Brian LeClair Wins First Career PBA50 Tour Title in Thrilling Fashion

by Gianmarc Manzione 0

LeClair.Brian_AS_2013RPI(8)Brian LeClair of Delmar, N.Y., competed on the PBA Tour for 18 seasons without a title. But now, bowling as a rookie on PBA’s Tour for players 50 and over, he can lay claim to his first national PBA title after winning the PBA50 Fountain Valley Open presented by Track Wednesday at Fountain Bowl.

The win didn’t come easy.

After surviving two come-from-behind matches, which included a sudden-death roll-off in the championship match, LeClair defeated two-time PBA50 Tour titlist Lennie Boresch Jr. of Kenosha, Wis., for the title with a strike in the second sudden-death frame to Boresch’s nine-count after the players tied with 247 games. After both players struck in the first sudden death frame, Boresch left an eight pin on his shot to hand the win to LeClair.

“I don’t know what to say,” said LeClair, whose best showings on the PBA Tour were two second-place finishes. “This whole tournament was about finding a way to get it done. From choosing the right equipment to how I played the lanes, it was all about fighting back.

“My next win could come next week or 10 years from now, but what matters right now is that I won tonight.”

And fight back he did. In both the championship match and the semifinal match, when it appeared that he might be eliminated early, LeClair came from behind in dramatic fashion by throwing the last six strikes of the match. In the semifinal, he made his late-game run to defeat Paul McCordic of Sugar Land, Texas, 219-212, to advance to the championship match against Boresch.

Another illustration of the long road LeClair took to the title was having to claw his way through the casher’s round to even make it to match play.

“Throughout my career, there have been some who may have thought I didn’t have what it took to get it done. And, in some cases, maybe they were right,” LeClair said, “This time, there was no giving up. I guess I could have had the attitude that I was beaten in those matches, but I turned it around and thought if there was room for me to come back and win I could do it.”

Both of LeClair’s second-place PBA Tour finishes came in 1996 against Hall of Famer and all-time Tour titles leader, Walter Ray Williams Jr.

McCordic advanced to the semifinal match by defeating two-time PBA50 Tour and two-time PBA Tour titlist, Jack Jurek, of Lackawanna, N.Y., trying for his second win of the season, 237-207.

In the opening match, Jurek defeated PBA50 Tour rookie, Mike Scroggins, of Amarillo, Texas, who was trying for his third win of the season, 234-199.

The next stop for the PBA50 Tour will be Harvest Park Bowl in Brentwood, Calif., June 14-17 for the PBA50 Northern California Classic presented by MOTIV. The seventh stop of the 2015 season will be covered live in its entirety on PBA’s online bowling channel, Xtra Frame.

PBA50 FOUNTAIN VALLEY OPEN PRESENTED BY TRACK

Fountain Bowl, Fountain Valley, Calif., Wednesday

Final Standings

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

2, Lennie Boresch Jr., Kenosha, Wis., $4,000.

3, Paul McCordic, Sugar Land, Texas, $2,500.

4, Jack Jurek, Lackawanna, N.Y., $2,000.

5, Mike Scroggins, Amarillo, Texas, $1,750.

Stepladder Results

Match One – Jurek def. Scroggins, 234-199.

Match Two – McCordic def. Jurek, 237-207.

Semifinal Match – LeClair def. McCordic, 219-212.

Championship – LeClair def. Boresch 247-247. LeClair won sudden-death roll-off in second frame 10-9.

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

1, Lennie Boresch Jr., Kenosha, Wis., 6-0, 1,582.
2, Brian LeClair, Delmar, N.Y., 3-3, 1,498.
3, ss-Paul McCordic, Sugar Land, Texas, 4-2, 1,487.
4, Jack Jurek, Lackawanna, N.Y., 4-1-1, 1,457.
5, Mike Scroggins, Amarillo, Texas, 4-2, 1,436.
6, Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 4-2, 1,432, $1,500.
7, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Oxford, Fla., 3-3-0, 1,414, $1,500.
8, ss-Tom Baker, King, N.C., 2-4, 1,407, $1,500.
9, Chris Warren, Grants Pass, Ore., 3-3, 1,396, $1,300.
10, ss-Ted Staikoff, Black Hawk, S.D., 3-3, 1,369, $1,300.
11, Harry Sullins, Chesterfield Twp., Mich., 3-3, 1,361, $1,300.
12, Brian Voss, Centennial, Colo., 1-5, 1,351, $1,300.
13, Eric Forkel, Henderson, Nev., 2-4, 1,342, $1,300.
14, Pete Weber, St. Ann, Mo., 2-4, 1,325, $1,300.
15, Bryan Goebel, Shawnee, Kan., 2-4, 1,280, $1,300.
16, Robert Spaulding, Mckinney, Texas, 1-4-1, 1,232, $1,300.

Modified Match Play Round 1 (after five games, including match play bonus pins)

17, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 3-2, 1,150, $1,200.
18, Dana Wright, St. Paul, Minn., 3-2, 1,147, $1,200.
19, ss-Thomas Ream, Tampa, Fla., 3-2, 1,142, $1,200.
20, Ron Mohr, Las Vegas, 3-2, 1,139, $1,200.
21, ss-Roger Kossert, Lithia, Fla., 3-2, 1,138, $1,200.
22, Kevin Croucher, Grants Pass, Ore., 2-3, 1,137, $1,200.
23, ss-John Dudak, Orland Park, Ill., 2-3, 1,127, $1,200.
24, Christopher Keane, Cape Coral, Fla., 2-3, 1,124, $1,200.
25, Bob Learn Jr., Erie, Pa., 2-3, 1,099, $1,100.
26, ss-Jim Murtishaw, Menifee, Calif., 2-3, 1,089, $1,100.
27, Dave Arnold, Elk Grove, Calif., 2-3, 1,087, $1,100.
28, (tie) John Burkett, Southlake, Texas, 2-3, 1,077, and Doug Kempt, Arcadia, Calif., 2-3, 1,077, $1,100.
29, Warren Nelson, Middleburg, Fla., 2-3, 1,070, $1,100.
30, ss-Johnny Petraglia, Jackson, N.J., 1-4, 1,048, $1,100.
31, James Hansen, Anchorage, Alaska, 0-5, 957, $1,100.

Other Cashers (after five-game cashers’ round)

32, ss-Dale Eagle, Laguna Niguel, Calif., 1,035, $1,000.
33, ss-Dick Baker, Henderson, Nev., 1,031, $1,000.
34, Hugh Miller, Mercer Island, Wash., 1,030, $1,000.
35, Mike Dias, Lafayette, Colo., 1,017, $1,000.
36, Kerry Painter, Henderson, Nev., 1,011, $1,000.
37, Kent Whitson, Sausalito, Calif., 1,009, $1,000.
38, Terry Metzner, Kentwood, Mich., 968, $1,000.
39, Ron Winger, Las Vegas, 919, $1,000.
40, Glenn Morgan, Carson City, Nev., 902, $1,000.
41, Frank Gallo Jr., Jacksonville, Fla., 866, $1,000.

a-denotes amateur

ss-denotes PBA60 player age 60 and over

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