In a day of major shakeups to the team leaderboard, the United States emerged as the top seed Monday for the team medal round, while Team USA’s EJ Tackett earned the all-events gold medal at the 2018 World Bowling Men’s Championships.
Team USA was the only team in the top four after the first round of qualifying to advance to the medal round at the South China Athletic Association Bowling Centre in Hong Kong.
A solid three-game block of 1,077, 1074 and 1,031 helped the United States easily take the top seed after the six games of qualifying with 6,373. EJ Tackett led the way with 1,346 and was followed by Tommy Jones (1,336), Andrew Anderson (1,242), Kyle Troup (1,214), Chris Barnes (629) and Jakob Butturff (606).
Canada, meanwhile, broke a long stretch of failing to medal in the team event by advancing in second place with 6,242. By making the medal round, Canada is guaranteed its first team event medal since it won in 1975.
Also advancing were Italy in third with 6,132 and Singapore in fourth with 6,130. First-round leader Germany, France and Indonesia dropped out of the top four after the final three games of qualifying.
In the semifinals, Team USA will take on Singapore, while Canada will face Italy in best-of-three Baker matches. The winners will meet for the gold. The medal round will be broadcast live on FloBowling for audiences in North America on Tuesday at 4 a.m. Eastern.
"The team bowled really well and competed very well as a team, even when things got a little tricky," Team USA head coach Rod Ross told BOWL.com. "This is what we train for, and to medal in the team event is what all the guys really want. But, we're only part of the way there. We got the first hurdle out of the way by qualifying for the medal round, and now we'll focus on the Baker format, and, hopefully, come away with a gold medal."
The all-events race was also determined Monday with the close of team event as Tackett earned the gold medal with a 24-game total of 5,352, a 223 average. Anderson took the silver with 5,285, while Canada’s Dan MacLelland earned the bronze with 5,277.
The Top 24 players in the all-events standings advanced to the Masters match play portion of the event, the final medals that will be earned at the 2018 World Bowling Men’s Championships.
The medal round of the Masters will be broadcast live on FloBowling for audiences in North America on Wednesday at 2 a.m. Eastern.