Lukosius climbs the ladder to win Myrtle Beach Regional
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C.- Karsyn Lukosius of Jackson, New Jersey, bounced back from a 139 game in qualifying to reach the stepladder finals and defeated everyone in her path to win the 2024 Professional Women’s Bowling Association Myrtle Beach Regional Sunday at Myrtle Beach Bowl.
Qualifying was difficult on the 73-person field as only five bowlers averaged above 200 for the eight-game block on the 39-foot condition with Lukosius only getting to plus 42 (1,642). Annalise OBryant of Ball Ground, Georgia, led the field with a 1,740 total, averaging over 217.
Lukosius’ focus on throwing one shot at a time contributed to her bouncing back from that 139 game with games of 247 and 232 to grab the third seed for the stepladder finals.
“It’s the first regional of the year, and I didn’t have too high of expectations; I was just wanting to make good shots and hope to cash,” Lukosius said.
Once the lights turned on for her first match against Corina Grasso of Fort Collins, Colorado, Lukosius was laser-focused, shooting 257, including the final seven strikes, against Grasso’s 177 as she began her march to the final match. Grasso would earn $600 for her fourth-place finish.
Waiting in the semifinal match was 2023 PWBA Regional Showdown winner Kerry Smith of Lititz, Pennsylvania.
Lukosius would start with a double, but strikes would be hard to come by for both competitors as only seven combined strikes were thrown, and the match became about who could make their spares and get the carry at the right time.
Smith was able to hit the pocket on a majority of her shots but couldn’t get any breaks, leaving six single-pin spares in the match with a crucial missed 10 pin in the seventh frame.
A ball change by Lukosius would be the difference as she doubled in the sixth and seventh frames to essentially lock up the match on the way to a 186-169 win. Smith earned $700 for her third-place finish.
The final match proved to be an exciting one as Lukosius faced off against OBryant, a five-time and current Junior Team USA member.
Neither bowler was able to pull away until OBryant left the 3-4-7 split and failed to convert, giving Lukosius an opportunity. Unfortunately, Lukosius left a split of her own, the 2-8-10, to let OBryant back in the match.
A spare and strike in the eighth and ninth frames for OBryant would mean that even if Lukosius struck out in the final frame, OBryant could still win with a max of 215 compared to Lukosius’ 212 max.
Lukosius aced all three in the 10th to force OBryant to double and get eight on her fill ball to win. But after OBryant’s first two strikes, she missed right and left the 1-2-4, which tied the match at 212 and forced a one-ball roll-off.
Both players matched each other with strikes on their first two roll-off balls, showcasing how determined each bowler was to win. Lukosius struck a third time before OBryant left a ringing 10 pin, and Lukosius emerged victorious. O’Bryant earned $905 for her second-place finish.
With the victory, Lukosius earned $1,800 as well as an automatic spot in the season-ending PWBA Regional Showdown in Winter Park, Florida.
“It feels nice to know that I’ve earned my spot into the Showdown, and I’ll keep myself prepared for that in December,” said Lukosius.