PORTLAND, Maine – For the second consecutive week, a major upset occurred at the PBA Playoffs as second seed Jakob Butturff failed to advance out of the Round of 16.
In a show that aired Monday but was taped in April, Butturff lost to No. 15 seed Wes Malott by a single pin in a tiebreaker. In the other match, Bill O’Neill defeated Jesper Svensson.
Prior to Butturff’s loss, EJ Tackett had been the highest seed knocked out. Tackett, the No. 5 seed, was also upset in the Round of 16.
Here’s a recap of both matches:
No. 15 Wes Malott 2, No. 2 Jakob Butturff 1
Malott continued to survive and advance in another match at the PBA Playoffs. After beating Josh Blanchard in the opening round while sitting on the bench, he did the same thing against Butturff.
Malott started the first game with a pair of strikes and led by 21 pins after Butturff opened in the first frame, but that lead evaporated quickly.
After that open, Butturff rattled off nine consecutive strikes to easily win the first game, 268-210.
The second game was a complete turnaround for Butturff as his ball reaction disappeared after shooting the highest game of the PBA Playoffs thus far.
Butturff started the game with back-to-back seven pin leaves and didn’t throw a double until the match was essentially out of the wood in the 10th frame.
Malott tossed a double in the fourth and fifth frames and again in the seventh and eighth frames to beat Butturff 226-193 and force the roll-off.
Malott started the ninth and 10th frame tiebreaker with a strike and in the 10th frame he pitched the ball way right and left the 1-2-4. He converted the spare and tossed a critical strike on the fill to force Butturff to throw the first one in the 10th to win.
Butturff went high in the final frame, leaving and converting a six pin. To force sudden-death overtime, Butturff needed a strike on the fill but stuffed a seven pin to lose the tiebreaker 40-39.
No. 7 Bill O’Neill 2, No. 23 Jesper Svensson 1
After three frames in his match against Svensson, it looked like it was going to be a long night for O’Neill.
O’Neill’s start to the match was a total nightmare as he missed the headpin in the first frame, leaving and making the 1-2-4-8, went high in the second frame and left and made the 6-10 and then left a 1-2-10 washout for an open in the third frame.
After three frames, O’Neill was already down 26 and looked down and out. However, he rebounded, thanks in part to a crucial Brooklyn strike, to eventually take the lead in the game, but it wasn’t enough.
Svensson just needed a mark in the final frame to win the first game, which he easily got, and took a 222-211 win.
The second game was completely different for Svensson, however, as he struggled throughout, especially down the stretch, leaving splits for opens in the seventh and eighth frames.
O’Neill hit his stride down the stretch and struck in the sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth to easily win the second game, 247-164.
That sent the match into a tiebreaker that started with Svensson going high and leaving the 2-4-7-8, which he converted.
O’Neill then stepped up and struck in the ninth and needed two strikes and one pin in the final frame for the shutout. His first shot in the 10th came up light after he tossed it way right and rolled the 2-8 combination out for a fortunate strike. He struck again and got seven on the fill to win the roll-off 57-39.
In the Round of 8, O’Neill will face Malott in a match that airs on May 27.
The final group in the Round of 16 finally take the lanes with Norm Duke facing Dom Barrett and Sean Rash taking on Kyle Sherman.
The show airs Monday at 9 p.m. Eastern on FS1 for U.S. fans and on FloBowling for international viewers.