NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. - In a 2015 title match that featured two of the PBA’s all-time greats with 72 PBA Tour wins between them, Parker Bohn III defeated Norm Duke, 263-222, on pba.com’s online bowling channel Xtra Frame to win the PBA50 Tour’s Pasco County Florida Open and kick off a great 2015 season opener.
Both players, who will be among a field of approximately 150 of the sport’s top stars ages 50 and over, will return for the 2016 Pasco County Florida Open at Lane Glo Bowl in New Port Richey, Fla., April 16-19 in what is becoming a traditional season-opening event for the PBA50 Tour.
Bohn and Duke are among a group of PBA legends competing in New Port Richey who compete full time on both the PBA Tour and PBA50 Tour. They include fellow Hall of Famers Walter Ray Williams Jr., 2014 Pasco County Open champion Amleto Monacelli and reigning PBA50 Player of the Year Pete Weber.
A testament to Bohn being able to compete at the highest level on both tours were his two wins on the PBA Tour last season which came in the Cheetah Championship and Barbasol PBA Players Championship for his third major PBA Tour title.
“It doesn't matter what Tour you’re on, one thing is the same,” Bohn said. “If you underestimate your opponent, you might as well pack your bags.”
Bohn’s second win of the 2015 PBA50 Tour season came in the Treasure Island Resort & Casino Open where he defeated Weber, 259-238, in the title match.
“In the two tournaments I won last year I had to beat Norm and Pete (Weber) in the championship match,” said Bohn, who owns 35 Tour and three PBA50 Tour titles. “After competing against these guys for 30 years, I can guarantee you it didn’t matter what tour we were on, we were out to win.”
Other Hall of Famers competing will be four-time PBA50 Player of the Year Tom Baker, 25-time PBA Tour winner Brian Voss, 14-time PBA Tour and eight PBA50 Tour winner Johnny Petraglia and 12-time PBA50 Tour winner Dale Eagle.
Also competing will be former all-star major league pitcher John Burkett who had a productive 2015 season making match play in five of the seven tournaments he entered with a best finish of fourth.
“There’s a lot to look forward to this year because of the expanded schedule and four majors,” Bohn said. “The fact that we go into new cities and we have Xtra Frame, which enables us to get exposure throughout the globe, I think the guys on the PBA50 Tour really appreciate the enhancements at least that’s what I’m feeling from my two years out here.”
Fans will be able to catch all the PBA50 Tour action throughout the season on Xtra Frame and have their choice of three subscription options -- three days for $3.99; a 30-day package for $7.99, and a 12-month Xtra Frame Season Ticket for $64.99. To enroll, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link.
Competition begins April 17 with the first of two eight-game qualifying rounds beginning at 10 a.m. All players will return for second-round qualifying on April 18 which also begins at 10 a.m. Following a cashers round, the top 32 players will advance to match play on April 19 beginning at noon which will determine the top five players for the stepladder finals scheduled for 7 p.m. A practice session will be held from 9 a.m. – noon on Saturday, April 16 and pro-am squads are scheduled at 1, 3 and 5 p.m.
For the first time, the expanded 15-tournament PBA50 Tour season will include four major tournaments, the Suncoast PBA Senior U.S. Open presented by 900 Global at Suncoast Bowling Center, Las Vegas (May 29-June 3); USBC Senior Masters at Sam’s Town Bowling Center, Las Vegas (June 19-25), the Treasure Island Resort & Casino PBA50 World Championship presented by Storm at Island Xtreme Bowl, Welch, Minn. (July 17-23) and the PBA50 National Championship to benefit the Riley Hospital for Children at Signature Lanes in Elkhart, Ind., (Aug. 14-17).
The 2016 PBA50 Tour will also determine the top eight players in points who will earn paid entries into GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling VIII in Reno where they also will compete in a PBA50 Tour Challenge qualifier. The top two players from the qualifier will advance to the PBA Challenge Finals along with top PBA Regional, PWBA-PBA Women’s Regional and Teen Masters contestants. Points awarded for PBA50 majors will be worth one and a half times of those awarded for a standard PBA50 Tour event.
The Pasco County Florida Open is presented by the Pasco County Tourist Development Council and sponsored by the Law Office of Lucas Magazine. Admission and pro-am entry information is available by calling (434) 227-0205 or visit KillerBPromotions.com. Youth, Senior and Adult Pro-Am information is also available at Lane Glo Bowl (727) 376-1164.
2016 PBA50 PASCO COUNTY FLORIDA OPEN SCHEDULE
Lane Glo Bowl, New Port Richey, Fla. (All times Eastern)
Saturday, April 16
9 a.m. – Noon - A & B Squads Practice Session
1, 3, 5 p.m. - Pro-Am Squads
Sunday, April 17
10 a.m. - A Squad qualifying (8 games)
4 p.m. - B Squad qualifying (8 games)
Monday, April 18
10 a.m. - B Squad qualifying (8 games)
4 p.m. - A Squad qualifying (8 games)
Tuesday, April 19
8:30 a.m. - Cashers Round
Noon – Match Play Round 1
3 p.m. – Match Play Round 2
7 p.m. – Five-player stepladder finals