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WIBC Queens to kick off PWBA season in May

By PHIL GULICK

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 26, 2001


The WIBC Queens, a tournament within a tournament, opens the PWBA season May 7-11 at Sawgrass Lanes in Fort Lauderdale.

The WIBC Championship Tournament opened last week with the ninth largest field in its history and the Queens and Senior Queens events are part of that tournament. For results of both events, go to www.WIBCtournament.com.

Wendy Macpherson, the 1990s Bowler of the Decade and the PWBA's top money-winner last year, is the defending Queens champion. The field draws the best pros and amateurs in the world and is the toughest format on tour.

The scratch, double-elimination match-play format includes two, five-game qualifying blocks with the field cut to the top 25 percent for five more qualifying games. The top 63 players advance to match play, including the defending champion for a field of 64. Match play is three-game, double-elimination blocks based on total pins. A loss drops a player to the contenders bracket, and a second loss means elimination.

The undefeated match-play survivor joins the top four contenders-bracket survivors in the finals. A one-match shootout pits the third, fourth and fifth players with the winner meeting the No. 2 qualifier in the semifinal. The winner faces the winners-bracket survivor for the title. The winner earns a diamond tiara, pendant and crystal trophy.

The finals will air May 14 at 9 p.m. (taped) on ESPN2 and will be repeated May 17 at 1.

The PWBA tour moves to Fairview Heights, Ill., for the St. Clair Classic on May 12-17, second stop on the 12-stop spring-summer tour. ESPN2 will air the 23 events on Monday nights.

The PWBA southeast region tours visit Florida twice this year, Sept. 21-23 at Galaxy Lanes in Fort Myers and in October at Jacksonville's Beach Bowl for a mixed doubles event.

NEW AT THE PBA: The PBA, which does not open its season until September, added a new feature on its Web site. Go to www.pba.com/players/index.asp and select a player. Click on "click here for player stats" to get a career rundown on the selected player. It's a feature long demanded by players, media and fans. The new owners of the tour are slowly making changes to the tour and its Web site.

The PBA Senior tour opens May 6 with the Greater Syracuse Senior Open at Liverpool, N.Y.

FSU JUST MISSES: The Florida State men's team nearly won the Intercollegiate Championship. Western Illinois rallied from a two-game deficit to beat the Seminoles for the title at Grand Rapids, Mich., last week. The Seminoles had the Leathernecks down three games to one, but were shut out the next three Baker match-play games and lost 4-3. FSU's Anthony Corrao was named to the all-tournament team.

The Nebraska-Lincoln women's team also won a championship. The FSU women were eliminated early.

- Phil Gulick can be reached at xerxes6@aol.com or xerxes6@juno.com.

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