Brian LeClair Wins Back-to-Back PBA50 Tour Titles with South Shore Open Victory

by Jerry Schneider, Professional Bowlers Association 0

HAMMOND, Ind. (July 18, 2019) – Brian LeClair joined Walter Ray Williams Jr. as the only multiple winners on the PBA50 Tour this season by capturing the PBA50 South Shore Open presented by Ebonite title Thursday at Olympia Lanes for his second consecutive title of the season.

LeClair, also the top seed for the stepladder finals for the second consecutive week, defeated fellow New Yorker Sammy Ventura of Syracuse in the title match 214-203 for his fifth career PBA50 Tour title. LeClair also won last week’s PBA50 River City Extreme Open as top seed.

“I’m in a place now where I have confidence that I’m making all the right decisions,” said the 54-year-old LeClair. “When you have that confidence and don’t have to second guess yourself, you can really build some momentum.”

The title match was a good example of how the 2017 PBA50 Player of the Year had to make the right adjustments on each lane of the championship pair.

Ventura, trying for his first PBA50 Tour title, got off to an early lead in the title match leading by seven pins in the fifth frame but the momentum shifted when LeClair struck in the seventh, eighth and ninth frames and Ventura left a 2-10 split in the ninth frame which he failed to convert ending his bid for the win.

“Making the right adjustments was really crucial in the title match,” said LeClair, who went undefeated in match play earlier in the day which helped vault him to the top seed for the finals “I was throwing two totally different shots, playing the left lane throwing the ball faster and more direct to the pocket and the right lane having to throw the ball slower and hook it more. It can be a disaster if you don’t have the confidence to play two totally different shots on each lane and expect to win.”

Williams, who didn’t bowl in Hammond because he was competing in PBA League competition in Portland, Maine, started the season with wins in the first three tournaments.

Ventura, trying for his first PBA50 Tour win, notched his second runner-up finish of the season, also finishing second in the Johnny Petraglia BVL Open.

Ventura, the No. 4 seed started the stepladder with a 227-198 win over No. 5 seed five-time Go Bowling! PBA Tour winner Ryan Shafer of Horseheads, New York, who was also trying for his first PBA50 Tour win.

Ventura then defeated PBA Hall of Famer and 10-time PBA50 Tour winner Ron Mohr of Las Vegas, 223-177, in the second match to advance to the semifinal match against three-time PBA50 Tour titlist Harry Sullins of Chesterfield Twp., Michigan. In a high-scoring match, Ventura started with the first eight strikes which was enough to hold off Sullins to win 268-245.

Mohr survived a long road to the finals advancing through the cashers’ round and two match play rounds to make it to the championship round. Sullins was trying to end an eight-year title drought with his last win coming in the 2011 Senior Lake County Open at Olympia Lanes.

The PBA50 Tour travels to Anderson, Ind. for the PBA50 David Small’s Championship Lanes Classic presented by Roto Grip July 20-23. Fans can follow all the action via PBA’s online streaming partner FloBowling. For subscription and schedule information


presented by Ebonite
Olympia Lanes, Hammond, Ind., Thursday


Final Standings:

1, Brian LeClair, Albany, N.Y., $7,500.

2, Sammy Ventura, Syracuse, N.Y., $4,000.

3, Harry Sullins, Chesterfield Twp., Mich. $2,500.

4, Ron Mohr, Las Vegas, $2,000.

5, Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., $1,750.

Stepladder Results:

Match One – Ventura def. Shafer, 227-198.

Match Two – Ventura def. Mohr, 223-177.

Semifinal Match – Ventura def. Sullins, 268-245

Championship Match – LeClair def. Ventura, 214-203.

Modified Match Play Round 2 (after six games, including match play bonus pins. Top five advance to stepladder finals):

1, Brian LeClair, Albany, N.Y., 6-0, 1,670.
2, ss-Harry Sullins, Chesterfield Twp., Mich., 5-1, 1,603.
3, ss-Ron Mohr, Las Vegas, 5-1, 1,533.
4, ss-Sammy Ventura, Syracuse, N.Y., 4-1-1, 1,515.
5, Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 4-1-1, 1,453.
6, Bob Learn Jr., Erie, Pa., 3-3 1,440, $1,500.
7, Paul Fleming, Fort Worth, Texas, 5-1, 1,438, $1,500.
8, ss-Darryl Bower, Middletown, Pa., 2-4, 1,384, $1,400.
8, Lennie Boresch Jr., Kenosha, Wis., 2-4, 1,384, $1,400.
10, n-ss-Leroy Johnson, Chicago, 2-4, 1,382, $1,300.
11, Doug Becker, Clermont, Fla., 2-4, 1,374, $1,300.
12, ss-Bruce Hall, Westborough, Mass., 2-4, 1,352, $1,300.
13, Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 2-4, 1,325, $1,300.
14, Brian Kretzer, Dayton, Ohio, 2-4, 1,225, $1,300.
15, Dean Billings, Rootstown, Ohio, 0-6, 1,182, $1,300.
16, Gary Alstott, Washington, Ill., 1-5, 1,150, $1,300.

Modified Match Play Round 1 (other cashers after five games, including match play bonus pins, $1,100 each)

17, Jeff Richgels, Oregon, Wis., 2-3, 1,158
18, Chris Gibbons, Madison, Wis., 1-4, 1,149
19, Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., 1-4, 1,128
20, ss-Mike Dias, Lafayette, Colo., 2-3, 1,127
21, ss-John Dudak, Orland Park, Ill., 2-3, 1,125
22, Michael Haugen Jr., Phoenix, 2-3, 1,088.
23, Greg Thomas, Irmo, S.C., 0-5, 1,057.
24, Gary Faulkner, Norfolk, Va., 2-3, 1,021.

Other Cashers (after five-game cashers’ round, $1,000 each)

25, Tony Johnson, Canton, Ohio, 1,086
26, ss-Gary Kammes, Winfield, Ill., 1,084
27, John Marsala, St. Louis, Mo., 1,070
28, Brad Snell, Mount Prospect, Ill., 1,028
29, ss-Edward Silva, Manteca, Calif., 1,017
30, Jeff Johnson, Freeport, Ill., 992
30, Todd Kjell, Roscoe, Ill., 992
32, ss-Terry Metzner, Kentwood, Mich., 987
33, ss-Dave Bernhardt, Romeo, Mich., 985
34, ss-Dick Gran, Hartville, Ohio, 982
35, ss-Lee Brosius, Ashburn, Va., 981
36, John Burkett, Southlake, Texas, 965
37, James Campbell, Clearwater, Fla., 927
38, ss-Steven Jansson, Barnes, Wis., 851

n-non-PBA member

ss-PBA60 player ages 60 and over

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