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Pete Weber Wins His First Suncoast PBA Senior U.S. Open Title 7/31/2015

LAS VEGAS - Professional Bowlers Association Hall of Famer Pete Weber of St. Ann, Mo., won the Suncoast PBA Senior U.S. Open presented by Storm to join fellow Hall of Famer Norm Duke of Clermont, Fla., as the only players to win U.S. Open titles on both the PBA and PBA50 Tours.

Weber, who has won a record five U.S. Open titles on the PBA Tour, defeated local favorite and No. 1 qualifier Eric Forkel of Henderson, Nev., 224-212, in the title match at the Suncoast Bowling Center to join Duke in the elite club.

"A major title is a major title no matter where it comes from," said Weber, who owns 37 PBA Tour titles including a record tying 10 majors. " That's why they have them, because they're above the rest of the tournaments. I don't care if it's a senior major or super senior major, they mean the same to me because of what it takes to win them."

In the title match, Forkel, a five-time PBA Tour titlist, held an eight-pin lead over Weber in the seventh frame with both players throwing a double in the eighth and ninth frames.

Forkel, who finished third in the 2013 Senior U.S. Open, left a seven pin on the first ball of the 10th frame which left an opening for Weber. Weber got the first two strikes in the 10th frame that sealed the win.

"I couldn't really complain today because 90 percent of the shots I made I felt real good about," said the 53-year-old Weber. "You expect to have a bad break somewhere but I didn't really have one worth mentioning. When I didn't strike I had a nine-count most of the time and when that's the worst you do you're going to be in good shape." In the semifinal match, Weber defeated Duke, who won the 2014 Senior U.S. Open on his way to earning PBA50 Player and Rookie of the Year honors, 247-190, to advance to the title match. Duke defeated Weber in last year's title match, 214-174, to win the Senior U.S. Open.

As the No. 4 qualifier, Weber opened the stepladder final by defeating six-time PBA Tour winner and No. 3 qualifier Chris Warren of Grants Pass, Ore., 224-202, to advance to the semifinal match against Duke.

"I just used the same philosophy for the finals I used for the whole tournament," said Weber, who did not have an open frame in his three matches. "Just stay patient and make the spares."

For Weber it was his first PBA50 Tour title of the season and fourth of his career. He now has won both PBA50 Tour majors having captured the United States Bowling Congress Senior Masters title in 2013.

Former major league all-star pitcher and PBA50 Tour rookie John Burkett of Southlake, Texas, bowling in his first PBA50 Tour major, finished 15th.

The Senior U.S. Open is considered the most demanding test for players because of its grueling format. Like the U.S. Open on the PBA Tour, the Senior U.S. Open demands patience, quality shot- making and a strong mental game over 50 games of qualifying and match play to make the finals.

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

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