Wednesday, April 25, 2012
"I'm still in shock and literally feel like I'm in a dream." ~ Diandra Asbaty
I'm not a fan of the double-elimination format employed by, among other elite bowling tournaments, the USBC Masters and USBC Queens championships. I don't like this format because it often prematurely eliminates some of the best bowlers in the tournament just because they lost their matches on a couple of pairs of lanes that favored their opponent's ball reaction at the time more than theirs or for some other reason that under-emphasized the bowler's overall level of performance throughout the tournament. I greatly favor round-robin match play as the best way to get the best or, at least, highest performing bowlers that week into the finals where they belong.
Having said that, I can't quarrel with the participants in yesterday's televised stepladder finals of the 2012 USBC Queens Championship or with the quality of their performances. Josie Earnest, who battled her way through, in the colorful words of a USBC publicist, the "Murderer's Row of staggering proportions" of Kim Terrell-Kearney, Kelly Kulick, Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, and Leanne Hulsenberg to make her first nationwide telecast, bowled an admirably solid first outing of 223. The great Liz Johnson came out firing with a 268, and then Diandra Asbaty overwhelmed her own "Murderer's Row" of Johnson, Stefanie Nation, and Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, shooting 233, 270, and 244 respectively, to win the coveted title and be crowned with the glittering tiara.
As much as I lamented Kelly Kulick's and Leanne Hulsenberg's eliminations, yesterday's finalists bowled well and deserved to make the finals. And, as usual, Dave Lamont and Chris Barnes did a top notch job of calling the action. I've said it before and I'll say again that I think Chris Barnes is the best color commentator in bowling today.
You can read more about the final results on the USBC website and view all of the televised matches below.
* Notice of correction: I originally reported that Dave Ryan was the announcer for this event when, in fact, it was Dave Lamont. Thank you Lani Chin for pointing this out. I've corrected the text accordingly.