Thursday, August 13, 2009

PBA Cheetah Championship

In a battle between two Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) legends, Norm Duke defeated all-time Tour win leader Walter Ray Williams Jr. Wednesday to advance to the Round of 8 in the PBA Cheetah Championship at Thunderbowl Lanes.

Duke eliminated 45-time Tour titlist Williams 4-3 in the Round of 16 best-of-seven game match that he admitted was one he needed to be especially prepared for.

“It’s like playing Tiger Woods,” said the 45-year-old Duke who owns 29 career Tour titles. “You have to fight to beat him every frame. It seems that even on his worse day you have to fight to beat him. The last time we met he swept me all four games.”

Qualifying leader Ryan Ciminelli continued his march by defeating one of his mentors, four-time Tour champion Ryan Shafer 4-1. The 23-year-old Ciminelli led both rounds of qualifying as well as the Tour Qualifying Round (TQR).

“The difference in match play is that you have to pick and choose your adjustments more carefully and you don’t want to be in a situation where you need to make any risky moves,” Ciminelli said. “My heart was pounding out there. I had to keep telling myself to calm down.”

Hall of Famer Brian Voss also advanced to the Round of 8 by defeating Michael Fagan 4-2. “This week is very special to me,” said Voss. “I won my first title in Detroit and I have a lot of great memories from here.”

Others advancing to the Round of 8 were 2007-08 PBA Player of the Year Chris Barnes, Mike Wolfe, Derek Sapp, England’s Stuart Williams and Stevie Weber who eliminated reigning Player of the Year Wes Malott.

The eight players will compete in the Round of 8 today at 9 a.m. The semifinal round will take place at 2 p.m. and the championship match at 7 p.m. ET.

The Cheetah Championship, conducted on PBA’s Cheetah lane conditioning pattern, is the second tournament of the PBA World Series of Bowling which runs through Sept. 6. The entire Cheetah Championship is being taped with the highlight-style telecast airing on ESPN Sunday, Nov. 8, at 1 p.m. ET.

Thunderbowl Lanes, Allen Park, Mich., Aug. 12
Best-of-seven games. 8 winners advance to Thursday’s Round of 8.
Players eliminated earned $3,400.
Brian Voss, Kennesaw, Ga., def. Michael Fagan, Patchogue, N.Y., 4-2
Mike Wolfe, New Albany, Ind., def. Dino Castillo, Carrollton, Texas, 4-0
Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., def. Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala, Fla., 4-3
Ryan Ciminelli, Buffalo, N.Y., def. Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 4-1
Stevie Weber, Chalmette, La., def. Wes Malott , Pflugerville, Texas, 4-0
Derek Sapp, Keokuk, Iowa, def. Jack Jurek, Lackawanna, N.Y., 4-3
Stuart Williams, England, def. Rudy Kasimakis, Baldwyn, Miss., 4-0
Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, def. Sean Rash, Wichita, Kan., 4-3

Jack Jurek earned $100 for a 300 game.

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