ARLINGTON, Texas – Rocio Restrepo of Louisville, Ohio, conquered what was arguably the most challenging lane condition of the Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour season in 2017, the PWBA Sonoma County Open.
The PWBA Tour returns to Double Decker Lanes in Rohnert Park, California, this week, the third consecutive season the center will host a PWBA Tour stop, and Restrepo will have a chance to defend a title she is extremely proud to have won.
One of the keys to Restrepo’s victory last season, in its simplest form, was experience. The time she invested bowling collegiately and in many high-level amateur events ultimately prepared her for the challenge she faced at last season’s PWBA Sonoma County Open.
“I honestly felt relieved to know that all those years of long formats in college bowling, grinding every shot in amateur events and having bad breaks in all those matches were preparing me for something bigger,” Restrepo said. “I did not know what God was working in me all those years, but when we were bowling on that pattern and I found a shot nobody could duplicate, I took full advantage of it.
“I knew putting myself in the leading position was going to be on my side, especially under the TV lights. I would be able to move in and swing it.”
Defending a title is difficult, as evidenced by Liz Johnson being the only player to successfully defend a singles championship (U.S. Women’s Open) since the relaunch of the PWBA Tour. Restrepo looks forward to the challenge.
“It would be a great experience to have the chance to defend the title,” said Restrepo, who is a three-time PWBA champion. “I have prepared for this moment for a year now. I want to give it my all and make the best of every shot.”
Restrepo defeated Brandi Branka of Fairview Heights, Illinois, in the title match, 203-168, at the Raising Cane’s River Center in Baton, Rouge, Louisiana. With qualifying and match play taking place at Double Decker Lanes, the title match added some difficulty because the finals were taped in a different location.
This season, all stepladder finals will be completed at the host venue, one change highlighting the 2018 season, and the final will be shown live on Xtra Frame, the online bowling channel of the Professional Bowlers Association.
Restrepo has won three PWBA titles in two seasons and is a threat to win every week. In 2016, she finished as the runner-up to Johnson for player of the year and she could find herself in position to claim the award in 2018.
But, it’s her attitude, on and off the lanes, that just might be the key for a strong run this season.
“I want to stay more patient with myself,” said Restrepo, who is originally from Colombia. “I feel like I am throwing the ball the best I’ve ever had. I just have to leave my heart and soul on the lanes because that’s what makes me great. I love bowling so much. I actually get sad when I know I did not give it my all and was not myself on the lanes.”
“Through my bowling, I want people to be able to see the passion I have for everything I do in life. I strive to be better than I was before. I have a very big heart and I am as real as it can get. I want people to know they can be awesome, kind, loving, and passionate all at the same time. You can have it all, but it’s all in the attitude you have for everything you do. 2018 for me is the year of being grateful for all the blessings in my life.”
The stepladder finals of the PWBA Sonoma County Open will be streamed live from Double Decker Lanes on Saturday, May 5, at 8 p.m. Eastern on Xtra Frame.
Xtra Frame again will be the livestream home of the PWBA Tour, with live coverage of all 14 events, including the stepladder finals of the first six standard events. Visit XtraFrame.TV for more information.
CBS Sports Network will televise the stepladder finals of seven events on the 2018 schedule including, all four majors, and will have five Saturday prime-time shows. CBS Sports Network’s coverage of the PWBA will begin May 22 with the USBC Queens, the first major event of the season.
Visit PWBA.com to learn more and for complete coverage of the 2018 PWBA Tour season.