, finishing fourth and fifth, respectively. Rafiq Ismail, Malaysia, rolled the low score of 200 in the one-game semifinal round,leaving Jones, a three-time Japan Cup champion, and Rash, the reigning PBA Player of the Year for the final match.
Jones' PBA League team, the New York City WTT KingPins lost a tight final match to the Brooklyn StyLES, 225-215, in the opening round of PBA League action.
Others receiving votes were Jesper Svensson, winner ofthe EBT/WBT 43rd Brunswick Ballmaster Open; Shayna Ng, winner of the women's title at the International Bowling Championships supported by DHC;Scott Norton, winner of the PBA Earl Anthony Players Championship; and Jason Sterner, winner of the PBA Don Carter Classic; and Danielle McEwan and John Szczerbinski, women's and men's gold medalists at the 2013 Team USA Trials