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O'Neill Edges Belmonte for Top Finals Birth In PBA Oklahoma Open 6/4/2015

Making his third stepladder final of the Oklahoma's Grand Casino Hotel & Resort PBA Summer Swing, five-time PBA Tour champion Bill O'Neill of Langhorne, Pa., won a position round match in the final match play round at FireLake Bowling Center to earn the top berth for the PBA Oklahoma Open finals.

O'Neill, who already qualified second for the Summer Swing Wolf and Bear Open finals, beat two-time defending PBA Player of the Year and Oklahoma Open defending champion Jason Belmonte of Australia, 255-214, in the final match to take the top spot. O'Neill finished the day with 10-8 overall match play record and 8,492 36-game pinfall (including bonus pins) to edge Belmonte, who finished second five pins behind with an 8,487 pinfall and 11-7 match play record.

"Obviously you're looking at the big picture to get to this point in this tournament, but you can't really ever let off the gas," O'Neill said. O'Neill, who says he sometimes has a tendency to over-analyze his game when he's not bowling well, didn't have that problem during the Summer Swing. "When I'm bowling well, I really don't think about much at all," O'Neill said. "In that last match I knew what I had to do and just threw it because everything was where it needed to be."

Final Match Play Standings (after 36 games):

1, Bill O'Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 10-8, 8,492.

2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 11-7, 8,487.

3, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 12-5-1, 8,272.

4, Patrick Allen, Mount Kisco, N.Y., 9-8-1, 8,247.

5, Andres Gomez, Colombia, 11-7, 8,206.

6, Shawn Maldonado, Houston, 10-8, 8,190, $4,000.

7, Dom Barrett, England, 10-8, 8,160, $3,500.

8, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 11-7, 8,107, $3,000.

9, J.R. Raymond, Bay City, Mich., 10-8, 8,069, $2,800.

10, John Szczerbinski, N. Tonawanda, N.Y., 10-8, 8,063, $2,500.

11, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., 8-10, 8,022, $2,300.

12, Tyler Jensen, Ft. Worth, Texas, 9-9, 8,000, $2,100.

13, Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., 8-10, 7,978, $2,000.

14, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 6-12, 7,955, $1,900.

15, Scott Newell, Deland, Fla., 8-10, 7,942, $1,800.

16, Mike Fagan, Ft. Worth, Texas, 6-12, 7,887, $1,700.

17, Scott Norton, Mission Viejo, Calif., 6-12, 7,843, $1,600.

18, Anthony LaCaze, Melrose Park, Ill., 6-12, 7,648, $1,500.

Article was posted with permission from Stars & Strikes, America's Bowling Newsmagazine.