“This is very special to me,” Jones said of his 13th career title and first since the 2007-08 season. “It’s my sixth time here and the third time I’ve won. It’s a great honor to come here every year and it’s something that I look forward to every season.” It was a nerve-racking victory on several fronts. After starting with a spare and three strikes, Jones missed a 10 pin for an open frame in the fifth frame to give Castillo some hope. But Castillo failed to capitalize, leaving a 4-6-7 split in his fifth frame. When Jones threw a key strike in the eighth frame to cap another string of three strikes and virtually lock up the victory, he let out a scream of relief. “I was excited for that shot because it meant that I only needed to stay clean to shut Dino out,” Jones said. “That’s the position you want to be in and hitting the pocket was becoming more of a challenge. That’s why that shot was so important.” On his fifth-frame split, Castillo said, “I made sure I stayed aggressive with the shot but I got faked out. I wasn’t as far left as I should have been which caused a bad angle when the ball hit the pocket.” “Bowling at Tokyo Port Bowl is tough because the lanes transition faster because it’s an older surface,” he added. “I got a couple breaks earlier. Both (Brad) Angelo and (Mike) Fagan threw good shots in their 10th frames that didn’t carry, or I would have lost. And then I had to bowl my best friend.” Jones slipped past Brad Angelo of Lockport, NY, 252-247, in his first championship round match when Angelo failed to strike on his second shot in the 10th frame. He then eliminated Mike Fagan of Patchogue, NY, in the semifinal round, 223-213, when Fagan failed to strike on his first shot in the 10th. Castillo, in the meantime, defeated fellow non-titlist Chris Loschetter of Avon, OH,
255-225, in the Round of 8, and Norm Duke of Clermont, FL, 277-244, in his semifinal round match. “It was overwhelming but humbling,” Castillo said of his first television experience. “I still had to concentrate on bowling and not let the TV show atmosphere, fans and just the experience of it all affect me.” The 25th Japan Cup, televised nationally in Japan, was the final event of the 2009-10 Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour season. CHAMPIONSHIP Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C. ($40,000) def. Dino Castillo, Carrollton, Texas ($20,000), 223-192. SEMIFINAL ROUND (losers earned $10,000) Castillo def. Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 277-244. Jones def. Mike Fagan, Patchogue, N.Y., 223-213. ROUND OF 8 (losers earned $6,000) Duke def. Park Jeon-Soo, Korea, 279-243. Castillo def. Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 255-225. Jones def. Brad Angelo, Lockport, NY, 252-247. Fagan def. Choi Won Yong, Korea 257-203.