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Matt Ogle and Sean Rash made an emotional run just to make the stepladder finals at the Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, and they didn’t stop there.
Rash and Ogle climbed the ladder as the No. 5 seed to win the title at FireLake Bowling Center in Shawnee, Oklahoma, defeating top seeds Kyle Sherman and Brad Miller, 213-200.
Bowling in the anchor spot, Ogle, a two-hander from Louisville, Kentucky, clinched the title by knocking down eight pins on his first shot in the final frame.
The victory was Rash’s 13th on the PBA Tour, while Ogle picked up his first career win, making it an emotional moment for both players.
Rash and Ogle barely advanced into the stepladder finals during the final game of round robin match play. Sitting in seventh place and outside of the cut with one game to go, the pair bowled a 279 to earn the fifth seed.
“It’s a dream come true for him, just like it was for me,” an emotional Rash said after the victory. “I’m so proud of him. He stepped up.”
After Rash left and missed the 4-7-9 in the opening frame, Ogle and Rash combined to throw four straight strikes to build a 23-pin lead after four frames. However, Sherman and Miller rattled off strikes in the fifth, sixth and seventh frames to narrow the gap.
Disaster struck in the eighth frame for Miller, however, when he missed a four pin after his team had cut the deficit to just three pins. Instead of trailing by single digits, the miss put the pair down by 16 pins.
Sherman struck in the ninth frame, setting up Miller for the final frame. Miller had a chance to strike out to force Ogle to do work in the 10th frame. Miller, however, yanked the ball inside and left a three pin on his first shot, which he made. He followed that up with a strike but Ogle only needed eight pins to get the job done.
After a spare to start in the semifinal, Rash and Ogle caught fire and threw seven consecutive strikes to defeat Sam Cooley and Anthony Lavery-Spahr, 258-216.
Cooley missed a four pin in the second frame to fall behind early but the pair tossed four strikes in a row to try and hang in the match. Rash and Ogle never backed down and put up a big score to easily advance.
In the second match of the stepladder, Rash and Ogle found themselves down by 13 after seven frames but rallied to defeat Canadians Patrick Girard and Zach Wilkins, 216-210.
There was plenty of drama in the final frame after Wilkins stepped up and struck on three shots to put all the pressure on Ogle. Needing a double and three pins, Ogle buried two perfect shots and got eight on the fill to move on.
Defending champions Jason Belmonte and Bill O’Neill got steamrolled in the opening match of the stepladder finals by Rash and Ogle, 256-172.
Belmonte and O’Neill shot themselves in the foot by leaving and failing to convert three splits in the first seven frames. Meanwhile, Rash and Ogle started with a spare before rattling off six strikes in a row to build a huge lead.
The PBA Tour resumes this week with the PBA Lubbock Sports Open starting Wednesday live on FloBowling.