A busy year for professional bowling keeps rolling right along starting Monday when the PBA50 season officially kicks off in Clearwater, Florida.
The PBA50 Johnny Petraglia BVL Open ushers in the new season for the PBA’s greatest legends with a maxed-out field of 160 players. All of the action will be broadcast live on FloBowling.
The event is named after PBA Hall of Famer Johnny Petraglia, a Vietnam vet with close ties to the Bowlers to Veterans Link (BVL) charity that raises money for veterans. All proceeds from ticket sales this week will go to the BVL.
Here are a few key points to get you ready for the BVL Open:
Haugen is the defending champion
Last year’s BVL Open was held in Farmingdale, New York, and it served as the launching pad for Michael Haugen Jr.’s run toward eventual PBA50 Player of the Year.
Haugen took down Walter Ray Williams Jr., 277-195, in the championship match to win his first title of the season. He went on to win the PBA50 River City Extreme Open to capture two titles in the 2018 campaign to go along with numerous other top finishes.
Haugen did make his return to the PBA Tour this season early on, competing in eight events but only cashed in one of them. He finished eighth in the Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship with Jakob Butturff.
Season starts with a huge field
A sold-out field of 160 players will compete in the opening PBA50 event of the season with all the big names on the roster.
Among them are all 15 players ranked in FloBowling’s PBA50 Power Rankings preseason poll, which was just released.
You can expect to see big names like PBA Hall of Famers Norm Duke, who is ranked No. 1 in the preseason rankings, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Parker Bohn III, Pete Weber, Brian Voss, Amleto Monacelli and the list goes on and on.
The format and lane condition
The tournament begins with two rounds of qualifying on Monday and Tuesday. Each round is seven games and there are two squads each day.
After 14 games of qualifying, all cashers will advance, though not all into the same round.
The top eight qualifiers after 14 games will be seeded directly into the second round of match play, while qualifiers ranked No. 9 through No. 24 will be seeded into the first round of match play.
The remaining cashers after qualifying, those ranked 25th or lower, will bowl a five-game cashers qualifying round with the top eight players from that round advancing into the first round of match play.
All pins are dropped before each round of match play. The first round of match play is five games with the eight cashers round advancers joining qualifiers ranked ninth through 24th. The top eight bowlers from this round will advance.
The second round of match play is six games with the top eight from the first round of match play joining the top eight qualifiers.
When all that is said and done, the final five will bowl in the stepladder finals on Wednesday at 7 p.m. Eastern.
As for the lane condition, the tournament will appropriately use the PBA Johnny Petraglia pattern. It’s a 37-foot pattern with 30.17 mL of oil and a ratio of 2.34:1.
How to watch
The only place to watch the PBA50 BVL Open is live on FloBowling. Every round of the event from qualifying through the stepladder finals will be broadcast live with archives available immediately after each round ends.
What the schedule looks like
Here’s the schedule for the event, all times listed are Eastern:
Monday, April 15
9 a.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad A (seven games)
2 p.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad B (seven games)
Tuesday, April 16
9 a.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad B (seven games)
2 p.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad A (seven games)
Wednesday, April 17
8:30 a.m. – Cashers Round (five games)
Noon – Match Play Round 1 (five games)
3:15 p.m. – Match Play Round 2 (six games)
7 p.m. – Stepladder Finals