Wow! What an event! What a conclusion to our 2018 season! Not only was it a huge turnout, but it had a lot of excitement as well! The event had 114 total entries (77 qualifying & 37 economy parlay), 31 cashers, a 1 in 3.6 cash ratio and paid out over $6,000.00 in main and side event prize fund. The players bowled on a 37ft Melbourne oil pattern that, as a short pattern, you would think would be high scoring, but it wasn’t that at all. The qualifying cut scores were all pretty low with it taking an average of +13 to advance to the quarter finals which isn’t even bowling average! It seemed that as the lanes started to carry down more, and the balls hooked less, it became spotty and difficult from pair to pair which really kept scoring low.
There was only one parlay power player this weekend in Steve Convirs who was trying to turn his $25 parlay investment into $1,000.00! We had quite a few first-time quarter finalists though! Congrats to Michael Koch, AJ Rodriguez, Sam Rodriguez, and Elma Henderson on advancing to their first ever quarter finals. Also, a big congrats to Sean Ashely who won Momma’s Mystery score again for $450 with a score of 203! Nearly every single player of the year points race was up for grabs going into this event, so how did they all end up? Let’s get into it!
The quarter finals was extremely low scoring with every division almost taking a minus score to advance to the semi-final round! It was clear that with the fresh strip and re-oil the lanes got much tougher. The A division had Zack Huglin striking out the in 10th frame to go around Sean Kearney for the last spot in the semi’s in the A division. He would be taking on Correen Lieber who was the #1 seed and won the last event we had at Brunswick Mesa, which was the Labor Day event. In the B division, it would a match that had A LOT of implications. Derek Hamm was the #2 seed taking on JJ Newell the #1 seed. This match was a chance for JJ to get a shot at making his first title match and to win his first title. If that isn’t a big deal, Derek Hamm needed to win the match to still have a chance to pass Josh Black for overall player of the year which is a huge prize! The C division was between would be between #1 seed Mike Hodge and #2 seed Chuck Lucas.
The A division semi-final match was close at the beginning with both players not striking a whole lot. A big four about half way through seemed to slow Zack down a bit and Correen was able to continue staying clean, put together a string and take a good-sized lead to clinch another A division title at Brunswick Mesa! In the B division, it appeared early on that Derek Hamm was feeling the large amount of pressure coming from trying to win the overall player of the year. He had a few shots early that won’t great and then he missed a makeable spare mid-way through. JJ Newell stayed clean the whole time and was able to put together a double to come away with his first ever B division title. This also meant that Derek Hamm’s run at being overall player of the year had ended and Josh Black locked up a huge honor in being 2018 SFT AHT player of the year! In the C division, Mike and Chuck had a much closer match and it went all the way down to the tenth where Mike opened in the 10th and Chuck needed to double to win, but wasn’t able to do so.
This meant our final match would be Correen Lieber vs Mike Hodge vs JJ Newell for $1,000.00!! This match was a lot like most of the semi-final matches. The players with less handicap starting off shaky, not making good shots and leaving open frames and the player with the most handicap making their spares and staying clean. By about the 7th frame it was already pretty clear that Mike Hodge was going to come away with his 3rd SFT AHT title this season in a pretty impressive and break out year for him. He has been bowling SFT since 2012 and had never won, and this year he won 3 times! Correen was able to make some clutch shots near the end of the game to take 2nd and JJ Newell finished 3rd.
We want to thank everyone for coming out and supporting our final event of the year! It has truly been an incredible season. We look forward to seeing you at either our banquet, invitational, or season ending meeting! See you guys there, or we will see you at our season opener on January 6th!