Jim Pinaula was not going to let another chance at a championship slip by for a second straight month as he put everything he had to come back with two wins to beat top seed Rick Torres in a best of three games 181-203, 225-220, 208-204 with handicap for the Guam Senior Bowlers Association March bowling title.
Torres led the after the four game qualifier with an 855 series with handicap followed by Pinaula with an 834. The top eight shootout round began with sixth seed Kathy Mandapat defeating eight seed veteran Buddy Saludo 205-178. In the other bracket, fifth seed John Salas won 201-172 over Pat Roberto.
The second round was the end of the road was as far as Salas and Mandapat got as third seed Mary Pangelinan ended Mandapat’s title run with a 204-188 victory while fourth seed Liz Langas stopped Salas with a narrow 183-164 to advance to the more difficult semifinals as the lower seeds must defeat the higher seeds to advance.
Pinaula again faced an uphill fight as he had to overcome Pangelinan’s high handicap with timely strikes to eke out a 193-179 win to advance to the finals. Torres on the other hand, lost to Langas 206-196 in the first game but came back with a 228-210 win to get a second showdown with Pinaula who kept him from the title round last month in the semi-finals.
Torres gave it everything he could trying to take advantage of his high handicap to beat veteran champ Pinaula by taking the first game 203-181. But the pressure and fatigue finally got to Torres with an open ninth frame in the second game that allowed Pinaula to take the second game 225-220. But Torres got his money’s worth by forcing Pinaula to put some last minute magic as all he could do was watch Pinaula string six strikes over the final four frames including a crucial double in the tenth coupled by a missed easy spare by Torres in his tenth frame to end the epic contest 208-204.
It was a very satisfying tune-up victory for Pinaula who is preparing to participate with the majority of this month’s contestants in the 13th Annual Senior Classic Tournament in Malaysia next month. He will be going with the senior team competing alongside GSBA president John Salas, vice-president Ray Manibusan, Liz Langas, Pat Roberto, Mary Pangelinan, Alex Kloulubak, Liz Salas, and several other seniors at this invitational event.
The GSBA is also putting a call out to interested seniors who wish to participate in the 15th Asia Senior Bowling Championship in Okinawa, Japan December 9th through the 18th. Bowlers interested must be 50 years of age by the time of the tournament and a current active member of the GSBA. The six qualifier events to make Senior Team Guam are currently ongoing with two events scheduled for April 8th and the 22nd. Rules for attending this event are available on the senior page at the Guam Bowling Congress web site at http://www.guambowlingcongress.com.
The next monthly tournament will be at Central Lanes on Sunday, April 29th at 11AM. Participants need to become members of the GSBA to enter. For more information call GSBA Tournament Chairperson Rick Torres at 687-4291.