O'Keefe, O'Neill team up to win SABC Mixed Doubles title
By Bill Vint
HOUSTON, Texas – Shannon O’Keefe of O’Fallon, Ill., and Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa., won their first seven of eight matches Sunday to run away with the 16th annual PBA-PWBA Xtra Frame Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles tournament title at Palace Lanes, repeating their title-winner performance of 2013.
O’Keefe, an 11-time Team USA member and currently head women’s bowling coach at McKendree University, earned her first Professional Women’s Bowling Association title while O’Neill picked up his seventh Professional Bowlers Association title and second of the 2015 season. The winner pair also split the $15,000 first prize.
O’Keefe and O’Neill came into the eight-game match play final round in seventh place, but averaged a combined 214 for 20 doubles games and earned 210 match play bonus pins, charging into the lead after four other teams each held the lead for one game earlier in the match play finals. With a 160-pin lead going into the final game, O’Keefe and O’Neill finally lost a match to runners-up Lynda and Chris Barnes, but they still won comfortably, 8,782-8,707 pins.
“We were fortunate to win our first two matches because we didn’t bowl that well, but we both made ball changes in game three and from that point on, we really bowled well,” O’Neill said. “The scores were a lot lower than I thought, but the conditions just got really flat and made it hard for the women. Fortunately I bowled with one of the women who can get inside and hook the ball. When she found it, she got her confidence back and really bowled well.”
It was O’Keefe’s third Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles title. She also won the 2012 title with her husband, Bryan.
“I finally got the monkey off my back and I couldn’t be happier to win my first PWBA title, thanks to Bill,” O’Keefe said. “PWBA went away and for the past decade, I’ve bowled with Team USA and that has kept me going. I’m way too competitive to not want to bowl.”
“Bryan was coaching Team USA at the Tournament of Americas in 2013, and it conflicts with this tournament, so I asked Bill if he’d like to bowl and we won,” O’Keefe said. “This year I asked him early and got him locked up.”
“I was just very fortunate that Bryan doesn’t bowl that much anymore and let me bowl with his wife,” O’Neill said.
The tournament, which also serves as a fund-raiser in support of The Rose, a Houston-based organization that helps women who can’t afford breast care treatment or mammograms, and the Huntsman Group, a cancer research based in Utah, raised more than $74,000 for its charities. Over its 16-year history, the tournament has raised more than $725,000 to fight breast cancer.
PBA’s Xtra Frame online video-streaming service will offer doubleheader coverage of the PBA/PBA50 South Shore Doubles from Olympia Lanes in Hammond, Ind., along with the PWBA Topeka Open presented by Prairie Band Resort & Casino from West Ridge Lanes in Topeka, Kan., over the Aug. 6-8 weekend. For Xtra Frame subscription information, visit pba.com and click on the Xtra Frame link.
PBA-PWBA XTRA FRAME STRIKING AGAINST BREAST CANCER MIXED DOUBLES
Palace Lanes, Houston, Texas, Sunday
Final Match Play Standings (after 20 games, including match play bonus pins)
1, Shannon O'Keefe, O'Fallon, Ill./Bill O'Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 7-1, 8,782, $15,000.
2, Lynda/Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 5-3, 8,707, $8,000.
3, Anita Arnett, Richmond, Texas/Tyler Jensen, Fort Worth, Texas, 5-3, 8,532, $5,000.
4, Jodi Woessner, Oregon, Ohio/Dino Castillo, Highland Village, Texas, 3-5, 8,458, $4,000.
5, Diana Zavjalova/David Wodka, Beavercreek, Ohio, 3-5, 8,407, $3,000.
6, Verity Crawley, England/Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 3-5, 8,352, $2,500.
7, Elise Bolton, Merritt Island, Fla./E.J. Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 2-6, 8,337, $2,200.
8, Jackie Carbonetto, Blauvelt, N.Y., Matt Gasn, Laurel, Md., 4-4, 8,311, $2,000.
Other Cashers (after 12 games):
9, Megan Kelly, Dayton, Ohio/Ronnie Russell, Marion, Ind., 4,999, $1,800.
10, Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y./Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 4,993, $1,700.
11, Kristin Warzinski, Muskegon, Mich./Joe Findling, Mesquite, Texas, 4,988, $1,600.
12, Cassandra Leuthold, Rapid City, S.D./Jason Sterner, Covington, Ga., 4,981, $1,500.
13, Liz Johnson, Cheektowaga, N.Y./Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 4,980, $1,450.
14, Liz Kuhlkin, Schenectady, N.Y./Ryan Shafer, Horseheads, N.Y., 4,970, $1,400.
15, Elysia Current, Ephrata, Pa./Travis Celmer, Wernersville, Pa., 4,924, $1,350.
16, Brenda Padilla, Mansfield, Texas/Xeno Garcia, Fort Worth, Texas, 4,920, $1,300.
17, Karen Boyd, Fort Lauderdale, Fla./John Janawicz, Winterhaven, Fla., 4,892, $1,250.
18, Rocio Restrepo, Colombia/Joe Hostetler, Louisville, Ohio, 4,874, $1,200.
19, Brittni Hamilton, Victor, N.Y./Jesse Buss, Belvidere, Ill., 4,870, $1,180.
20, Maria Rodriguez/Manuel Otalora, Colombia, 4,861, $1,160.
21 (tie), Jacqui Reese, McAdoo, Pa./Nathan Van Putten, Houston, Texas, and Robin Romeo, Newhall, Calif./Eddie VanDaniker Jr., Chatsworth, Calif., 4,860, $1,130.
23, Shannon Pluhowsky, Dayton, Ohio/Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 4,856, $1,100.
24, Heather Whitney/Tyson Branagan, Euless, Texas, 4,854, $1,080.
25, Clara Guerrero/Andres Gomez, Colombia, 4,831, $1,060.
26, Kayla Bandy, Salisbury, Md./Jimmy Cook, Indianapolis, 4,803, $1,040.
27, Anggie Ramirez, Chicago/DJ Archer, Kingswood, Texas, 4,764, $1,020.
28, Sandra Gongora/Humberto Vazquez, Mexico, 4,700, $1,000.
29, Allie Ijams, Wichita, Kan./Brett Spangler, Niles, Ohio, 4,685, $800.
30, Heather D'Errico, Rochester, N.Y./Eric Martinez, San Antonio, Texas, 4,681, $750.