This weekend’s event was at Bowlero Mesa and we had another great turnout! We would see a record 72 bowlers on our very first squad and we would see 154 total entries (95 qualifying and 59 economy parlays), had 40 prize winners, a 1 in 3.82 cash ratio and paid out over $7,650.00 in main and side event prize funds. The players bowled on a very tough 41ft Kegel Arsenic oil pattern that seemed to get harder as the day went on. The key to this pattern was to leave makeable spares and try not to split or miss any spares. Those that were able to pick up their spares and get near their average were able to advance to the quarterfinals.
We had Riley Dempsey as our SFT Coach for the day. Riley is a resource that is open to all bowlers that are bowling the event. If you had any questions regarding how to attack the pattern or which equipment would be good to use, then it would’ve been beneficial to get some advice from him. The only time that bowlers would have to pay for the Coach is if they were going to agree to get a quick lesson to work on any physical game or see how their ball reaction was on the actual pattern. We hope to continue to offer this great resource so that more bowlers are able to take advantage to learn and grow in the upcoming events.
We want to welcome quite a few new bowlers to the SFT AHT Family from this weekend. Marc Hoyer, Gene Green, Wanda Green, Scott Baker, Eddie Wilcox, Johnny Smith, Donny Dalton, Allison Huizenga, Amarr Bryant, Kenny Koen, Roy Gross and William Roberts all bowled in their first tournament this weekend! It’s great to see that we still have new bowlers coming out to give our tournament club a try after all these years. We hope you all enjoyed yourself, and we hope to see you again soon!
We had a few Parlay Power Players this weekend in Kyle Abbas, Jennifer Peterson and Mackenzie Ickes. All three bowlers were able to turn their $25.00 parlay entry into a Semi-Finals check and Jennifer even had a chance at the $1,300.00 first place prize, but more on that later. We also want to congratulate everyone who made it to their first Quarterfinals or their first Quarterfinals in quite a while. Congrats to Kyle Abbas, Steve Marks, Chip Carr, Brian Jackson, Don Stone and Kenny Koen! Also, congrats to Kenny Koen who made the Quarterfinals in his very first event! We didn’t have anyone win the Momma’s Mystery Pot this weekend, well we did but they were not in the pot, so we have 3 pots worth $500.00 each and a fourth at $390.00! The winner of the free plastic bowling ball, with an option to upgrade to any Track high performance ball for $85.00, was Peyton Lee.
The quarterfinals were bowled on the fresh oil pattern and scores were very low. With the great turnout we had over 9 bowlers in each Division for the Quarterfinals and with our cut ratio being 1 in 3, we would cut to the Top 3 for the Semi-Final round. It seemed like if you could get your average or close to it you had a chance to make it to the Semi-Finals. It looked like it would all come down to the final game in the Quarterfinals to see who would make it.
In the A Division, your #1 seed would be Kyle Abbas (+20) and he would have face off with #2 seed Chris Tucker (+18) and #3 seed James (Jay Jay) Newell, Jr. (-5). The B Division #1 seed would be Brian Richardson (+45) and he would take on #2 seed Jennifer Peterson (+0) and #3 seed Brandon Johnsonkroman (-7). The C Division #1 seed was Clarence Young (-13) versus #2 seed Mackenzie Ickes (-16) and #3 seed Robert Smith, Jr. (-21). The advantage of each #1 seed player is that they are able to pick the pair of lanes that they want their match to take place. Also, another advantage is that they get to choose the order of which player would start.
The A Division semi-final match would see Kyle Abbas and Chris Tucker struggle with lane transition while Jay Jay Newell would catch fire. Kyle would finish up the match at 162 and Chris would come in at 148. Jay Jay would easily win the match shooting a huge 256 game, 244 scratch, to punch his ticket into the Finals.
The B Division semi-final match would start off with all three bowlers going back and forth trying to find a line. Going through the first half of the match all three would remain pretty close together. Going into the latter part of the match we would see Brandon Johnsonkroman struggle with a couple of untimely splits, which he wouldn’t be able to spare, and it would take him out of the match. Brandon would finish up in 3rd place in the Division with a 164 game. The rest of the match would come down to Jennifer and Brian’s tenth frame as both were within a few pins of each other. Brian would finish up his tenth frame first as he was coming off a strike in the ninth and needed to mark and good count to force Jennifer to strike in the tenth. Brian’s first shot in the tenth would go a bit wide, hitting the pocket late and leaving the 2-4. Brian’s spare attempt would go a bit left and chop off the 4-pin to finish at 206. This would mean that Jennifer would only need to mark and get good count in to win. Jennifer’s first shot in the tenth would also go wide and leave a washout (1-2-4-10) that she needed to spare to win. She would get up and shoot her spare ball at the 1-2 getting the 1-pin to kick over and pick up the 10-pin. Jennifer would get nine on the fill which would to give her the win with a 217.
The C Division Semi-Final match would be a grind fest as all three bowlers struggled with the lane pattern. All three bowlers were within a few pins of each over in regards to handicap, so it would all come down to who could stay keep and pick up spares. Clarence and Mackenzie would remain close for most of the match but would miss a couple of spares to leave the door open for Robert. Robert was able to keep the lane in play by picking up his spares and getting good count on all his shots. Clarence would finish up the match at 205 and Mackenzie would follow at 202. Robert would finish up with 226 to win the match and get himself into the Finals.
Going into the Final match we would see all both Robert and Jennifer looking to get their 2nd title, while Jay Jay was looking for his first title, along with the $1,300.00 first place prize!! It looked like it would come down to who could minimize their mistakes and able to make spares. Jennifer Peterson was making a run at the title after making it to the Finals just off her $25.00 economy parlay entry. Robert Smith, Jr. has been improving his game over the past few months and was looking to capitalize on how well he was bowling. Jay Jay had made the Finals before at our Casa Grande event, but had come up a bit short finishing in third place and he was looking to improve on that finish. The favorite in the match had to be Jay Jay as he was just coming off of a 256 game and as long as he could figure out the pair, he had a chance to win it all.
The Final match would see Jay Jay and Jennifer start off by striking, while Robert would open after leaving the 1-3-8-9. Going forward Jay Jay would be on pace for a Dutch 200 as he was able to strike on the left lane, but could not figure out how to carry on the right lane. Jennifer would open in the 2nd frame as she would be unable to convert the 3-10, then would spare in the next four frames. Robert would settle down and spare in the second, third and fourth frames to make up for his open in the first frame.
At the midpoint of the Finals match we would see all three bowlers’ neck and neck. Jay Jay would make a ball change in the fifth frame as he was trying to figure out the lane transition. The reason for the sudden ball change was that Jay Jay needed to strike in order to overcome the handicap difference as he would be spotting Jennifer 16 pins and Robert 31 pins. Jay Jay’s ball change would see him leave the 1-10 in the sixth frame and also another split in the seventh (2-4-8-10), which he wasn’t able to convert. Jennifer was able to keep making spares and would strike in the seventh frame. It looked like she was going to cruise along for the win but a funky split in the eighth, in which she would leave the 5-8-10 that she wouldn’t convert, would open the door for Robert. Robert would continue to mark and spare for most of the match and with Jennifer’s split looked like he was about to get his hands on his 2nd title. Going into the ninth frame Robert would also leave a very weird split where he would hit the pocket light, but would leave the 4-6-7 standing and he wasn’t able to convert. Now Jay Jay would go back to the original ball that he started the match with in the eighth and would strike. With the two opens by Jennifer and Robert, Jay Jay would get up and strike again in the ninth to give himself a chance going into the tenth.
Jay Jay would strike in the tenth and then go a bit wide to leave the 1-2-4 which he would spare to fill out the frame and finish at 204. This would leave it up to Robert needing to double in the tenth to win the match. Robert would get up and strike on his first shot in the tenth. Now he needed to double to get by Jay Jay. Robert’s second shot would come up a bit high just leaving a wobbling 6-pin, which he would spare, to finish the match at 200. Jennifer would finish up the match needing to strike and get good count to win. Jennifer’s first shot in the tenth would hit the pocket but leave a stone 8-pin and she would pick up and strike on the fill to finish at 199. This would give James (Jay Jay) Newell, Jr. his first AHT SFT title and $1,300.00!!! Congrats to Robert Smith, Jr. on 2nd place and also to Jennifer Peterson on 3rd place. Wow, this was one of the closest Finals we’ve had in a while.
We apologize for the delay between squads and not being on time today, but thank you all for coming out and supporting our event. This is the fourth event in a row where we’ve paid out at least $1,000.00 for first place! Hopefully we’ll continue that streak at AMF Tempe Village on Sunday, May 16th! Hope to see you all there!!!
FINALS - James (Jay Jay) Newell, Jr. vs Jennifer Peterson vs. Robert Smith, Jr.