AMF McRay - 11/14/2021

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Our event this weekend was at AMF McRay lanes and had a pretty good turnout for a two-squad event considering that we didn’t start until over an hour later than schedule.  The center’s lane machine was having issues and we are thankful for everyone that stayed through the delay.  We had a total of with 82 entries for the event (49 qualifying and 33 economy parlays) and had 24 total cashers, a 1 in 3.41 cash ratio and paid out over $3,900.00 in main and side event prize funds. The players bowled on the very tough 44ft PBA Carmen Salvino oil pattern.  The bowlers that were able to keep repeating their shot and leave makeable spares would see the most success.  If you missed just a bit inside or out, then you ended up with a split or a tough spare.  The pattern would be high scoring to start, but has the day went on it seemed that the lanes go tighter.

As always, we would like to welcome our newest members to the SFT AHT family. We want to welcome Brandon Strickland, David Young, Gavin Mlinar, Josh Wamsley, Justin Surat, Donnell Martin, Richard Vasquez, Mike Cecil, Kristi Simmes and Nick Noone who all participated in their first ever SFT AHT this Sunday.  Josh Wamsley, David Young and Justin Surat even made it to the quarterfinals in their first time out.  Congrats to our two Parlay Power Players in Alec Johnson and Michael Killgore, who both made it to the quarterfinals on their $25.00 economy parlay entry.  Your winner of the free plastic ball raffle, with an option to upgrade to any Track High Performance ball for $85.00, was John Johnson.

Since this event was only 2 squads, thankfully there was no re-oil before the quarterfinals.  This resulted in some very low scores with the standings being very tight as bowlers needed to bowl at least their average with one or two good games to make the cut.  We had 17 quarterfinalists.  The Divisions would see the A Division with 5 bowler, B and C Divisions would have 6 bowlers.  With our 1 in 3 cut ratio, from the quarterfinals to the semi-final round, we would cut to the top bowler in the A Division while the B and C Divisions would cut to the top two bowlers.  Your leader in the A Division would be Ron Gonzales (+83) and he would be seeded directly into the Finals, but first we would have to see who would meet him there.

The B Division #1 seed would be Rashaad Mayes (+118) and he would have to face off with Ron McDonald (+73).  In the C Division we would see newcomer Josh Wamsley (+68) emerge as the #1 seed and he would take on Marcus Haley (+56).  The C Division Semi-Final would go back and forth with both bowlers struggling with the lanes.  Marcus would get lined up, while Josh would run out of steam to win the match 222 to 166.

The B Division would be tightly contested from start to finish and it would all come down to the tenth frame to see who would advance to the Finals.  Rashaad would get up in the tenth needing only a mark and good count to close out the match.  Rashaad’s first ball in the tenth would go high through the nose leaving the 4-6 split.  Rashaad wouldn’t convert the spare leaving the door open for Ron.  Ron, who was coming off a double in the eighth and ninth frames, would need a double and at least 5 pins to win the match.  Ron’s first ball looked good off his hand and would crush the pocket.  Ron McDonald’s second shot would look a bit inside, but would hold the line to trip out the pins for another strike.  Ron would finish out the match with another strike to advance to the Finals, 249 to 243.

Going into the Finals we would see Marcus versus the Ron’s (Ron Gonzales and Ron McDonald).  Marcus would be making his first AHT SFT title appearance and was looking for his first title.  Ron McDonald was looking at winning his fifth title and standing in his way was current AHT SFT Player of the Year, Ron Gonzales.  Ron Gonzales was looking at tying the current AHT SFT title record, along with the late Lynn Arthur, at 10 titles.

The Finals would see all three bowlers struggling with the lane transition.  This would be the tenth game of the day on the pair and you could tell there was some over-under on the pair.  Marcus would jump out to a quick lead by making his spares and taking advantage of his handicap difference.  Ron McDonald would open in the first frame, but then double in the second and third frames to make up for it.  Ron McDonald would open in the fourth by chopping the 2-4-5 and would go on to go nine-spare in the fifth.  Ron Gonzales would start off the match with a strike, but would leave the 4-6-10 split in the second frame.  Ron Gonzales would go on a run with a 3-bagger in the third, fourth and fifth frames to stay with Marcus.

Midway through the match and everyone was within 10-15 pins of each other.  Ron Gonzales would again leave the 4-6-10 split, which he wouldn’t convert, in the sixth frame.  Marcus would struggle with transition as his ball would read the pattern early and crash through the head pin leaving splits in the fifth, sixth and seventh frames.  Ron McDonald would get himself out of the small hole he was in by striking in the sixth frame and picking up spares in the seventh, eighth and ninth frames.  Ron Gonzales strike in the seventh, 8-spare in the eighth and then open in the ninth after leaving the 1-3-10 wash out.

It looked like it would all come down to the tenth frame. Ron Gonzales would finish up first as he was able to double and get 6-pins on his fill ball to finish at 208.  This would put pressure on Ron McDonald and Marcus to match the double in order to win.  Ron McDonald would be up next and his first ball in the tenth would cruise right to the pocket for a strike.  His second ball in the tenth would look good off his hand, but hit light leaving the 4-pin.  Ron would pick up the spare to finish at 202.  Marcus would finish up the match needing a double and good count to win.  Marcus’ first ball in the tenth looked good off his hand but would read a bit early and hit high leaving the 3-10 baby split.  Marcus would pick off the tenth pin and finish at 190.  This would give Ron Gonzales the win and record tying 10th AHT SFT title and $650.00 first place prize!  Congrats to Ron McDonald for 2nd place and also to Marcus Haley on 3rd place.

Thank you to everyone that came out this Sunday and waited with us while the center was resolving the issues with the lane machine.  We hope to see you all next Saturday at Mesa East Bowl for another 2-squad event!  Hope you all have a great week!

FINALS - Ron Gonzales vs. Ron McDonald vs. Marcus Haley