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Liz Johnson Wins 2017 Women’s U.S. Open for 10th Major Title

PLANO, Texas – United States Bowling Congress Hall of Famer Liz Johnson of Deerfield, Illinois, just bought a house and is in the process of permanently relocating from New York to Illinois, and she’ll now need to make some room in her new place for a couple more trophies.
The 43-year-old right-hander defeated Poland’s Daria Pajak, 188-176, to win the 2017 U.S. Women’s Open at Plano Super Bowl on Sunday, marking the fourth
consecutive time, and sixth time in her career, she has claimed the coveted green jacket.
The win, which was broadcast live on CBS Sports Network, was the record 10th major victory of her career and second of the season. She earned $20,000 for the win, and Pajak took home $10,000 for the runner-up finish.
The two-time reigning Professional Women’s Bowling Association Player of the Year, Johnson won the Go Bowling PWBA Players Championship in June and also claimed a standard PWBA title earlier in the year at the 2017 PWBA Storm Sacramento Open.
USBC Hall of Famer Marion Ladewig won the U.S. Women’s Open a record eight times, including five straight, starting with the inaugural edition in 1949.
On the way to the win Sunday, Johnson threw two doubles to stay head of Pajak, who rolled a pair perfect games and averaged more than 229 this week to earn the top seed for the championship round.
Johnson needed just two pins in her final frame to secure the win and sealed it with a six-count on her first delivery.
She now is a formal trophy presentation away from her third consecutive PWBA Player of the Year award, which is based on competition points from the 13 of the season’s 14 events.
“It’s probably cliché, but it’s a dream-come-true season,” said Johnson, who was the runner-up to Latvia’s Diana Zavjalova at the 2017 USBC Queens in May. “I never could’ve thought about winning two majors and finishing second in the third one, along with the possibility of a third player of the year, and I can’t put into words the season I’ve had. With all the talent we have out here on the Tour, to be in the position I’m in is the best feeling in the world.”
Johnson entered Sunday’s live TV finals as the No. 5 seed and defeated four talented young players to climb the ladder for the second consecutive year.
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“Climbing up the ladder always is tough, and a couple of times I thought there was no way it was going to happen,” Johnson said. “I was close early and then found my look, but in the third match, I lost my feel a little bit. I had to take a step back mentally, take some deep breaths and just focus on making better shots. It was a little more of a grind today than we saw during the week, and that’s when experience really helps. Sometimes, you have to expect the unexpected.”
Pajak was looking to become the first international player since 1982 to win the U.S. Women’s Open. Japan’s Shinobu Saitoh was the first and only other to do so, defeating USBC Hall of Famer Robin Romeo, who went on to win the event in 1989.
Pajak is in contention for the 2017 PWBA Rookie of the Year Award, which will be decided at the season-ending Smithfield PWBA Tour Championship, the fourth major on the 2017 PWBA Tour schedule and an invitation-only event that features eligible champions and the top point-earners from the current season.
The 24-year-old right-hander earned a spot in the PWBA Tour Championship with a win at the recent PWBA Greater Detroit Open, the first title of her PWBA career.
“I lost to the best bowler in the world, ever,” Pajak said. “Liz is probably – not probably, she is the best bowler in the world. I could never take advantage of the fact she was missing a little bit. I’m upset that at the time I really needed to carry, I didn’t, because I felt that could have changed the game. I don’t like losing in the ninth frame, but it is what it is.”
On the way to the seventh U.S. Women’s Open championship match of her career, Johnson needed to fill 15 pins in her final frame to get past Team USA member Erin McCarthy of Omaha, Nebraska.
Johnson left, and converted, the 3-6 combination on her first offering and then tossed a crossover strike to earn a spot in the final by a 199-195 margin.
Throughout match play this week at Plano Super Bowl, McCarthy suffered from severe back spasms and was unable to sit during the match.
She led by 26 pins after five frames, before missing a 3-10 split in the sixth frame slowed her momentum and allowed Johnson to take the lead with strikes in frames seven through nine.
The semifinal between Johnson and McCarthy was rematch of the title tilt at the 2015 Queens, where Johnson defeated McCarthy, the top seed, to win her second Queens tiara.
Prior to meeting with McCarthy, Johnson found herself down nine pins at the halfway point of her match against Canada’s Valerie Bercier, but she tossed six consecutive strikes, starting in the fifth frame, to outdistance the former University of Nebraska standout, 255-223.
The day’s opening match featured just seven strikes between the two players, but nine consecutive clean frames from Johnson to start helped her sneak past Nicole Trudell of Bridgeport, Connecticut, 191-178.
Back-to-back splits from Trudell in the seventh and eighth frames, including a 7-10 in the latter, proved to be her undoing, despite Johnson leaving, and missing, a split of her own in the final frame.
The 2017 U.S. Women’s Open started with 114 competitors, who each bowled 24 games of qualifying over three days before the field was cut to the top 38 for Friday’s eight-game cashers’ round.
The 32-game pinfall totals determined the 24 bowlers for match play, while their 56-game totals, including 30 bonus pins for each win, decided the five players for the TV show. There were 10 perfect games this week, with Pajak (two) and Johnson among them.
The championship round of the U.S. Women’s Open was one of four finals contested Sunday at Plano Super Bowl.
The finals of the 2017 PWBA Orlando Open, PWBA St. Petersburg-Clearwater Open and Nationwide PWBA Rochester Open were taped for broadcast on CBS Sports Network on Aug. 15, Aug. 22 and Aug. 29, respectively.
All qualifying and match play rounds of the 2017 U.S. Women’s Open were broadcast live on XtraFrame, the online bowling channel of the Professional Bowlers Association.
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Registration Now Open For Collegiate Expo Challenge II

As an extension of it’s premier event, The Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo, Turbo will be hosting it’s 2nd Annual Challenge Event, Sunday, October 1st at Mayflower Lanes in Redford, Michigan.  The Challenge Event is open to all high school bowlers with an opportunity to bowl in a competitive environment for valuable scholarships along with a chance to win a win FREE entry into the 2018 Collegiate Expo in Dallas, Texas next summer.

Thanks to our presenting sponsor The Frank Gavie Youth Committee additional money is added to prize fund each year which makes the Collegiate Expo Challenge one of the highest awarding and best youth events in Metro Detroit.

While MHSAA prevents the award of any prize in excess of $25 to high school athletes, all registered bowlers will receive a prize ticket where all bowlers will have equal opportunity to WIN Entry regardless of how they bowl.  Winning tickets will be pulled at random following the 6 games of qualifying where one lucky girl and one boy will selected.

Bowlers can register on-line at turbogrips.com.  Check out Collegiate Expo Challenge under the Collegiate Expo section.

Making Waves in Cleveland

Chesterfield, Michigan –  For the 7th consecutive year, Turbo Bowling Accessories hosted another successful edition of its Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo.

Collegiate Expo has become THE place for college coaches to scout talent. The event also provides a chance for high school bowlers to explore scholarship opportunities and a chance to learn from the best bowlers and instructors in the industry.

Game of Wickliffe in Wickliffe, Ohio played host from July 11-13, as nearly 200 students from 32 states, Mexico and Finland participated in the educational and competitive gathering. The event also welcomed more than 40 Collegiate coaches, the most ever to attend the Collegiate Expo.

“We can’t say enough how awesome it is to host an event like this for youth bowlers, parents and coaches,” said Lori Mraz, President of Turbo Bowling Accessories. “They inspire and invigorate us each summer with their enthusiasm and eagerness to learn about the sport.”

Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo provided both students and coaches with training from more than a dozen of the best coaches in the industry. Instructors consisted of PBA and PWBA champions, as well as USBC Silver and Gold Certified coaches. The event has also been embraced by industry experts as a showcase to provide technical information regarding their products.

“We come together once a year representing so many great brands, often time competing brands, for one primary cause, building future generations of bowlers,” said Mraz. “We’re proud of them all for taking time from their busy schedules to share their gifts and talents with the next generation of bowling super stars.”

The first two days involved instruction, both on-lane and in classroom settings. Day three  put student’s knowledge to the test in the annual Turbo Tech Audition Tournament, sponsored by Logo Infusion. The event concluded with an Open House that provided students, parents and coaches to meet and discuss college bowling programs and opportunities for scholarships.

The winners of the Audition Tournament were Paige Boyd of Lebanon, PA, and Parker Wilson of Pineville, NC (pictured above at center). Both Boyd and Wilson were awarded $350 SMART scholarships for their wins, and special awards from On The Ball Bowling.

An additional $700 was raised with a special raffle held on-site by Logo Infusion, with all proceeds going to back to the Audition Tournament scholarships fund. Carlene Beyer and Baily Gipson finished second and third respectively in the Girls Division, while Wyatt Smith and Matteo Cittadon took second and third in the Boys Division. Beyer and Smith earned $150 each for second place, while Gipson and Cittadon received $100 each for third.

Another big winner during the Collegiate Expo was Turbo’s charitable honoree, Ballard vs. The Big ‘C’ (BVBC). The group is led by PBA and USBC Hall of Famer Del Ballard, and Collegiate Expo Event Director Carolyn Dorin-Ballard.

To support the cause, a photo booth was sponsored by Columbia300, with Ebonite International staff members Jason Couch and Shannon Pluhowsky posing with nearly 200 attendees. Over $800 was raised for Ballard vs. The Big ‘C’ to continue research in cancer treatment.

“Del and Carolyn have been long time friends of Turbo for nearly two decades,” said Mraz. “It means a lot to our company and our family to give back and support to their cause.”

Mraz says that preparations are already underway for the 2018 edition. Dates have not been finalized, but Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo VIII will be held prior to the Junior Gold Championships in Dallas.

“We’ve received so many kind words and are very thankful to have the opportunity to give back to bowling in such a meaningful way,” she said. “The Collegiate Expo demonstrates our commitment to the sport and the growth of our industry.”

Sponsors for Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo VII included Ace Mitchell Bowlers Mart, Bowling Business Builders, BowlFit, Bowlers Journal International, BowlingBall.com, Brunswick, Columbia 300, Dexter, DV8, Ebonite, 900 Global, Hammer, iabowling.com, Kegel, KR Strikeforce, Logo Infusion, Motiv, On the Ball Bowling, PBA, Roto Grip, Storm, Track, Metro Detroit USBC, and Game of Wickliffe.

More Scholarships Awarded at Collegiate Expo VII

Turbo adds special on-site raffle thanks to event sponsor Logo Infusion that will be used to fund additional scholarships as part of this year’s Collegiate Expo, which will be hosted at Game of Wickliffe in Wickliffe, Ohio July 11-13, 2017.

Along with being the official jersey of the Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo, Logo Infusion will provide a professionally framed, shadow-box signed replica jersey of USBC Hall of Famer and Team Turbo staff member Carolyn Dorin-Ballard. All proceeds from the $5 raffle tickets will be designated for the 6-Game Audition Tournament held at the end of the Collegiate Expo.

“Logo Infusion has been a tremendous supporter of our event the past few years,” said Turbo President Lori Mraz. “They were very gracious last year coming up with the idea for the raffle, raising over $500 which we awarded back in scholarships.”

“We are honored to be part of such a well-run event focused on some of the most talented junior bowlers in the country,” said Ken Keegan, President of Logo Infusion. “We hope to continue our relationship with Turbo long into the future.”

“The raffle proceeds allow us to reward more players in the event,” said Mraz. “While the scholarships offered from the 6 game tournament aren’t a primary focus in our event, it is added incentive for students competing in our showcase, audition event.”

Keegan believes the raffle will definitely be bigger this year.

“This will be a collector’s item for one of the greatest female bowlers of all time,” he said.  “With Carolyn representing both Turbo and Logo Infusion around the country at numerous bowling events each year, it is fitting that we present one of her jerseys at the Collegiate Expo.”

Logo Infusion provides jerseys for both students and coaches at the Collegiate Expo. The jerseys are provided to each student based on grade level. Sophomores wear green jerseys, juniors wear blue, and seniors red, making their year of college eligibility readily known to college coaches in attendance.

“Our students love the jerseys they receive as part of their registration,” said Mraz of the estimated 200 student-athletes. “They all wear them during the Audition Tournament and the sea of color is really quite an impressive showing.”

The Audition Tournament is the culmination of two full days of on-lane and classroom instruction with some of the best coaches and professional athletes in the sport. Turbo’s team of certified coaches and professionals include PBA and PWBA Champions, Hall of Famers and USBC Certified Coaches.

Registration officially closes May 31, and spots are filling quickly for the maximum capacity of 210 players. Students should be enrolled in High School grades 10-12 for 2017-2018 school year, or be a 2017 graduate. A minimum entering average for boys of 190 and girls of 175 is suggested for greatest recruiting consideration.

Sponsors for Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo include: Bowlers Journal International, Bowlingball.com, Brunswick, Columbia 300, Dexter, DV8, Ebonite, Global 900, Hammer, International Art of Bowling, Kegel, KR Strikeforce, Logo Infusion, Motiv, OnTheBallBowling.com, PBA, Roto Grip, Storm, Track, Turbo, and the Metro Detroit USBC.

Johnson & Ciminelli to Join Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo Coaching Team

U.S. Open champions Liz Johnson and Ryan Ciminelli have been added to the coaching staff for the 2017 Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo in Cleveland on July 11-13.

Johnson, a five-time U.S. Women’s Open champion, and Ciminelli, the 2015 U.S. Open winner, are part of an extensive list of coaches and presenters at the event, which will be hosted at Game of Wickliffe, in Wickliffe, Ohio.

“I’m really looking forward to being part of the Collegiate Expo this year,” said Johnson, a USBC Hall of Famer. “The experience I had bowling in college helped develop me into the bowler I am today. I hope to share that experience and knowledge with our students.”

Both Johnson and Ciminelli are from the Buffalo, N.Y. area, and bowled collegiately before seeing professional success. Johnson was both Rookie of the Year and Collegiate Bowler of the Year at Morehead State University, while Ciminelli was a two-time National Junior College Athletic Association All-American at Erie Community College.

“Liz and Ryan bring a tremendous amount of talent and energy to the Collegiate Expo,” said Lori Mraz, President of Turbo Bowling Accessories. “Their perspectives and insight into the sport are a welcome addition to the event.”

Johnson and Ciminelli will be part of an elite group of players, coaches and industry experts gathered for the 2017 Collegiate Expo. Students will receive two full days of on-lane and classroom instruction, and will test their skills in the 6-game Audition Tournament.

The Collegiate Expo isn’t just for student-athletes. The program also includes informative seminars for High School and Collegiate Coaches lead by many of the industry’s leading experts. Coaches will also be able to interact with parents and students directly as they gather important information essential to the recruiting process.

“There’s simply no other event quite like the Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo,” said Mraz. “Having witnessed it first hand for the past six years, the team of professionals and experts we have assembled have such a powerful impact on young bowlers and their families. It’s inspiring on all levels.”

The Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo will be held prior to the USBC Junior Gold Championships. Take advantage of Early Bird Registration before March 31st to SAVE $30.  Students should be enrolled in High School grades 10-12 for 2017-2018 school year, or be a 2017 graduate. A minimum entering average for boys of 190 and girls of 175 is suggested for greatest recruiting consideration.

Sponsors for Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo include: Bowlers Journal International, Bowlingball.com, Brunswick, Columbia 300, Dexter, DV8, Ebonite, Global 900, Hammer, International Art of Bowling, Kegel, KR Strikeforce, Logo Infusion, Motiv, OnTheBallBowling.com, PBA, Roto Grip, Storm, Track, Turbo, and the Metro Detroit USBC.

Bowlers Get Chance to Win Entry into Collegiate Expo VII

Registration is now OPEN for the second annual Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo Challenge.  The Collegiate Expo Challenge is an affordable opportunity for high school bowlers to compete and earn valuable SMART scholarships (Michigan residents-points) toward college.  In addition to scholarships, ALL participating students will have the opportunity to WIN a FREE ENTRY into the 2017 Collegiate Expo where they will work with some of the best professionals and coaches in the sport.  One Entry in each the Male and Female Divisions will be awarded, a $389 value.   The Collegiate Expo Challenge is made possible through the added support and contributions of the Frank Gavie Youth Committee which provides additional funding and support to youth programs throughout the state of Michigan.   Entries are limited to 102 bowlers. On-line registration can be found under the Collegiate Expo tab on our web site.

Turbo is committed to giving back to the sport of bowling through educational programs like the Collegiate Expo and Collegiate Expo Challenge. Our Challenge event welcomed 14 Alumni students that have participated in Collegiate Expo since 2011. Help us continue to pay it forward by visiting your local retailer and asking for Turbo brand accessories.

Turbo Announces Multi-Year Sponsorship Agreement with Kegel

Turbo has announced a multiyear contract extension of its sponsorship agreement with Kegel. The agreement will position Kegel as the title sponsor of the Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo Collegiate Coaches Dinner Reception through 2020.

“Turbo and Kegel have been great friends and allies for many years,” said Turbo President Lori Mraz. “We are delighted to solidify a long-term partnership agreement with Kegel.”

The Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo debuted in 2011, and has become one of the premier events for prospective collegiate bowlers and coaches. Growing in both size and scope in each successive year, the event will attract more than 200 bowlers, high school and collegiate coaches. This year’s Collegiate Expo is scheduled for July 11-13 at Game of Wickliffe in suburban Cleveland.

“The synergy between Kegel and Turbo is a perfect fit,” said Chris Chartrand, President and CEO of Kegel. “We’ve been strategically aligned with Turbo since our existence. Kegel is extremely focused on competitive bowling and our interests are very much aligned with Turbo’s.”

As with previous agreements between Turbo and Kegel, the partnership will incorporate a number of other elements. Turbo will provide product support to Webber International University, both men’s and women’s programs, and to special events hosted by Kegel Connection Pro Shops.

The sponsorship agreement will also see the Turbo Tech Training Facility in Chesterfield, MI become one of the first to install Kegel’s new Specto Bowling System. Specto was unveiled at International Bowl Expo in 2016, and will be utilized at Turbo Tech as a coaching tool to measure all phases on ball motion on the lane.

“Specto uses Lidar technology, which is the same technology used in self-driving vehicles,” said Chartrand. “Specto’s sensors are measuring a bowler’s delivery every six inches. So not only can we measure where the ball is from the foul line to the pin deck, but also how the ball is moving through the pins.”

Bowlers will be able to see their performance evaluation from up to 35 different types of information with precision accuracy from one single shot. Users can see their performance evaluation and focus on their weak points with online tips from our coaches.

“You can compare your speed, rev rate and accuracy against the top bowlers in the world,” said Chartrand. “With Turbo Tech installing the system, we’ll be able to bring more bowlers closer to our game through instruction and innovation.”

Mraz says that with this sponsorship, Turbo and Kegel will continue together to promote bowling as a competitive and lifetime sport.

“The positive collaboration between both organizations allowed us to be comfortable expanding our sponsorship,” said Mraz. “We share similar sentiments in regards to education, improvement, and a simple passion for the sport. Kegel’s presence is a true asset to the Collegiate Expo.”

5th Annual Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo Rocks Chicago

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By any measure, Collegiate ExpoV was a smashing success!

The Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo keeps growing . . . and growing . . . and getting stronger. Each year, more student bowlers discover the merit and value that the event offers, and parents are getting tuned in to the opportunity to help their student bowlers choose the right college; especially if they have the chance to earn scholarships and be a part of a college bowling program.

Not to mention that more colleges are getting involved and becoming a part of America’s best college recruiting event. College participation at Town and Country Lanes in Joliet, Illinois July 8-10 was up from 27 last year to 36 this year; and once again, the event was sold out in advance to 168 students athletes from 27 states and two foreign countries.

Tom Falbo is the head coach at Pennsylvania’s St. Francis University. He had this to say in a note to Turbo Bowling Accessories President Lori Mraz following the event:

If there was a more appropriate way to express my appreciation for the Turbo Collegiate Expo other than saying a heartfelt thank you, I would share it with you at this time.

You’ve created such a special atmosphere and experience for these young players and their families. With life being a collection of memories, yours is such a positive experience for these kids that they can treasure for many years to come.

Your event has been such a strong resource for me and the list of high character players and families I’ve been able to recruit has been stellar.

 It’s been such a pleasure getting to know you and your staff. They really impress me how connected they are to your goals and passionate they are about what they do.”

 It is praise like that that makes Mraz and her incredible staff so proud to produce this iconic event, and it makes them more determined to keep it going and improve it every year.

Although a couple of regular coaches were unavailable because of the World Bowling Tour Tokyo event, the list was as impressive as ever. It included, Event Coordinator Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, Jeff Carter, Diandra Asbaty, Jason Couch, Lindsay Boomershine, Bob Learn Jr., Shannon Pluhowsky, Amleto Monacelli, Bill Spigner, Mike Shady, Jordan Vanover, Tim Mack, and world renowned mental coach Dr. Dean Hinitz.

Student bowlers and their parents were treated to three days of classroom and on-the-lanes instruction, and there was ample time for social interaction, casual and serious discussions with the college coaches and recruiters; not to mention technical info from the industry’s leading ball companies, and special bonuses from other sponsors; like a free jersey for every bowler from Logo Infusion, and incentives to students who downloaded the bowlers app from Rolltech during the event ending Audition Tournament.

Congrats to winners Rudolfo Monacelli and Julia Huren for winning the event. Each earned a $250 scholarship award.

It almost goes without saying that the Turbo Tech Collegiate Expo continues to be one of Bowling’s crown jewels because it gets the support and backing from great sponsors. This year, they included 900 Global, BBB Inc./Kids Bowl Free, Bowlingball.com, Brunswick, Columbia 300, DV8, Dexter, Ebonite, Hammer, IAB, Joliet Chamber of Commerce, Kegel, KR Strikeforce, Logo Infusion, Motiv, OnTheBallBowling.com, Roto Grip, Storm, Team USA, Track, Turbo, and the Metro Detroit and Chicagoland USBC.

For additional information and results, please visit the About Collegiate Expo section. For additional info on products and services offered by event sponsor Logo Infusion, visit www.logoinfusion.com. A complete listing of colleges participating in the 2015 Collegiate Expo can also be found on the Turbo website.

Belmonte Receives ESPY Award

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Congratulations to Team Turbo staff member and the two-time defending PBA Player of the Year, Jason Belmonte, on earning the Best Bowler ESPY Award for the second time during the 2015 ESPY Awards ceremony on Wednesday at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

Belmonte, who won his first ESPY Award in 2011, was among winners in a variety of sports and special moment categories that were determined by fan voting on espn.com with the winners announced during the ESPY Awards cer…emony telecast on ABC.

In 2015, Belmonte won the United States Bowling Congress Masters for an unprecedented third consecutive year and successfully defended his Barbasol PBA Tournament of Champions title for his fifth career major and boosting his career win total to 12.

Way to go mate!

Birds of a Feather Stick Together

On behalf of our entire company and legions of bowling fans worldwide, we would like to congratulate Adam Barta, Scott Pohl, Brian Walizcek, Mike Rose and Rob Gotchall on a tremendous accomplishment in winning the 2015 USBC Open Championships – Regular Team Division. Lane conditions at the Championships were especially challenging this year which is a testament to their talent and collective team effort.

Also a shout out to Matt McNiel on an amazing run of USBC accomplis

And Ronnie Sparks Jr., long time Team Turbo staff member, on earning a Regular Singles Title outdistancing himself from 35,000 bowlers with 278, 246 and 269 for a 793 series. Awesome!

We are very honored to have these gentlemen represent the Turbo brand as they exemplify our core values of excellence and continue to shine a bright light on bowling. We thank you all for your commitment and years of trust and loyalty to Turbo.

Again, our sincerest thanks and praise to all the Turbo staff representatives that participated and represented Turbo at the USBC Championships this year – Turbo President, Lori Mraz

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