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CENTREVILLE, Va. – Going up against one of the most clutch players in PBA history, Jakob Butturff showed he could be just as clutch in the first show of the 2020 PBA Playoffs.
Butturff struck out in the final frame to beat Tommy Jones, known for his clutch performances, 215-214, in a Round of 24 match at Bowlero Centreville. Also advancing on the show was Francois Lavoie, Dick Allen and Marshall Kent.
Butturff needed all three strikes after Jones struck out in the ninth and 10th frames to put maximum pressure on the young lefty. Butturff was up to the task but pulled his third shot inside. It held, however, for the winning strike.
“I think the nerves just hit me because that was my first big time on television needing a big hit in the 10th frame to lock it up,” said Butturff, who will now face top seed Jason Belmonte in the Round of 16. “I was very fortunate to get away with that last hit.”
Lavoie advanced past PBA legend Norm Duke with a 256-193 victory and will now face Sean Rash in the next round.
Surprisingly, both players missed a 10 pin in the match but Lavoie was able to throw many more strikes en route to the victory. After missing the 10 pin in the third, Lavoie strung seven strikes in a row and pulled away.
In the third match on the show, Allen took down Dom Barrett, 227-190, and advanced to bowl Anthony Simonsen in the Round of 16.
Both players struggled with going high on the left lane but Allen was able to figure it out in the back half of the game to pull away.
After leaving a four pin, 3-6-10 and 3-10 on his first three shots on the left lane, Allen didn’t miss again. Barrett’s troubles on that lane, meanwhile, came in the fourth and eighth frames when he left a 3-10 and 3-6-10.
In the second-closest match on the show, Kent escaped with a 218-212 win over Chris Via. Kent will now take on Kris Prather in the Round of 16.
The match came down to the finale frame and Via had a chance for the shutout if he could double and get seven on the fill. Instead, Via left a ringing 10 pin.
Needing just a mark to win, Kent tossed a strike and got the necessary count to advance.
The next telecast for the PBA Playoffs will be Oct. 17 at 6 p.m. Eastern on FOX (United States) and FloBowling (international).