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      September 10, 2002:

-Viewership Surge For PWBA

09/10/2002 - PWBA
      ROCKFORD, Ill. - With a growing legion of sports properties adding their telecasts to the TV guide schedule each year, the Professional Women's Bowling Association is proud to announce that it's 2002 first half TV household impressions are up 57 percent from the 2001 season The increased viewership has bumped up PWBA average household impressions from 290,000 to 456,784.

      "In an era where more and more sports are finding their way on to TV, we're thrilled our telecasts continue to improve and add new viewers," said PWBA President John Falzone. "In 21 years of existence, 17 of which we've partnered with ESPN, the PWBA has always proved how viable bowling telecasts are to the sports industry.

      With 11 PWBA tournaments already in the books, the tour has generated an overall rating of .53 compared to a .37 last season.

      Following a strong debut in May, the PWBA helped add to its bowling viewership in June with five consecutive live, Sunday telecasts that aired during mid-day on ESPN. The live telecasts averaged a .63.

      "The live shows were a huge success because when our taped broadcasts returned to ESPN2 in July, new viewers were tuning in and it showed in the ratings," said PWBA Marketing Director, Jan Schmidt. "The expanded audience has brought increased value to our sponsors and has provided additional exposure for the PWBA, it's athletes, bowling and women's sports."

      Including re-airs, the PWBA will appear on ESPN and ESPN2 combined at least 50 times this year. In addition, ESPN also plans to televise the Women's U.S. Open Bowling Championships live in December.

      The next PWBA broadcast will feature the Sport Bowling Champions Challenge on Monday, September 16 at 10 p.m. (ET). The PWBA schedule picks up its fall swing on September 15 with the start of the Three Rivers Open at Princess Lanes in Pittsburgh, Pa.

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