Sunday, December 29, 2019 – CENTRAL LANES BOWLING CENTER, Tamuning, Guam
Tony Sobrevilla overcame the tough lane conditions at Central Lanes Sunday to defeat Jim Pinaula 190-133 and laid claim to the 2019 Guam Senior Bowlers Association (GSBA) Grand Championship and Senior Bowler of the Year crown. Third time is the charm as it was his third title of the year as he saved his best effort for last. The win entitled Sobrevilla into a prepaid entry into next year’s contest as defending champion.
After a tough five game qualifier for the sixteen Grand Finalists, the Elite Eight went into the championship shootout with the quarterfinal results as follows:
Top seed Nori Catbagan beat veteran eighth Manny Tagle 219-203. Second seed Jim Pinaula got past seventh seed Liz Salas 209-163. Fourth seed Sobrevilla opened his title quest with a 201-142 win over fifth seed Josie Catbagan. The final quarterfinal match was an all ladies battle with sixth seed Marie Velasco upsetting third seed Rose Tosco 210-190.
The semifinal matches proceeded after with Sobrevilla upsetting Nori Catbagan 183-180. Tagle ousted Nori’s wife Josie Catbagan from the top four finals 217-196. In the other bracket semi-final, Jim Pinaula beat Marie Velasco 208-189 to send him into the title match with Sobrevilla. Rose Tosco took the final semifinal match over Liz Salas 272-208.
The championship final results ended with the following:
Josie Catbagan defeated Liz Salas 219-192 to take the seventh post and drop Salas into eighth place.
In the battle for the fifth and sixth positions, Rose Tosco took the win over Manny Tagle 235-192.
Third place went to Nori Catbagan with his 223-175 victory over fourth place finisher Marie Velasco.
Tony Sobrevilla took advantage of some bad breaks to Jim Pinaula that resulted in open frames to win the title and $1,200 cash prize 190-133. Second place was not that bad for Pinaula as he got to pocket $1,000 for his hard earned efforts on Sunday.
But this was not the end of the tournament. The Elite Eight bowlers by virtue of their finish and fully paid membership in the GSBA, got a chance at a $1,000 “winner take all” bonus cash prize sponsored by the association. The competitors were treated in a special three game elimination format where the first two games used the World Tenpin scoring rules. The results of the first two games eliminated everyone except the last two competitors: Nori Catbagan and newly crowned 2019 GSBA Bowler of the Year Tony Sobrevilla. This time Catbagan unleashed a slew of strikes that resulted in a victory in the bonus round final and a $1,000 payday which he promptly handed over to his wife Josie as the two garnered the most tournament cash including side pot cash wins by Nori in the tournament.
GSBA Tournament director Manny Tagle announced that this year was the first time both the monthly and annual tournament formats resulted in the highest prize payouts in the history of the senior tournament. He hopes that the success of this year’s contest will result in more participants as the rules allowed parity between the high average and average bowlers regardless of gender. The results proved true as not only was there three women who made it to the top eight places, the top eight was fairly split between the average and above average bowlers as well.
So the upcoming 2020 senior bowling season looks bright as participation looks to increase along with the prize fund as most of the entry fees go back to the participants. The major requirement for the monthly tournaments is to be a member of the Friday Night Senior League. Joining the GSBA also makes the requirement to enter qualifiers for off island tournaments particularly the 2020 Asia Senior Bowling Championship tentatively set for late in the year in China. Interested bowlers who will be 50 by December 31, 2020 can contact Manny Tagle or the Central Lanes bowling counter for more information.