LUBBOCK, Texas (June 11, 2017) – In a duel of past PBA Rookies of the Year, Marshall Kent of Yakima, Wash., ended a personal quest for his first PBA singles title in the U.S. Sunday, defeating EJ Tackett of Huntington, Ind., 233-194, in the PBA Xtra Frame Lubbock Sports Open at South Plains Lanes Saturday.
Kent, who won his only previous PBA Tour singles title in Saudi Arabia in 2014, locked out Tackett with a string of six strikes to finish the title match after Tackett struggled until the ninth and 10th frames to throw two strikes in a row.
“I had a game plan going in to do what I did all week, which basically meant making moves to the left and making good shots,” Kent said. “It looks like I made enough good shots down the stretch to get the job done.
“I’m still trying to process the win,” he added. “It means the world. It’s been a long time. It feels unbelievable. I haven’t been bowling that well lately, so I spent 15 hours last week practicing, putting in the extra time to get ready.”
The Lubbock Sports Open were a showcase for the PBA’s youth movement. Tackett, PBA’s reigning Player of the Year and Lubbock’s top qualifier, was the oldest of three 24-year-olds in the stepladder field, just a few weeks older than Kent and fourth-place finisher AJ Johnson of Oswego, Ill. Third-place finisher Jakob Butturff of Tempe, Ariz., is 23. Tackett was PBA’s 2013 Rookie of the Year; Kent won that honor in 2014.
Kent kicked off the four-man stepladder finals with a string of six strikes on his way to a 259-228 victory over Johnson. He then took advantage of Butturff’s inability to carry strikes early in the semifinal match, posting a 222-217 victory to advance to the title match against Tackett, who helped Kent win his second PBA Tour title as Merica Rooster Illusion teammates in winning the PBA Team Challenge in Las Vegas last fall.
Butturff, the defending champion and the only left-hander among the top 16, made a big move during the six-game cashers round, averaging 259.5 behind games of 259, 258, 258, 234, 259 and 289 to charge out of 11th place into the lead heading into the eight-game match play round. The Tempe, Ariz., resident held the lead until his final position round match where he lost to Tackett, 228-165, dropping to second place for the stepladder finals and eventually finishing third.
With his second-place finish, Tackett took the lead in the Xtra Frame Storm Cup points race, picking up 19 points for a 53-point total to move ahead of previous leader Dom Barrett of England who finished in a tie for 28th, failing to add to his 46-point total. Lubbock was the fourth event in the seven-tournament Xtra Frame Storm Cup series that will reward the top five points leaders with shares of a $50,000 bonus prize pool.
After a 13-day break, PBA’s 2017 Xtra Frame Tour continues June 24-25 with the “throwback” PBA Xtra Frame Billy Hardwick Memorial Open at Billy Hardwick’s All Star Lanes in Memphis, Tenn. The tournament will allow each player to use only two limited-technology polyester plastic balls, more in the tradition of technology used by the late PBA Hall of Famer during the early years of the PBA. All of the Memphis action will be streamed live on PBA’s Xtra Frame online bowling channel. Three-day, 30-day and annual subscription packages are available. Visit xtraframe.tv for details.
PBA XTRA FRAME LUBBOCK SPORTS OPEN presented by Ebonite
South Plains Lanes, Lubbock, Texas, June 11
1, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., $12,500.
2, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., $7,000.
3, Jakob Butturff, Tempe, Ariz., $4,000.
4, AJ Johnson, Oswego, Ill., $2,500.
Match One: Kent def. Johnson, 259-228.
Semifinal Match: Kent def. Butturff, 222-217.
Championship: Kent def. Tackett, 233 -194.
Final Match Play Standings (after 22 games, including match play bonus pins):
1, Tackett, 7-1, 5,332.
2, Butturff, 3-5, 5,279.
3, Johnson, 5-3, 5,267.
4, Kent, 5-3, 5,253.
5, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 6-1-1, 5,242, $2,200.
6, Craig Nidiffer, Trenton, Mich., 4-4, 5,240, $1,900.
7, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 5-3, 5,186, $1,700.
8, Sean Lavery-Spahr, Pasadena, Texas, 4-4, 5,154, $1,550.
9, Kris Koeltzow, Wheat Ridge, Colo., 4-4, 5,148, $1,400.
10, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., 2-6, 5,144, $1,300.
11, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 5-3, 5,143, $1,250.
12, Anthony Lavery-Spahr, Pasadena, Texas, 5-3, 5,106, $1,200.
13, Trevor Roberts, Crystal River, Fla., 3-5, 5,095, $1,150.
14, Josh Blanchard, Mesa, Ariz, 3-5, 5,051, $1,100.
15, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., 1-6-1, 5,000, $1,050.
16, Sam Cooley, Australia, 1-7, 4,846, $1,000.
Other Cashers (after 14 games):
17, Markus Jansson, Sweden, 3,131, $850.
18, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 3,129, $840.
19 (tie), Kris Prather, Milton, Fla., and Francois Lavoie, Canada, 3,118, $825.
21, Brad Miller, Maryland Heights, Mo., 3,109, $810.
22 (tie), Tom Daugherty, Riverview, Fla., and Dylan Burns, Lawrence, Kan., 3,107, $795.
24, n-Kyle Duster, Phoenix, Ariz., 3,104, $780.
25, Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas, 3,101, $770.
26 (tie), DJ Archer, Friendswood, Texas, and Jason Sterner, Rockledge, Fla., 3,100, $755.
28 (tie), Dom Barrett, England, and Dino Castillo, Highland Village, Texas, 3,065, $735.
30, Kyle Sherman, O'Fallon, Mo., 3,054, $720.
31, Pontus Andersson, Sweden, 3,047, $710.
32, Tyson Branagan, Fort Worth, Texas, 3,033, $705.
33, n-Peter Hellstrom, Sweden, 3,031, $700.
34 (tie), Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, and Jeff Evans, Supply, N.C., 3,023, $693.
36, Ildemaro Ruiz, Venezuela, 3,021, $685.
37, Donald Davis Jr., W. Tawakoni, Texas, 3,006, $680.
38, Stuart Williams, England, 3,000, $675.
39, Lucas Legnani, Argentina, 2,998, $670.
40, Jake Peters, Henderson, Nev., 2,995, $665.
41, n-Tyler Albracht, Amarillo, Texas, 2,978, $660.
42, Humberto Vazquez, Mexico, 2,967, $655.
43 (tie), Zulmazran Zulkifli, Malaysia,and n-Trey Sledge, Amarillo, Texas, 2,962, $648.
45, n-Sean Sadat, Houston, Texas, 2,932, $640.
46, Isaac Russell, Malaysia, 2,909, $635.
47, n-Nicholas Pate, Inver Grove Heights, Minn., 2,895, $630.
48, n-Scotty Pope Jr., Odessa, Texas, 2,860, $625.
49, Gabriel Garcia, Port St. Lucie, Fla., 2,857, $620.
50, Kenneth Harlan, Lubbock, Texas, 2,810, $615.
51, Jorge Gutierrez, Las Cruces, N.M., 2,784, $610.
52, n-John Baeten, Topeka, Kan., 2,760, $605.
53, Martin Bedford, Gasport New York, 2,752, $600.