Wrap-up of Tuesday's Masters qualifying

Bluemound Bowl, Bowling, Miller Park, PBA Tour, They Came to Bowl, USBC Masters

First, the list of notable names in the top 122 (which will be the cut line after today's five-game blocks)...

  • 1st - Derek Eoff from Greenfield.  250.4 average
  • 3rd - Tommy Jones (PBA superstar that bowled in the 2006 finals at the State Fair Expo Center).  241.6 average
  • 16th - Lennie Boresch, Jr. from Kenosha.  230.4 average
  • 20th - Tim Janz from Beaver Dam.  225.8 average
  • 21st - Ralph Hibbard, Jr. from Mukwonago.  225.6 average
  • 22nd - Ben Hoefs from West Bend (who recently drilled a new ball for me).  225.4 average
  • 26th - Chad Kloss from Greenfield (and league teammate).  224.6 average
  • 32nd - Matt Stock from Omro.  222 average
  • 38th - Jack Jurek (PBA player that bowled in the 2006 finals at the State Fair Expo Center).  220.8 average
  • 41st - Ross Strand from Green Bay.  219.4 average
  • 45th - Joe Crocco from Racine.  218.8 average
  • 48th - Nick Plouff from Tomahawk.  218.4 average
  • 49th - Tish Johnson (former PWBA superstar and highest female qualifier).   218 average
  • 50th - Danny Wiseman (Masters champion from the 2004 finals at Miller Park).  217.6 average
  • 81st - George Lambert IV (amateur that bowled in the 2006 finals at the State Fair Expo Center).  211.4 average
  • 102nd - Todd Droulliard from Milwaukee (a legend in my Friday night league at Bluemound Bowl).  208.8 average
  • 108th - Jace Peterson from Elkhorn.  207.8 average
  • 111th - Mike Neau from Kenosha.  207.6 average
  • 114th - Chad Mass from Brookfield.  207.4 average
  • 119th - Joe Alivo from Milwaukee.  206.8 average

Not bad... 15 bowlers from Wisconsin above the cut line in an event sanctioned by the PBA.

As I had said that I would, I arrived at AMF Bowlero last night to watch the last qualifying block.  Here are some of my impressions...

  1. Derek Eoff is an amazing talent.  He is not a native of the Milwaukee area, rather, he graduated from Nebraska and ended up working at the USBC promoting Sport Bowling.  Eoff can take the toughest conditions and make them look easy.  I watched him off and on, and he was able to take a normally difficult inside line and create hold and swing area.  The bowlers change pairs after each game, and he had no trouble averaging 250 on whichever pair he bowled.
  2. Conversely, Norm Duke struggled mightily.  I watched his third game (he had only averaged about 190 for the first two games, which is very un-Duke-like).  He had the right idea playing way inside, but I believe that he was using the wrong ball.  He was targeting inside the fifth arrow (25th board), but his breakpoint wasn't consistent and he was leaving a lot of spares.  I don't believe he had a 180 game the third game.  He must have figured something out the last two games as he averaged 206 for the five games and is currently in 126th place.
  3. Walter Ray Williams, Jr. also struggled for the first couple of games.  Although he had a 220-something the first game, I watched most of his second game and he was targeting the 3rd arrow and was having similar problems as Duke.  He would leave a flat-10 (meaning his ball did not have enough energy to carry), then the next shot was a 4-9 split (indicating the ball had too much energy).  On a professional lane condition, almost as important as how well a player throws the ball is what part of the lane a player plays and with which equipment.  By the time I got back around to watching Williams in the fifth game, he had moved to the sixth arrow (30th board) with a sanded ball and his break point was about the 50 foot mark at the 12th board.  But the energy that was stored up... he carried everything and it wasn't even like work for him.  He ended that game with a 270 to pull into 15th place.
  4. I was seated near Aaron Jones from Chicago in the second game as he bowled the second 300 game of the tournament.  I watched the last six shots, and they were smooth as silk... there wasn't a doubt about any of those balls.  Aaron is in 53rd place.
  5. Chad Kloss also had a big fifth game, finishing with 11 strikes in a row for a 290 game.  I'd bet he blogs about that game.
  6. A bottle of Miller High Life was $3.17.  $3.17?  Think about it.  At a bar.  $3.17.
  7. Mike Jamrose from Milwaukee (who works at the same place I do) struggled to a 199.8 average.  I talked to him this morning and he said that he was making lousy shots.  I had watched him on and off last night, and it seemed like every non-strike was a ball that was high.  He said is biggest problem, however, was that three of the five games he had an open frame in the 10th frame.  If he would have been clean in just those frames, he would be above the cut line.  He is currently in 201st place.
  8. Doug Schmidt, author of They Came to Bowl:  How Milwaukee Became America's Tenpin Capital was at Bowlero signing copies of his book. 

I won't be able to get back to Bowlero again this week (unfortunately) so I won't have any more observations to pass along.  I will continue to provide updates.

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