TEAM USA WINS TEAM AND ALL-EVENTS GOLDS AT PABCON MEN’S CHAMPIONSHIPS
GUADALAJARA, Mexico - The Team USA men overcame a close battle with Puerto Rico to claim the gold medal in the coveted five-player team event Thursday at the 2011 Pan American Bowling Confederation Men’s Championships.
The United States won the gold medal with a six-game total of 6,772, an average of 224.07, to top Puerto Rico’s 6,642 at Bolerama Tapatio. Canada took the bronze with 6,584.
Team USA’s Bill O’Neill, who won the all-events gold medal, struck on his first two shots in the final frame of the final game to shut out Puerto Rico, which still had hope with a couple players left to finish.
“The team put me in the anchor position and expected me to come up with big shots when we needed it,” said O’Neill, who won the all-events gold with a 24-game total of 5,596, an average of 233.17. “For me, throwing shots when I’ve needed them over the past year has been a bit of a struggle. So it felt really good to make some shots at the end to lock it up.”
O’Neill led the team effort with 1,398 and was followed by Mike Fagan (1,377), Patrick Allen (1,351), Chris Barnes (1,304), Walter Ray Williams Jr. (647) and Wes Malott (645).
“There’s no doubt that the talent in the American Zone has gotten stronger and that showed today,” Barnes said. “It’s always a good feeling when you get in a close situation and win. The bottom line is when it came down to the last game, we bowled well enough to pull it out while everyone was scrambling.”
Entering the final game, Canada trailed the United States by 40 pins, while Puerto Rico was 43 pins off the lead. The Canadians faded in the final game, but the Puerto Ricans held strong down the stretch and nearly pulled off the upset.
Francisco Colon led Puerto Rico with 1,376 and was followed by Andro Simounet (1,345), Israel Hernandez (1,334), Bruno Diaz (1,327) and Francisco Valient (1,260).
In the all-events race, O’Neill entered the final game down 29 pins to Canada’s Dan MacLelland, but O’Neill outscored him 249-184 in the final game. MacLelland took the silver medal with 5,560, while Colombia’s Manuel Otalora earned bronze with 5,534.
The top 16 players in the final all-events standings advanced to Friday’s match-play Masters, the final event of the PABCON Men’s Championships. All six Team USA players advanced along with four Canadians and three Puerto Ricans to make up 13 of the 16 spots.
The PABCON Men’s Championships features teams in the American Zone competing in five-player team, trios, doubles, singles, all-events and match-play Masters.
For more complete coverage of the PABCON Men’s Championships, including photos, videos, stories and results, visit BOWL.com.
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2011 PAN AMERICAN BOWLING CONFEDERATION MEN’S CHAMPIONSHIPS At Bolerama Tapaito, Guadalajara, Mexico
1, United States, 6,772. 2, Puerto Rico, 6,642. 3, Canada, 6,584. 4, Colombia, 6,401. 5, Mexico, 6,174.
1, Bill O’Neill, United States, 5,596. 2, Dan MacLelland, Canada, 5,560. 3, Manuel Otalora, Colombia, 5,534. 4, Patrick Allen, United States, 5,509. 5, Michael Schmidt, Canada, 5,411. 6, Walter Ray Williams Jr., United States, 5,403. 7, Mike Fagan, United States, 5,397. 8, Francisco Colon, Puerto Rico, 5,359. 9, Wes Malott, United States, 5,355. 10, Alejandro Reyna, Costa Rica, 5,289. Other U.S. finisher: 11, Chris Barnes, United States, 5,282.
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