Kovalova Holds Queens Lead as Wegner, Cote Enter Top Five

by Matt Cannizzaro, USBC Communications 0

RENO, Nev. – Ukraine’s Daria Kovalova continued to pace the 191-player field at the 2018 United States Bowling Congress Queens and leads for the second consecutive round.

The 23-year-old right-hander rolled games of 211, 230, 205, 267 and 226 for a 1,139 five-game block Friday at the National Bowling Stadium to bring her overall total to 2,384, a 238.4 average.

The 2018 USBC Queens, the first major on the 2018 Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour schedule, will run through May 22 at the famed 78-lane venue, with the stepladder finals being broadcast live on CBS Sports Network on May 22 at 8 p.m. Eastern.

Kovalova started the 2018 event with a blistering performance Thursday, averaging 249 for her first block. She was eager to return to the NBS for Friday’s second round and quickly settled in after trying a few different things in the early going on the fresh 38-foot lane condition.

Also helping Kovalova settle in was having several of her former Wichita State University teammates in this week’s field.

Kovalova was a standout during her collegiate career with the Shockers. She was named a National Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association All-American in each of her four seasons and was the most valuable player during the 2014-2015 season.

“I tried to not get ahead of myself because I was a little anxious and couldn’t sleep very well last night,” Kovalova said. “But it’s great to have my teammates here. I’m much more comfortable knowing they have my back. They always support me, which really is a big thing.”

Kovalova will continue to keep an open mind heading into Saturday’s final round of qualifying.

“I’ll see what’s going to happen tomorrow,” Kovalova said. “The lanes will play a little different, but I will try to stick to what I’ve been using.”

Sweden’s Jenny Wegner put together the highest block during Friday’s second round to jump into second place with 2,337. Wegner rolled games of 236, 279, 233, 221 and 216 for a 1,185 total.

Two-time Queens champion Kelly Kulick of Union, New Jersey, is third with 2,286, while Shannon O’Keefe of O’Fallon, Illinois, and Bryanna Cote of Red Rock, Arizona, round out the top five with 2,275 and 2,271, respectively.

Defending champion Diana Zavjalova of Latvia dropped to 20th place in the standings after a 1,018 block Friday. She has a 10-game total of 2,178.

Zavjalova, a two-time Queens champion, is guaranteed the No. 64 spot in the double-elimination match-play bracket at Queens, but bowling qualifying will give her a chance to improve her seeding.

Qualifying will conclude Saturday, with both squads bowling on the fresh lane condition. All players will bowl 15 games of qualifying over three days to determine the 63 competitors joining Zavjalova in match play.

With five games remaining in qualifying, there are three players tied for 63rd place. Indonesia’s Aldila Indryati, Debbie Ayers of La Mesa, California, and Samantha Kelly of Waukesha, Wisconsin, each are at 2,086, a 208.6 average.

The match-play bracket will feature three-game matches with total pinfall determining who advances. The five players who make their way through the bracket will advance to the stepladder finals and have the chance to take home the top prize of $20,000.

All rounds of competition leading up to the stepladder finals will be broadcast on Xtra Frame, the exclusive online bowling channel for the Professional Bowlers Association. To subscribe to watch the action on Xtra Frame, visit XtraFrame.TV.

For more information on the USBC Queens, visit BOWL.com/Queens.

2018 USBC Queens
At National Bowling Stadium
Reno, Nev.

Friday’s results

QUALIFYING – ROUND 2
(Top 100; 10 games)

For complete standings, visit BOWL.com/Queens

1, Daria Kovalova, Ukraine, 2,384. 2, Jenny Wegner, Sweden, 2,337. 3, Kelly Kulick, Union, N.J., 2,286. 4, Shannon O'Keefe, O'Fallon, Ill., 2,275. 5, Bryanna Cote, Red Rock, Ariz., 2,271. 6(tie), Liz Johnson, Palatine, Ill., Elysia Current, Ephrata, Pa., and Diandra Asbaty, Chicago, 2,270.
9, Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, Keller, Texas, 2,238. 10, Stefanie Johnson, McKinney, Texas, 2,230. 11, Rocio Restrepo, Louisville, Ohio, 2,226. 12, Cajsa Wegner, Sweden, 2,219.
13, Cassandra Leuthold, Lincoln, Neb., 2,217. 14(tie), Erin McCarthy, Omaha, Neb., and Jordan Richard, Tipton, Mich., 2,208. 16, Aseret Zetter, Mexico, 2,192. 17, Jennifer King, Cold Spring, Ky., 2,190. 18, Julia Bond (n), Aurora, Ill., 2,187.
19, Sandra Andersson, Sweden, 2,183. 20, Diana Zavjalova, Latvia, 2,178. 21, Josie Barnes, Nashville, Tenn., 2,176. 22, Birgit Poppler, Germany, 2,172. 23, Tish Johnson, Colorado Springs, Colo., 2,171. 24, Sierra Kanemoto (n), Riverside, Ohio, 2,168.
25, Kayla Bandy, Salisbury, Md., 2,165. 26(tie), Tannya Roumimper, Indonesia, and Lilia Robles, Mexico, 2,164. 28, Ashly Galante, Palm Harbor, Fla., 2,162. 29, Haley Richard, Tipton, Mich., 2,159. 30, Lorie Schmidt (n), Henderson, Nev., 2,153.
31, Giselle Poss, Nashville, Tenn., 2,151. 32, Shannon Pluhowsky, Dayton, Ohio, 2,149. 33, Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., 2,148. 34, Lindsay Boomershine, Perry, Utah, 2,147. 35, Natalie Goodman, O'Fallon, Ill., 2,145. 36, Clara Guerrero, Colombia, 2,144.
37, Maria Jose Rodriguez, Colombia, 2,138. 38, Katie Ann Sopp (n), White Bear Lake, Minn., 2,133. 39, Jackie Carbonetto, Clarksville, Tenn., 2,132. 40, Megan Kelly, Dayton, Ohio, 2,127. 41, Anna Andersson (n), Sweden, 2,125. 42(tie), Nina Flack, Sweden, and Mandy Etem (n), Cave Creek, Ariz., 2,119.
44(tie), Anneli Blomqvist (n), Sweden, and Taylor Bulthuis (n), Coral Springs, Fla., 2,117. 46, Jennifer Russo (n), Monmouth Junction, N.J., 2,114. 47, Summer Jasmin, Beckley, W.Va., 2,113. 48(tie), Stephanie Casey (n), Yonkers, N.Y., and Victoria Johansson (n), Sweden, 2,112.
50(tie), Verity Crawley, England, Brenda Padilla, Mansfield, Texas, Sandra Gongora, Mexico, and Missy Parkin, Laguna Hills, Calif., 2,111. 54, Estefania Cobo (n), Puerto Rico, 2,107.
55, Amanda Fry, Antelope, Calif., 2,104. 56, Kristie Leong (n), Daly City, Calif., 2,101. 57, Trista Kimmes, Eagan, Minn., 2,100. 58, Stephanie Schwartz, Racine, Wis., 2,099. 59, Leanne Hulsenberg, Pleasant View, Utah, 2,092. 60, Kalee Tripp (n), Butte, Mont., 2,091.
61, Ida Andersson, Sweden, 2,089. 62, Adriana Perez (n), Mexico, 2,087. 63(tie), Aldila Indryati (n), Indonesia, Debbie Ayers, La Mesa, Calif., and Samantha Kelly, Waukesha, Wis., 2,086. 66, Tina Williams (n), Phoenix, 2,084.
67, Elise Bolton, Merritt Island, Fla., 2,083. 68, Daria Pajak, Poland, 2,079. 69, Sydney Brummett, Wichita, Kan., 2,078. 70, Jasmine Snell (n), Papillion, Neb., 2,075. 71(tie), Shannon Sellens (n), Copiague, N.Y., Sharon Limansantoso (n), Indonesia, and Lauren Pate (n), Inver Grove Heights, Minn., 2,074.
74, Nadia Nuramalina (n), Indonesia, 2,072. 75, Annie Thorell, Sweden, 2,067. 76, Jen Higgins, Westerville, Ohio, 2,065. 77, Brandi Branka, Fairview Heights, Ill., 2,058. 78, Bree Macpherson, Australia, 2,055.
79, Britney Brown (n), Chicago, 2,053. 80, Desiree Negron (n), Puerto Rico, 2,050. 81, Juliana Franco, Colombia, 2,048. 82, Iliana Lomeli, Mexico, 2,047. 83(tie), Amber Vega, Orangevale, Calif., and Laura Plazas, Colombia, 2,041.
85, Trisha Reid (n), Columbus, Ohio, 2,039. 86, Olivia Sandham, Saint Joseph, Mo., 2,038. 87, Caycee Landers, Brockport, N.Y., 2,037. 88, Karen Barcal, Albuquerque, N.M., 2,034. 89, Kaidee Sutphin, Orlando, Fla., 2,030. 90, Karen Marcano, Venezuela, 2,027.
91, Brianna Andrew (n), Orland Park, Ill., 2,025. 92, Briana Zabierek (n), Lockport, Ill., 2,020. 93, Stephanie Martins, Brazil, 2,019. 94(tie), Joely O'Grady (n), Matawan, N.J., Amanda Vermilyea (n), Apple Valley, Minn., and Nicole Wilson (n), Livonia, Mich., 2,017.
97, Dena Buxton, Australia, 2,016. 98, Mariana Ayala, Euless, Texas, 2,006. 99, Jodi Woessner, Oregon, Ohio, 2,004. 100(tie), Michelle Sterner (n), Niagara Falls, N.Y., Pamela Alvarez, San Diego, and Liz Kuhlkin, Schenectady, N.Y., 2,001.

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