Defending champion and PBA Hall of Famer Mika Koivuniemi held onto his lead Tuesday after the second round of qualifying at the 2019 PBA Suncoast Senior U.S. Open but Pete Weber is lurking.
Koivuniemi, who also led after the first round, has a 12-game total of 2,781, a 231.75 average, to lead the field of 150 players at the halfway point of qualifying at Suncoast in Las Vegas.
A day after putting up a massive 1,465 six-game block on the burn, Koivuniemi shot 1,316 on the fresh with games of 243, 223, 174, 210, 276 and 190. He holds a commanding 166-pin lead over Brian Kretzer, who is second with 2,615.
Weber, a PBA Hall of Famer, made a big move in the second round, jumping into a tie for third place along with Tore Torgersen, with 2,602. Weber shot 1,241 in Monday’s opening round and put up a blistering 1,361 despite starting the second round with a 187 game.
Weber, who was in 31st place after the first round, has bowled in three PBA50 Tour events leading up to the Senior U.S. Open with a high finish of 21st at the PBA50 Johnny Petraglia BVL Open. He finished 25th at the PBA50 National Championship, the first major of the PBA50 season.
Plenty of other PBA Hall of Famers and big names are among the top 20 at the halfway point of qualifying.
Among the highlights are 2018 PBA50 Player of the Year Michael Haugen Jr. in sixth place, 2019 USBC Senior Masters champion Amleto Monacelli in 11th place and Norm Duke, who has made the stepladder finals in every PBA50 event he’s bowled in this season, in 17th place.
The top 38 players after 24 games of qualifying will advance into match play on Friday with the event’s stepladder finals scheduled for 4:15 p.m. Pacific on Friday. All rounds of the event are being broadcast live exclusively on FloBowling.
A big surprise is a player who is not inside the cut number with 12 games to go. Walter Ray Williams Jr., who has dominated the PBA50 Tour this season, has struggled thus far in qualifying and sits in 59th place with 2,372, a 197.67 average. He’s currently 28 pins outside the cut.