ROHNERT PARK, Calif. – It seems Julia Bond is quickly figuring out how to be successful on the Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour.
Less than a month after graduating from Nebraska, Bond captured her second PWBA regional title with a 203-178 victory over Stephanie Schwartz in the final of the PWBA Sonoma County Regional on Sunday at Double Decker Lanes.
Besides the two regional titles, Bond, from Aurora, Illinois, also has two top-7 finishes in PWBA standard events, taking seventh in the PWBA Lincoln Open and sixth in this week’s PWBA Sonoma County Open.
“I know it can be tough, and I know that not every week you can make the cut or take home that title, but it’s nice when it does work out,” Bond said. “It’s not the first time I’ve bowled against these ladies, but it’s a different environment. I was a little nervous, but having this early success makes me feel like I made a good choice after graduation.”
In Sunday’s PWBA regional title match, Bond was behind early after failing to convert a 2-10 spare attempt in the fifth frame, only to see Schwartz leave the 7-10 split in the following frame. Bond responded with back-to-back strikes to take the lead, and stayed clean the remainder of the match.
“I knew no matter what happened in the match, I needed to stay calm,” Bond said. “When (Schwartz) had that bad break, I knew that was an opportunity for me. But knowing Stephanie for so long, I knew she was capable of coming back. I just had to stay calm and keep doing what I was doing.”
Bond and Schwartz, who attended Stephen F. Austin, not only competed against one another for national titles while in college, they were teammates on Junior Team USA.
Schwartz, from Nacogdoches, Texas, was the No. 4 seed in the stepladder finals and had to win two matches for the chance to make the title match.
She struck on five of her first eight shots in a 227-202 victory over Kayla Bandy of Salisbury, Maryland, in the opening match. In the semifinal against Gazmine Mason of Cranston, Rhode Island, Schwartz stayed clean early and posted consecutive strikes in frames 5-7 to pull away.
BowlTV.com had live coverage of the 29-player field, which bowled an eight-game qualifying round to determine the top four players for the stepladder finals.
The PWBA is conducting regional events in conjunction with five events on the 2019 PWBA Tour. The next PWBA regional will be Aug. 4 at Silver Lanes in East Hartford, Connecticut, in conjunction with the PWBA East Hartford Open and the event’s winner will earn a spot in the Go Bowling! PWBA Regional Showdown.
Bond and Cleveland regional winner Elise Bolton of Merritt Island, Florida, have earned their spots in the Go Bowling! PWBA Regional Showdown, a special made-for-TV event to be taped Aug. 17 in conjunction with the PWBA Orlando Open. The event airs Aug. 24 on CBS Sports Network and the winner will receive $6,000.