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Bowling News USA - July 17, 2013 Storm Stars Ready For Bowling's Biggest Stage

 

Bowling's Men and Women's U.S. Open's  will kick off on July 20 at three Ohio host centers – Wayne Webb’s Columbus Bowl, Columbus Western Bowl and Holiday Lanes. The Senior Women's U.S Open begins in Columbus on July 22nd. 

In an unprecedented moment for the U.S. Open brand, a first-ever “Battle of the Sexes” U.S. Open exhibition contest will take place during the finals at this year’s competition. Announced by the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America (BPAA), following the completion of the men’s and women’s tournaments at the 2013 Bowling’s U.S. Open, the male and female champions will compete in a historic contest to crown the ultimate Open winner. 

The match will be broadcast live on ESPN immediately following the finals of Bowling’s U.S. Open, which will air at 12:00pm EDT on Saturday, July 27th. This groundbreaking match also represents the first time that a U.S. Open brand will put on a “Battle of the Sexes” event, presented by Brunswick Bowling & Billiards. 

The Storm staff members who have won the event and are competing this year make up a literal 'who's who' of U.S Open superstars.

Leading the way is Storm's Pete Weber, unquestionably bowling's most recognizable player.

Weber is coming off a PBA Tournament of Champions victory and PBA50 Senior Masters win. The Hall of Famer will be looking for his record sixth U.S Open title. Bowling insiders, including fellow Hall of Famer's Randy Pedersen and Del Ballard Jr., have been on the record as saying that Weber is currently performing better than anytime in his career.

Weber, the defending champion, has won the U.S Open in 1988, 1991, 2004, 2007 and 2012.

"I am practicing one hour a day," said Weber. 'Rich (brother and coach) is saying I look good. I am feeling really good and rested, physically and mentally, ready for bowling."

 
Weber's close friend and rival Norm Duke, will be seeking his third U.S Open title. Duke won the event in 2008 and 2011. He is tied with Weber with 37 career PBA victories.
 

 
"I am preparing now for the toughest event of the year and one that has become the pinnacle event in my mind," said Duke. "I spend a lot of time in practice on the spare game prior to the Open in order to have a degree of protection against really bad games and to lend myself some extra confidence on my strike attempts."
 
"Believing that you can spare everything really helps eleviate some of the stress the tough conditions put on you."
 
"I am in good shape, good health, my form is good and I get to take a whole lot of experience into this Open. All of that sounds good but as soon as you say your ready for the Open, it will embarrass you, so I am cautious as well."
 
On the women's side, new Storm staffer Kelly Kulick is prepared and ready to compete. Kulick is the defending champion, having won the event in 2003, 2010 and 2012.
 

 
"I am excited for many reasons," said Kulick. "It's the first competition against the women in over a year. I love the fact the women and men will be pacing side by side. The fans benefit and truly get to witness the best bowlers in the world in action. The prize fund is at an all time high for the ladies. The last time we bowled for this much money was in 2003 when Kim Terrell won it. It's the first time the competition is taking place in three different centers."
 
"This tournament has so many things going on, it's hard to miss out on the excitement. Columbus has a large league base community. Fans should be lining up out the door."
 
"I have been practicing diligently the last two weeks. I can't wait to bowl. I've had a lot of success in this event but won't take anything for granted. I will do my best and give my all. If I win, it will be another title closer to Marion Ladewig's accomplishments. It will also mean a nice payday. More importantly, it will let me know I still know how to bowl and win. I just wish there was more competition."
 
Storm's Liz Johnson is equally as prepared. Johnson will be seeking her third U.S Open title, with victories in 1996 and 2007.
 
 
"I'm definitely looking forward to this year especially since we will be bowling side by side with the men," said Johnson. "I have been bowling a lot this year. I have been bowling regionals and amateur tournaments as well as national events. I feel very confident and sharp going into Columbus."
 
"It would mean a great deal to win the Open because I have two titles already and winning a third, I know would be a rare feat. I'm just excited to bowl a major women's tournament again."
 
Leanne Hulsenberg, who recently accepted a position with Storm as Marketing Coordinator, will be seeking her second U.S Open title. Hulsenberg won the Open in 2011, on perhaps bowlings biggest stage ever. The venue that year was the NFL's Dallas Cowboys Stadium.
 
 
"My thoughts for the U.S Open are these…excitement," said Hulsenberg. "I am excited to see some of my dear friends that I only get to see a few times a year and excited to bowl in one of the few events I get to bowl in each year…the biggest tournament in bowling!"
 
"Due to my recent relocation to Utah for my new position at Storm, I am not as prepared and practiced as I have been the last two years going into this event. I have confidence that my game is in a good place and I have the best equipment. I will rely on the best ball reps for any help they can give me."
 
"What would it mean to win? Well, it would be an unbelievable honor!"
 
Storm's Tish Johnson will be competing in the Senior Women's Open. Johnson won the Women's U.S Open in 1992.
 
Other Storm staffers and personnel who have won the U.S Open include Del Ballard Jr., (1987, 1993), Tammy Turner (2009), and Carol Norman (1987).
 
Robert Smith won the event as a Storm staffer in 2000.
 
Mike Scroggins, a Storm/Roto Grip incentive player, won in 2009.
 
This year’s events have the support of title sponsor 100% Natural Lipton Iced Tea, and presenting sponsors Storm Bowling Products, Roto Grip, the Brands of Ebonite & Columbia 300, Brunswick Bowling & Billiards, and Jani-King.
 
For additional information about Bowling’s U.S. Open events, fans can visit: www.BowlingsUSOpen.com

 


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July, 2013