WILMINGTON, N.C. – The Professional Bowlers Association’s Xtra Frame Storm Cup Tour will make its first visit to Wilmington over Memorial Day weekend when a sold-out field of established PBA champions, future stars and top-caliber amateur bowlers compete in the PBA Xtra Frame Wilmington Open at Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center.
A capacity field of 96 players is will compete in the second event of the seven-tournament XF Storm Cup series that will pay $50,000 in bonus prize money at the conclusion of the 2017 series. Leading the Storm Cup points race after one event is Josh Blanchard of Mesa, Ariz., who earned 25 points for his win in the Xtra Frame Reality Check Classic in Tamarac, Fla., in March. Trailing Blanchard are Tamarac runner-up AJ Johnson of Oswego, Ill.; Dom Barrett of England; Shawn Maldonado of Houston, Texas, and Dick Allen of Columbia, S.C. All except Maldonado are entered in Wilmington.
All of the XF Storm Cup tournaments will be covered live, from first ball to last, by PBA’s Xtra Frame live streaming service. PBA created the online Xtra Frame Tour in 2014 to supplement its national television coverage on ESPN and the CBS Sports network and to enable more fans throughout the country to see the world’s greatest bowlers compete for a PBA Tour title in person.
In addition to the Storm Cup points leaders, entrants in Wilmington include PBA Tour champions Ryan Ciminelli, Tom Daugherty, Graham Fach, Tommy Jones, Marshall Kent, Bill O’Neill, Rhino Page, Connor Pickford, Sean Rash, Anthony Simonsen, Jason Sterner, reigning PBA Player of the Year EJ Tackett and North Carolina native Kyle Troup.
Competition begins on Saturday, May 27 with six-game qualifying squads at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. ET. After a second qualifying round Sunday at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m., the top 16 players will advance to a modified 12-game round robin match play round Monday at 9 a.m. The top four players after 24 games will advance to the stepladder finals at 3 p.m. Monday to compete for a $10,000 first prize and a PBA Tour title.
A practice session is scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday and a pro-am where grassroots amateur bowlers can bowl with the pros will be conducted at 7 p.m. For tournament pro-am and admission information contact Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center at (910) 452-5455.
For Xtra Frame subscriptions, visit xtraframe.tv. Subscriptions are available for three days ($3.99), 30 days ($7.99) or for a full year at a cost of about $1.25 per week.
PBA XTRA FRAME WILMINGTON OPEN
Ten Pin Alley Family Fun Center, Wilmington, N.C. (All times Eastern)
Friday, May 26
1 p.m. - Practice Session
3:30 p.m. – New player orientation meeting
7 p.m. - Pro-am
Saturday, May 27
9 a.m. - A Squad, six qualifying games
2 p.m. - B Squad, six qualifying games
Sunday, May 28
9 a.m. – Squad B, six qualifying games
2 p.m. – Squad A, six qualifying games
Top 16 after 12 games advance to match play
Monday, May 29
9 a.m. – Top 16, 12 games modified round robin match play
Top four after 24 games advance to stepladder finals
3 p.m. – Top four stepladder finals
PBA XTRA FRAME STORM CUP POINTS LEADERS
(After one of seven events; 25 points to winner, 19 to second place, 18 to third, etc. through 20th place)
1, Josh Blanchard, 25; 2, AJ Johnson, 19; 3, Dom Barrett, 18; 4, Shawn Maldonado, 17; 5, Dick Allen, 16; 6, Ildemaro Ruiz, 15; 7, Tom Daugherty, 14; 8, Chris Spoo, 13; 9, Walter Ray Williams Jr., 12; 10, Jeff Piroozshad, 11; 11, Chris Loschetter, 10; 12, Cristian Azcona, 9; 13, Ryan Ciminelli, 7; 14, Michael Azcarate, 5 ; 15, DJ Archer, 4; 16, Brad Miller, 2; 18, Darren Tang, 1.