The stars have come out in Las Vegas this weekend with the Coach K Scholarship Open bringing some of the best bowlers in the world to the Gold Coast Casino bowling center. Everyone from a 2 time major champion, to the west coasts best will battle it out for a CB TOUR Title. Story lines range from Alex having an opportunity to clinch the CB TOUR points championship, to our first look at Sean Rash and Darren Tang on the CB TOUR. Season 1 has been a major success and as we head into the 2nd half we get to see what the CB TOUR represents. Excitement, Competition, and Community. These are the pillars we are building the future on. This weekend we bring the excitement and competition to our amazing community with this star studded field. Let's break down where the top 10 will be.
10. Tommie McNeal - Tommie is set to bowl his first CB TOUR event this weekend. The first time I saw him was at the Thunder egg on the Storm Northwest Tour where he took home the win over Alex Hoskins. Tommie throws the ball damn good, and his look was unbeatable at Westy’s. Now we will see how he fares against some of the world's best and a much different format. Get to the bracket and hang on. Tommie McNeal is here and he is ready to show the CB TOUR what he can do.
9. Kyle Morrison - Kyle is 2nd in points right now and has the best chance at giving Alex a run for his money. Kyle has been as consistent as it gets other than Alex going T9 at the RIGC and 4th at the CB Masters. I am really looking forward to seeing if Kyle can break through and bowl for a title this weekend. Kyle should match up great to this pattern with his ball roll and if anyone has a chance to give Alex a run for his money in the points, it's Kyle.
8. Dallas Leong - Dallas returns to the CB TOUR after an absence from the TOUR’s lone major. Dallas finished 3rd at the RIGC but with a 0 at the Masters he has fallen quite a bit behind in the points. He will need a solid finish this week to crack the top 16, but with quite a few of the current points leaders missing this weekend's action, there's a lot of places up for grabs. Dallas has quite a bit of experience in this center and that should help him get into the bracket. I’m looking for Dallas to make another deep run in the CB TOUR bracket.
7. Jake Peters - Jake makes his debut in the CB TOUR this weekend though this is not the first time we have seen Jake bowl. Jake begins our list of some of the world’s best bowlers and has all the talent and accolades to back it up. This is where things get exciting as the format makes it where we get to see these guys battle it out head to head. I see all of these guys making the bracket so I’m just excited to see how it all unfolds.
6. Sean Rash - Sean will tell you this is far too low for someone with 17 national titles, 2 majors and a player of the year. I say this is a bit high for someone who got beat 715 to 713 in league by a 2 hander slinging thane on house! At any rate Sean is a world class bowler and there's just a ton of bowlers in here that have a lot of experience in this format and in that center. Will Sean make the top 8? Most likely. Will he win? Well, if the past has shown us anything, it’s that anything can happen in the bracket.
5. Darren Tang - Darren is also making his CB TOUR debut, and he will get a taste of what we are all about. He has a ton of experience in this center, and a little with formats where the lanes break down crazy and the pattern plays a bit different every squad. Really at this point it comes down the bracket and whether he can sneak out those close wins. Will his draw be tough? Will he catch the top in the cashers round and get a bye. All these things will come down to less than 10 pins. We have yet to really see anyone get blown out in matches and Darren is going to have the CB TOUR’s toughest fields to navigate.
4. Kendle Miles - Kendle is on a white hot streak of making step ladders and bowling really really well. Unfortunately he faced Alex in the finals at the CB Masters, and Gio who went on a tear at the Jeff Conradi Memorial Border Wars XX. Kendle is so close right now, and a good finish this weekend paired with Alex stumbling could completely flip the script on the points race. With a pocket full of confidence and a wave full of momentum I am looking to see Kendle make a deep run at the Coach K Scholarship Open.
3. Daria Pajak - Daria has also been on a hot streak lately, although last weekend in Boise she had a tough go in match play. She has been grinding off camera though practicing virtually every day working on her craft. She has got some really good wins under her belt in step ladders lately and that will help in the bracket. If she can find that magic she's had the last few events, she is a threat to take down our 1 and 2 seeds.
2. Giorgio Clinaz - Gio is fresh off a win in Boise last weekend taking down KT, Andy, and Kendle in the step ladder. Now, Gio has not bowled all that well at CB TOUR events, and has yet to make a title match game, but it is just hard to deny the threat he is when he is bowling confidently. Gio knows this center, he knows how to tackle the lanes, and he knows the tools he has at hand. As long as he can kick the corners out, in my opinion he has the best shot at being the 2nd CB TOUR champion, ending our 1 seeds run.
1. Alex Hoskins - Alex is coming off a devastating end to the JCMBW XX in Boise where Gio and KT jumped him in the position round. By 1 and 2 pins respectively. That is an extremely tough break. However, Alex took 2nd in the first CB Masters and has been the only winner on the CB TOUR this year. How can he not be #1 in the rankings? Regardless of the talent that is in this field Alex is the man to beat. A win this weekend clinches the CB TOUR points championship and Alex will set a bar that may never be broken. All I know is, this weekend is going to be on a different level, and there is no way you are going to want to miss it.
The Coach K Scholarship Open kicks off Friday at 12:30 PM Pacific Time with the first of 5 qualifying squads streamed LIVE on Championship Bowling’s YouTube page. Check out social media for a full breakdown of the schedule!