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      August 21, 2001:

-San Diego Team Wins BWTC Event

08/21/2001 - Bowling Newsline
      Team Brackman of San Diego won the 12th qualifying event on the 2001 American Bowling Congress/Brunswick World Team Challenge tour Aug. 19 at Palomar Lanes in Escondido, Calif.

      Ramon Estrada, Andy Neeman, Tim Tolentino, Bob Markiewicz and Karen Smith defeated Barefoot 5 of Chino Hills, Calif., 395-323, in the two-game Baker System championship match. The victory earned Team Brackman a trip to the BWTC Grand Championship set for Nov. 5-7 in Las Vegas.

      "The key was picking up Karen at the last minute," Markiewicz said. "She led us in qualifying and was steady all weekend."

      It marked only the third time in the nine-year history of the Team Challenge that a woman has qualified for an Open Division Grand Championship as a winner of a BWTC qualifier.

      Barbara Batt of Jacksonville, Fla., qualified as part of Cassat Batt Bowl earlier this year and former touring professional Darris Hanson was the first woman to accomplish the feat in 1999.

      In addition to airfare and lodging to the Grand Championship, Team Brackman split $2,675 in cash. The group earned $800 for placing second in qualifying and added $1,050 plus an $800 bonus for its victory.

      Barefoot 5, with Rick Kouri, Troy Kendrick, Eric Schuermann, Zarcoff Boutell and Frank Barefoot, earned $1,500 for second ($675 for third in qualifying and $825 for finishing second).

      In the semi-final match Team Brackman defeated AZCA of Mesa, Ariz., 395-383, to advance to the final. AZCA, with Andrew Cain, R.J. Broege, Junior Aguayo, Carey Hofmann and Michael Haugen, earned $1,080 for third ($405 for finishing sixth in qualifying and $675 for third place).

      Other finalists among the 24 teams from four states were: 4, Palomar Lanes, Escondido, Calif., $1,600 (1st in qualifying-$1,050 + $550) 5, Team Pro Shop, Wichita, Kan., $1,025 (4th-$550 + $475); 6, Bowling Balls, Las Vegas, $880 (5th-$475 + $405). There was no Second Chance event.

      As the 2001 ABC/Brunswick World Team Challenge season enters the home stretch there are just three more chances to qualify for a trip to the Grand Championship. The next BWTC qualifier is Sept. 15-16 in Melbourne, Fla. Other qualifiers are Sept. 29-30 in Vernon Hills, Ill., and Oct. 13-14 in Mechanicsburg, Pa.

      In its ninth season, the unique Team Challenge concept combines traditional five-player team bowling with Baker System competition, in which each team member rolls two frames to create a one game score.

      Format and rules changes introduced for the Team Challenge in 2001 have enabled more teams to cash and advance to title contention than in the past. For the most part, the grassroots scratch competitors who form the heart of the Team Challenge program have embraced the 2001 changes.

      This season, approximately three out of four bowlers who have already qualified will experience their first Grand Championship compared to previous years where less than half of the qualifiers were first-time Grand Championship qualifiers.

      The 2001 format allows one in four teams to cash and advance to Baker competition, unlike previous years when 10 teams advanced regardless of the size of the original field. Other changes included limiting professional eligibility and dropping qualifying scores for teams that advanced to match play. When a field has more than 32 teams, the top four qualifying teams are seeded directly into the Baker match play finals. All other qualifying teams advance to bowl a 10-game Baker semifinal round with the top four joining the four seeded teams for the Baker final round.

      In addition to prize money and a shot at qualifying for the Grand Championship, all Team Challenge qualifiers feature brackets. Entry fee is $550 per team.

      To enter one of the remaining Team Challenge events contact Tournament Director Tom Boedecker at (800) 514-BOWL, Ext. 3415. Proprietors interested in hosting future events also should contact Boedecker.

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