Ryan Ciminelli surges into Rolltech PBA World Championship lead in Match Play Round 1


    2015 PBA Tour #23

    Two-time 2015 champion averages 241.5 and wins seven of his eight matches; 24-player match play field returns for second and third rounds Sunday

    2015PBARyanCiminelli.jpgCompiling a 7-1 match play record and averaging 241.5, Ryan Ciminelli (pictured left) of Cheektowaga, N.Y., surged into the lead after the first round of match play in the Rolltech PBA World Championship Saturday at the National Bowling Stadium.

    The four-time Tour winner, with two wins this season including the Bowlmor AMF U.S. Open for his first major, had games of 237, 244, 250, 238, 259, 241, 217, 246 in the first match play round.

    "This is the highest block I've had all week which has really been a boost for my confidence, said Ciminelli. "I just kept getting more and more comfortable and everything just fell into place. I need to keep riding the wave for another day.

    "To win seven matches tonight was really phenomenal," he added. "I was able to score well and win matches which is always a bonus. Going forward I think it's going to be all about winning matches. I don't think I'll need to average 240, just string strikes when I can and stay in the matches."

    Overall, after 50 games, which included the qualifying rounds of the PBA animal pattern tournaments in the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling VII presented by Silver Legacy, and today's six game cashers' round, Ciminelli led with an 11,730 overall pinfall total including bonus pins.

    2015PBAEJTackett.jpg2015PBAStuartWilliams.jpgBowling on five different PBA lane conditions – Cheetah, Viper, Chameleon, Scorpion and World Championship – he's averaging 230.4.

    "This is the most consistent I've been," Ciminelli said. "It seems like my experience in the World Series has been all or nothing, but coming in here with two wins including my first major, my confidence is still fresh."

    Trailing Ciminelli was 2013 PBA Rookie of the Year EJ Tackett (left) of Huntington, Ind., in second with 11,558 pins and a 5-3 match play record. One-time Tour winner Stuart Williams (right) of England dropped to third after holding the lead after the cashers' round, going 4-4 in match play and finishing with 11,515 pins.

    2015PBAGaryFaulkner.jpg2015PBAJakobButturff.jpgRounding out the top five were Gary Faulkner Jr. (left) of Memphis, Tenn., 6-2, and 11,471 pins and Jakob Butturff (right) of Chandler, Ariz., who had an excellent round going 7-1 in match play and finishing with 11,449 pins.

    Dom Barrett of England, who won the World Championship in October of 2013 and is the lone past champion making the top 24, finished with 11,218 moving from 22nd to 11th with the help of a 5-3 match play record.

    Seven countries are represented in World Championship match play which include England, Sweden, Canada, Denmark, Colombia, Australia and the U.S.

    The 24 match play finalists will return Sunday for two more eight-game rounds at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT which will determine the top five players for the live World Championship finals to be telecast Thursday on ESPN at 7 p.m. ET (4 p.m. PT).

    All qualifying and match play rounds of the WSOB are being covered live, exclusively by PBA's online video streaming service, Xtra Frame.


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    Rolltech PBA World Championship - Match Play Round One

    Players with position, hometown, match play record and 50-game total including bonus pins; n-denotes non-member

    1, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y., 7-1, 11,730
    2, E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 5-3, 11,558
    3, Stuart Williams, England, 4-4, 11,515
    4, Gary Faulkner Jr., Memphis, Tenn., 6-2, 11,471
    5, Jakob Butturff, Chandler, Ariz., 7-1, 11,449
    6, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 6-2, 11,443
    7 (tie), Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 4-4, and Scott Norton, Mission Viejo, Calif., 5-3, 11,401
    9, Martin Larsen, Sweden, 4-4, 11,385
    10, Matthew McNiel, Prior Lake, Minn., 5-3, 11,256
    11, Dom Barrett, England, 5-3, 11,218
    12, Patrick Girard, Canada, 3-5, 11,204
    13, Thomas Larsen, Denmark, 3-5, 11,189
    14, Bill O'Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 2-6, 11,184
    15, Andres Gomez, Colombia, 3-5, 11,175
    16, Anthony Simonsen, Princeton, Texas, 4-4, 11,158
    17, Paul Moor, England, 4-4, 11,153
    18, Eugene McCune, Munster, Ind., 1-7, 11,113
    19, Devin Bidwell, Wichita, Kan., 4-4, 11,073
    20, J.R. Raymond, Bay City, Mich., 3-4-1, 11,072
    21, Ryan Graywacz, Feeding Hills, Mass., 2-6, 11,013
    22, Sam Cooley, Australia, 2-5-1, 10,992
    23, Michael Haugen Jr., Phoenix, 3-5, 10,915
    24, n-Warren Crawford, McKinleyville, Calif., 3-5, 10,866