A field of more than 300 of the world’s top PBA professionals and amateur bowlers will be narrowed to the top four players who will advance to the stepladder finals of the 2012 Alka Seltzer Plus Liquid Gels USBC Masters which will be telecast live on ESPN at 12:30 p.m. ET Sunday from Sunset Station Strike Zone in Las Vegas.
After an emotional victory in the 2011 United States Bowling Congress Masters, Tom Hess of Urbandale, Iowa, will be trying to become the first player in four decades to win back-to-back titles in one of professional bowling’s most prestigious match play events. In 2011 he defeated Jack Jurek in the championship match, 225-214, for his first Tour title.
The challenging format featured 15 games of qualifying with the top 64 players advancing to the grueling double-elimination, three-game match play rounds.
The Masters has been a breakthrough event for amateurs and professionals like Hess. But the list of Masters champion also reads like a “who’s who” of bowling, among them are: Earl Anthony (1977, 1984), Mike Aulby (1989, 1995, 1998), Ernie Schlegel (1996), Don Carter (1961), Ray Bluth (1959), Billy Welu (1964, 1965), Dick Hoover (1956, 1957), Harry Smith (1958), Norm Duke (1993), Buzz Fazio (1955), Billy Golembiewski (1960, 1962), Danny Wiseman (2004), Sean Rash (2007), Doug Kent (2002, 2007), Mike Scroggins (2005), Parker Bohn III (2001), and Walter Ray Williams Jr. (2004, 2010).
The Masters began as a Clinic and Double Elimination Tournament at the 1951 ABC Tournament in St. Paul, MN with a field of 32 players. Eight of the nation’s top stars were invited and matched against eight of the best bowlers from St. Paul, eight from Minneapolis and eight others from other cities in Minnesota. Lee Jouglard of Detroit won the 1951 “Eliminations,” defeating Joe Wilman of Chicago.
Current brackets: http://scores.bowl.com/2012-masters/2012brackets.pdf