This past week, I travelled to Sacramento, Calif. for the second stop of the PWBA Tour Season – The PWBA Storm Sacramento Open at Steve Cook’s Fireside Lanes.
This has been one of my favorite stops in the past as we always have a huge fan base and the center is always packed. This week was also awesome because I was able to talk my good luck charm into coming - bestie Scott Norton!
During the tournament this week, we competed without knowing the oil pattern. A lane graph was purposefully not posted and the pattern won’t be released until the TV show. Although an official pattern wasn’t posted, we definitely competed on a long pattern.
The format was exactly the same as the PWBA Sonoma County Open, with the exception that the lanes were freshly re-oiled in between every block. The scoring pace was again on the lower spectrum, which is perfectly fine with me since it puts a premium on shot making and picking up spares.
I started off strong the first block of qualifying, using my Hammer Scandal with 1000 grit, playing inside and shooting games of 235 and 196 before switching to my Scandal Pearl for a 226, 200 and 203. I then used my Ebonite Maverick Pearl the last game to shoot 212. Despite having a little bit of an issue with spares that block, I did manage to stay steady and shoot +72, which put me in 8th place overall.
We didn’t have much of a break in between blocks, as we had 5 people on a pair, which makes for a very long qualifying day. Prior to the start of the second block, I was presented with a special 300 ring for shooting 300 during the 2017 Team USA Trials. A nice surprise!
The second set, the lanes were pretty tough. I started out well shooting 228 again with my Hammer Scandal and then switched to my Scandal Pearl for a 216. I struggled the next couple of games to find the right look and shot 186 and 185. Then I switched to my Ebonite Game Breaker 2 Phenom Pearl and ended the block with 205 and 196 to shoot +16, putting me at +88 overall and in 9th place.
We had a very quick turnaround, not getting done until after 11pm Friday night, I was back in the center by 7:45am Saturday morning to get ready for the casher’s round. I again had the same game plan, shooting 195 and 218 to start. However, I then hit a couple of bad pairs and shot 184 and 172, which dropped me down to being 50 pins out of the top 12 cut to match play with 2 games to go.
I rallied and switched to my Ebonite Game Breaker 2 Phenom Pearl and managed to shoot 236 and 211 to secure the 12th and final spot into match play at +104 overall.
I knew there were a lot of games left, especially with the added bonus pins for winning each match. Although I tried my best, I just couldn’t seem to get anything going in match play. Despite not winning many matches, I still had an outside chance of making the stepladder finals going into position round. Unfortunately, things didn’t’ turn out the way I had hoped and I finished in 11th place overall in the tournament. With a high game of 235 and a low game of 172 for the entire tournament, I am pleased with my overall performance for the week.
All in all, still a great week and 2 for 2 on match play appearances this season.
Congratulations to Liz Johnson, Rocio Restrepo, Diana Zavjalova and Danielle McEwan for making the TV show.
Don’t forget! If you’re in the Southern California area, come out to Fountain Bowl in Fountain Valley, Calif. to watch the best women bowlers in the world compete at the PWBA Fountain Valley Open starting this Thursday, May 11th. For a full schedule, click here. Can’t wait to compete in my own backyard! See you on the lanes!
Action Photos courtesy of Kimberly Power