Page, Earnest Lead Opening Day at 2016 Team USA Trials

by Gianmarc Manzione 0

By Aaron Smith
USBC Communications

RhinoJosie

LAS VEGAS - Rhino Page of Orlando, Fla., and Josie Earnest of Nashville, Tenn., lead after the opening round at the 2016 United States Bowling Congress Team USA Trials on Sunday.

Page, a three-time Professional Bowlers Association Tour champion, put together games of 249, 234, 229, 279, 245 and 225 to lead on the men's side with a 1,461 total, a 243.5 average. Earnest, a three-time Team USA member, rolled 210, 220, 234, 259, 247 and 247 to set the pace for the women at Gold Coast Hotel and Casino with 1,417 (236.17 average).

The players in the field earn points based on their finishing position in each of the qualifying rounds - the top bowler of the block earns one ranking point, second place in the block earns two points, etc. - with the lowest total of ranking points after the five six-game blocks determining the qualifying leaders. Page and Earnest each earned one point for leading the first round.

The confidence was high for Page entering Sunday's opening round, knowing his ball reaction looked good on the 37-foot Melbourne pattern.

"It feels great to get out to a good start," said Page, a seven-time Team USA member and the 2005 U.S. Amateur champion. "I really liked my ball reaction on this pattern, and when I found out this was the pattern we were going to start on, I came in very motivated and stayed patient. With everything we've had to bowl in the last couple of months, I'm very tournament sharp. I'm in the right spot as far as mentally and physically, so I'm excited about this week."

Joining Page at the top of the men's standings were 2015 Team USA Trials champion, Kamron Doyle of Brentwood, Tenn., who finished second with 1,417. Kenneth Ryan of Farmingdale, N.J., placed third with 1,414, Jeff Fehr of Cincinnati was fourth with 1,413, and A.J. Chapman of Manchester, Iowa, finished fifth with 1,410.

Earnest was excited to get out of the gates strong but is treating each day like a new tournament.

"The cool thing about this tournament is that each day is its own tournament," said Earnest, who also spent five years on Junior Team USA. "A great first day really helps, but I know there's a lot of bowling left. Team USA has been a part of my life for the better part of 10 years, so I want to do well and I really hope my week ends by making the team."

Haley Richard of Tipton, Mich., is second on the women's side with 1,410, Stefanie Johnson of Grand Prairie, Texas, is third with 1,367, and Ashley Dunn of Palmdale, Calif., is fourth with 1,346. Lauren Hoffman of Monroe Township, N.J., caps off the top five with 1,342, which included Sunday's only perfect game.

The United States National Amateur Bowling Championships returns as part of the 2016 Team USA Trials. The top three amateur men and top three amateur women will advance to a stepladder final after the final round of qualifying, which will determine the U.S. Amateur champions. The winners also will earn a spot on Team USA.

The top three amateurs on the men's side are Doyle (two ranking points), Ryan (three points) and Fehr (four points). For the women, Richard (two points), Dunn (four points) and Hoffman (five points) have the early lead.

Competition continues Monday at 11 a.m. Eastern with the second round of women's qualifying. BOWL.com's BowlTV will provide wire-to-wire coverage of the event.

A minimum of 12 men and 12 women will join Team USA for 2016. The top four men and top four women at the 2016 Team USA Trials, based on ranking points, automatically will earn spots, while two additional men and two additional women will be selected by the National Selection Committee from the field of players that competed this week.

The National Selection Committee also will select a maximum of five men and five women for the team based on resumes submitted by Team USA or Junior Team USA members from the last 10 years or the top 25 on the points list of the 2014-2015 PBA Tour and 2015 Professional Women's Bowling Association (PWBA) Tour.

On the youth side, Junior Team USA 2016 will consist of 12 boys and 12 girls. The top four boys and top four girls at the 2016 Team USA Trials, based on ranking points, automatically will earn spots, while two additional boys and two additional girls will be selected by the National Selection Committee from either the 2016 Team USA Trials or 2015 Junior Gold Championships.

They will join the six boys and six girls who already earned their spots on Junior Team USA 2016 by qualifying at the 2015 Junior Gold Championships in Chicago.

To be eligible for the U.S. Amateur portion of the event, a bowler must not hold or have held a professional membership (PBA or PWBA) anytime in 2015. Also, anyone who has won a professional title (regional, national or senior) as a professional is not eligible to compete as an amateur.

For more information on the USBC Team USA Trials and U.S. Amateur, visit BOWL.com/TeamUSATrials.

2016 USBC Team USA Trials
At Gold Coast Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas

ROUND 1 - TOP 20
(Position, name, hometown, six-game total)

MEN

1, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 1,461.
2, Kamron Doyle, Brentwood, Tenn., 1,417.
3, Kenneth Ryan, Farmingdale, N.J., 1,414.
4, Jeff Fehr, Cincinnati, 1,413.
5, AJ Chapman, Manchester, Iowa, 1,410.
6, Brad Miller, Maryland Heights, Mo., 1,389.
T7, Anthony Simonsen, Princeton, Texas, 1,374.
T7, Andrew Cain, Phoenix, 1,374.
9, Michael Martell, Brooklyn, N.Y., 1,373.
10, Jordan Nunn, Flint, Mich., 1,366.
11, Wesley Low Jr., Palmdale, Calif., 1,354.
12, Rob Gotchall, Clarksville, Tenn., 1,343.
13, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 1,327.
14, Anthony Naujokas, Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y., 1,326.
15, Dustin Zehner, South Bend, Ind., 1,325.
T16, Luke Fisher, Altoona, Iowa, 1,322.
T16, Darren Stanley, Vancouver, Wash., 1,322.
18, Michael Tang, San Francisco, 1,319.
19, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 1,314.
20, Matt Russo, Millstone Township, N.J., 1,306.

WOMEN

1, Josie Earnest, Nashville, Tenn., 1,417.
2, Haley Richard, Tipton, Mich., 1,410.
3, Stefanie Johnson, Grand Prairie, Texas, 1,367.
4, Ashley Dunn, Palmdale, Calif., 1,346.
5, Lauren Hoffman, Monroe Township, N.J., 1,342.
6, Amanda Greene, Romney, W.V., 1,306.
7, Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., 1,293.
8, Taylor Bulthuis, Coral Springs, Fla., 1,292.
9, Jordan Richard, Tipton, Mich., 1,291.
10, Ashlyn Herzberg, Wichita, Kan., 1,283.
11, Emily Notebaert, Rochester, N.Y., 1,281.
12, Katherine Sutphin, Maitland, Fla., 1,279.
13, Ashly Galante, Palm Harbor, Fla., 1,276.
14, Robyn Renslow, Brentwood, Calif., 1,264.
15, Stephanie Cieslewicz, Amherst, Wis., 1,262.
16, Haley Cummings, Huber Heights, Ohio, 1,251.
17, Shannon O'Keefe, O'Fallon, Ill., 1,249.
18, Bryanna Cote, Red Rock, Ariz., 1,248.
19, Kelly Kulick, Union, N.J., 1,243.
20, Kalyn Washburn, Tucson, Ariz., 1,241.

OVERALL - TOP 20
(Position, name, hometown, total points. Points based on finishing position in each round.)

MEN

1, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 1.
2, Kamron Doyle, Brentwood, Tenn., 2.
3, Kenneth Ryan, Farmingdale, N.J., 3.
4, Jeff Fehr, Cincinnati, 4.
5, AJ Chapman, Manchester, Iowa, 5.
6, Brad Miller, Maryland Heights, Mo., 6.
T7, Anthony Simonsen, Princeton, Texas, 7.
T7, Andrew Cain, Phoenix, 7.
9, Michael Martell, Brooklyn, N.Y., 9.
10, Jordan Nunn, Flint, Mich., 10.
11, Wesley Low Jr., Palmdale, Calif., 11.
12, Rob Gotchall, Clarksville, Tenn., 12.
13, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 13.
14, Anthony Naujokas, Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y., 14.
15, Dustin Zehner, South Bend, Ind., 15.
T16, Luke Fisher, Altoona, Iowa, 16.
T16, Darren Stanley, Vancouver, Wash., 16.
18, Michael Tang, San Francisco, 18.
19, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 19.
20, Matt Russo, Millstone Township, N.J., 20.

WOMEN

1, Josie Earnest, Nashville, Tenn., 1.
2, Haley Richard, Tipton, Mich., 2.
3, Stefanie Johnson, Grand Prairie, Texas, 3.
4, Ashley Dunn, Palmdale, Calif., 4.
5, Lauren Hoffman, Monroe Township, N.J., 5.
6, Amanda Greene, Romney, W.V., 6.
7, Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., 7.
8, Taylor Bulthuis, Coral Springs, Fla., 8.
9, Jordan Richard, Tipton, Mich., 9.
10, Ashlyn Herzberg, Wichita, Kan., 10.
11, Emily Notebaert, Rochester, N.Y., 11.
12, Katherine Sutphin, Maitland, Fla., 12.
13, Ashly Galante, Palm Harbor, Fla., 13.
14, Robyn Renslow, Brentwood, Calif., 14.
15, Stephanie Cieslewicz, Amherst, Wis., 15.
16, Haley Cummings, Huber Heights, Ohio, 16.
17, Shannon O'Keefe, O'Fallon, Ill., 17.
18, Bryanna Cote, Red Rock, Ariz., 18.
19, Kelly Kulick, Union, N.J., 19.
20, Kalyn Washburn, Tucson, Ariz., 20.

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