Indiana’s E.J. Tackett Wins DHC PBA Japan Invitational Title to Kick Off 2017 Season

No. 5 qualifier climbs stepladder, topples Japan’s Shota Kawazoe for sixth career title

OSAKA, Japan (Jan. 14, 2017) – E.J. Tackett of Huntington, Ind., went on a strike binge early Saturday at Bentencho Grandbowl, sweeping his four stepladder matches including a 259-216 victory over top  qualifier Shota Kawazoe of Japan, to win his sixth career Professional Bowlers Association Tour title in the DHC PBA Japan Invitational.
 
Tackett, who is currently a leading contender for 2016 GEICO Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year, entered the finals as the no. 5 qualifier and defeated Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas, 257-205; Sean Rash of Montgomery, Ill., 259-256, and Jason Sterner of Cocoa, Fla., 235-191, to advance to the title match.
 
The entire tournament was covered live on PBA’s video streaming service, Xtra Frame.
 
Tackett, who won four titles in 2016 including his first major in the end-of-season PBA World Championship, bowled his third 300 game of the tournament on Friday to sneak into the stepladder finals by 10 pins. He began his march to the title on Saturday by throwing a string of six strikes in eliminating Barnes, the 2015 DHC PBA Japan Invitational winner.
 
In the second match, Rash started with six strikes before converting three consecutive single-pin spares. Tackett, after converting two 10 pins early in the match, reeled off seven consecutive strikes to overtake Rash. His seventh strike on his first shot in the 10th frame locked up the win.
 
A pair of three-strike strings were enough to dispatch Sterner, who didn’t throw back-to-back strikes until the 10th frame, and a string of seven strikes against Kawazoe was more than enough to  hold off the Japan PBA star who led the field by 401 pins heading into the championship round.
 
Along with his title in the PBA’s first tournament of 2017, Tackett earned $43,800.
 
Next up for the PBA is the State Farm Chris Paul PBA Celebrity Invitational at Lucky Strike LA Live in Los Angeles Tuesday, where Tackett, Barnes, Rash, Tommy Jones and Pete Weber will join the host and Los Angeles Clippers and Boston Red Sox star Mookie Betts among others in a special event to benefit the Chris Paul Family Foundation. The show will air on ESPN on Friday, Feb. 17 at 9 p.m. ET as part of the NBA All-Star weekend, followed by the PBA Super Clash presented by Main Event in Katy, Texas, live on ESPN on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 5, at 2 p.m. ET.
 
PBA Tour competition resumes with a “Super February” lineup of back-to-back-to-back major championships, all of which will air live on ESPN. The series includes the Barbasol PBA Players Championship from Wayne Webb’s Columbus Bowl, Feb. 7-12; the FireLake PBA Tournament of Champions from FireLake Bowling Center and FireLake Arena, Feb. 14-19, and the United States Bowling Congress Masters from The Orleans Bowling Center, Feb. 21-26. All three finals air on Sundays at 1 p.m. ET, and preliminary rounds of all three will be live streamed on Xtra Frame.
  
Xtra Frame subscriptions are available in a variety of packages: three-day ($3.99), 30-day ($7.99) and Xtra Frame Season Ticket (a full-year’s coverage at an average cost of $1.25 per week). Subscriptions are available by visiting xtraframe.tv and clicking on the “subscribe now” link.
 
DHC PBA JAPAN INVITATIONAL
Bentencho Grandbowl, Osaka, Japan, Saturday
 
Final Standings
1, E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Ind., $43,800.
2, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, $21,750.
3, Jason Sterner, Cocoa, Fla., $11,410.
4, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., $8,700.
5, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, $7,830.
 
Stepladder Results
Match One – Tackett def. Barnes, 257-205.
Match Two – Tackett def. Rash, 259-256.
Semifinal Match – Tackett def. Sterner, 235-191.
Championship – Tackett def. Kawazoe, 259-216.

OSAKA, Japan (Jan. 13, 2017) – Shota Kawazoe, a 28-year-old Japan Professional Bowlers Association veteran, maintained his blistering 247 scoring average while winning 24 of his 32 matches to claim the top berth in the DHC PBA Japan Invitational stepladder finals Friday at Bentencho Grandbowl in Osaka.

 
Kawazoe finished fifth in the 2016 DHC event for his best finish in PBA competition. He will bowl for the $40,000 first prize and a PBA Tour title against the survivor of three preliminary matches involving American PBA Tour champions – Jason Sterner of Cocoa, Fla.; Sean Rash of Montgomery, Ill.; Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas, and E.J. Tackett of Huntington, Ind. The PBA will provide live streaming coverage of the DHC finals on Xtra Frame starting at roughly 10:20 p.m. EST (9:20 p.m. CST, 7:20 p.m. PST) on Friday.
 
Kawazoe has dominated the PBA Tour’s first tournament of 2017, winning the top berth in the stepladder finals by 401 pins over Sterner. Rash and Barnes – the 2015 DHC PBA Japan Invitational winner – made big moves in the final round to claim the third and fourth spots in the finals. Barnes will meet Tackett, who rolled his third 300 game of the tournament Friday to claim the fifth spot in the finals by 10 pins over Sweden’s Jesper Svensson.
 
Xtra Frame subscriptions are available in a variety of packages: three-day ($3.99), 30-day ($7.99) and Xtra Frame Season Ticket (a full-year’s coverage at an average cost of $1.25 per week). Subscriptions are available by visiting “xtraframe.tv” and clicking on the “subscribe now” link.
 
For fans who prefer a more convenient time to watch, each XF segment from Japan will be available on demand in Xtra Frame’s “What’s New” section within approximately an hour of the live stream, and in the XF archives shortly thereafter.
 
DHC PBA JAPAN INVITATIONAL
Bentencho Grandbowl, Osaka, Japan, Friday
 
Final Match Play Standings (after 32 games, including match play bonus pins. Top five after 32 games advance to stepladder finals):
1, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 24-8, 8,642.
2, Jason Sterner, Cocoa, Fla., 22-10, 8,241, $100.

3, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 22-10, 8,234.

4, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 18-12-2, 8,155.

5, E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 17-14-1, 8,138, $300.

Failed to advance:
6, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, 20-11-1, 8,128, $5,220.
7, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 16-16, 8,085, $4,885.

8, Dom Barrett, England, 17-14-1, 8,021, $4,350.

9, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 21-11, 8,012, $3,915.

10, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 19-12-1, 7,979, $3,655.

11, Tom Daugherty, Tampa, Fla., 14-15-3, 7,954, $3,305.

12, Josh Blanchard, Gilbert, Ariz., 18-14, 7,890, $3,130.

13, Takahiro Sato, Japan, 20-11-1, 7,865, $2,960.

14, w-Hiromi Matsunaga, Japan, 17-15, 7,845, $2,785.

15, Choi Won Young, Korea, 18-13-1, 7,833, $2,710.

16, Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 15-17, 7,800, $2,435.

17, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 16-14-2, 7,780, $2,390.

18, Makoto Endo, Japan, 16-15-1, 7,776, $2,350.

19, Kristopher Prather, Milton, Fla., 19-12-1, 7,751, $2,305.

20, Isao Yamamoto, Japan, 15-17, 7,746, $2,260.

21, Masaki Noda, Japan, 16-15-1, 7,642, $2,220.

22, w-Urara Himeji, Japan, 17-14-1, 7,552, $2,175.

23, Shuichi Heki, Japan, 12-19-1, 7,505, $2,130.

24, w-Hiroko Shimizu, Japan, 14-18, 7,458, $2,090.

25, Yuki Mizumoto, Japan, 12-18-2, 7,448, $2,045.

26, w-Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., 12-20, 7,429, $2,000.

27, w-Yuki Akiyoshi, Japan, 12-20, 7,387, $1,960.

28, Ryogo Tsurumi, Japan, 14-18, 7,257, $1,915.

29, w-Mari Kimura, Japan, 12-20, 7,223, $1,870.

30, Masato Sakakibara, Japan, 8-24, 6,933, $1,830.

31, w-Manae Kameshima, Japan, 5-27, 6,459, $1,785.

32, Junichi Uesaka, Japan, 4-28, 6,333, $1,740.
 
300 Games: E.J. Tackett 3, Choi Won Young, Jason Sterner.

OSAKA, Japan (Jan. 12, 2017) – Shota Kawazoe, a 28-year-old Japan Professional Bowlers Association veteran, averaged 247 while winning 12 of his first 16 matches, to take a 58-pin lead over 2016 PBA World Champion E.J. Tackett of Huntington, Ind., after two rounds of the DHC PBA Japan Invitational Thursday at Bentencho Grandbowl in Osaka.
 
Kawazoe, who is bowling in his 17th PBA Tour event, finished fifth in the 2016 DHC event for his highest finish in PBA competition. He completed the second round of the 32-game round robin match play preliminaries with 4,316 pins, including match play bonus pins, to take the lead over Tackett, who rolled a pair of 300 games on his way to an 11-5 match play record and 4,258 total pins.
 
Heading into Friday’s final two eight-game match play rounds, Jason Sterner of Cocoa, Fla., was in third place with 4,241 pins followed by Tommy Jones of Simpsonville, S.C., at 4,175 and Korean PBA member Choi Won Young with 4,100 pins. The top five players after Friday’s final two rounds will advance to Saturday’s stepladder finals to compete for the $40,000 first prize.
 
The PBA is providing live coverage of the DHC PBA Japan Invitational on its video streaming service, Xtra Frame. Match play rounds three and four will air at 9 p.m. EST on Thursday and 2 a.m. Friday; followed by the five-player stepladder finals at 10:20 p.m. Friday.
 
For fans who prefer a more convenient time to watch, each XF segment from Japan will be available on demand in Xtra Frame’s “What’s New” section within approximately an hour of the live stream, and in the XF archives shortly thereafter.
 
Xtra Frame subscriptions are available in a variety of packages: three-day ($3.99), 30-day ($7.99) and Xtra Frame Season Ticket (a full-year’s coverage at an average cost of $1.25 per week). Subscriptions are available by visiting “xtraframe.tv” and clicking on the “subscribe now” link. New monthly or Season Ticket subscribers are automatically entered into PBA’s monthly sweepstakes where they have chances to win a new high-performance bowling ball from Brunswick, DV8 or MOTIV.
 
DHC PBA JAPAN INVITATIONAL
Bentencho Grandbowl, Osaka, Japan, Thursday
 
Second Round Standings (after 16 games, including match play bonus pins. Top five after 32 games advance to stepladder finals):
1, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 12-4, 4,316.
2, E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 11-5, 4,258.

3, Jason Sterner, Cocoa, Fla., 12-4, 4,241.

4, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 11-5, 4,175.

5, Choi Won Young, Korea, 9-6-1, 4,100.

6, Takahiro Sato, Japan, 13-3, 4,008.

7, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 9-7, 3,984.

8, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 9-7, 3,981.

9, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 9-6-1, 3,975.

10, Dom Barrett, England, 9-7, 3,971.

11, Yuki Mizumoto, Japan, 9-6-1, 3,968.

12, Josh Blanchard, Gilbert, Ariz., 8-8, 3,957.

13, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, 8-8, 3,942.

14, Amleto Monacelli, Venezuela, 8-8, 3,939.

15, Tom Daugherty, Tampa, Fla., 7-9, 3,938.

16, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 7-8-1, 3,911.

17, Kristopher Prather, Milton, Fla., 9-6-1, 3,909.

18, Makoto Endo, Japan, 10-6, 3,907.

19, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 9-7, 3,854.

20, w-Hiromi Matsunaga, Japan, 8-8, 3,840.

21, w-Urara Himeji, Japan, 8-8, 3,787.

22, w-Hiroko Shimizu, Japan, 7-9, 3,779.

23, Masaki Noda, Japan, 6-9-1, 3,775.

24, Shuichi Heki, Japan, 6-10, 3,765.

25, Ryogo Tsurumi, Japan, 8-8, 3,750.

26, w-Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., 6-10, 3,710.

27, Isao Yamamoto, Japan, 4-12, 3,540.

28, Masato Sakakibara, Japan, 5-11, 3,537.

29, w-Mari Kimura, Japan, 6-10, 3,534.

30, w-Yuki Akiyoshi, Japan, 4-12, 3,455.

31, w-Manae Kameshima, Japan, 5-11, 3,407.

32, Junichi Uesaka, Japan, 1-15, 3,073.
 
300 Games: E.J. Tackett 2, Choi Won Young.

 

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