Pinon Plaza to host PBA Regional event

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Top bowlers from across the West Coast will again descend on the Pinon Plaza Bowling Center for a Professional Bowlers Association regional event that has increased in size.

The Pinon Plaza will host its third regional event this weekend. The first two events involved just bowlers from Nevada and California, but this weekend's event will be the Northwest and Western Regionals, involving bowlers from eight states.

Bill Baker of the Pinon Plaza said 90 to 100 bowlers should compete this weekend. The regular PBA Tour has concluded, meaning that many of the top bowlers on the PBA tour will be competing this weekend in Carson City.

Among the top PBA bowlers expected to compete are San Jose's Tony Reyes, who has been a regular at the Pinon regional events, and Jason Couch. Many bowlers who aspire to be on the PBA Tour or bowl part-time on the PBA Tour are expected to compete.

Among the other top bowlers in the event will be Carson City's Don Simonian.

An invitational event for the PBA Tour's top 30 bowlers will be held later this month in Virginia, so for bowlers like Couch and Reyes, this weekend's event will be a tuneup for that tournament.

This weekend's event will begin with a practice round from 2 to 4 p.m. Friday. The tournament begins Saturday with bowling to begin at 8:30 a.m. and last all day. A pro-am tournament will be held at 8 p.m. Saturday.

The top 16 bowlers will advance to Sunday's head-to-head finals, which should last from 8 a.m. to about 3 p.m. The finalists will bowl eight games in the morning and eight games in the afternoon. Top finishers will be decided by the total pins scored and bonus pins for matches won.

The first place prize should be $2,500 to $3,000 with a total purse of $12,000. The Pinon has donated $5,000 toward the prize money.

Bowlers will compete under PBA lane conditions, which are "much tougher conditions than your average league play or anything like that."

Baker said while its not realistic for Carson City to host a PBA Tour event because major sponsors would be needed, the Pinon is looking to host other major events.

With the closure of Reno's National Bowling Stadium, Baker said the Pinon and the Reno Hilton are now the top places for hosting major events.

Baker said the Pinon is looking to host events that used to be held at the National Bowling Stadium. "That's what we're after," he said.

The Pinon has already landed another major event as it will host a Team USA coaching clinic over three days in May.


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