Eoff Wins Fourth Masters
The ninth annual Masters and was held February 5, 2017 at City Tournament host center Prairie Lanes. This year, 41 bowlers competed – up eight from 33 a year ago.
Derek Eoff defended his tournament title with a 212-170 win over Matt Ruhland in the championship match. Eoff earned $421.00, two tickets to the MBA Hall of Fame Dinner and Bowler Recognition ceremony in August, one ticket to the Dinner with the Champions in October, and another crystal Eagle Trophy.
The cut to make the stepladder finals (top 5) on the WTBA Paris pattern was +110, and the cut to cash was +71. One honor scores was bowled on the day, Eoff started with 280, 298, and 227 for 805.
All near misses occurred within the first three games, including Brent Ritchie with 280 in game two and 279 in game three. Austin Powers shot 279 in his first game, Hall of Famer Dan Seppa had a 277 second game, and Matt Krueger 276 in game three.
The field averaged 199.63 in the first game of qualifying on the pattern, with +10 as the last cash number and +31 the fifth stepladder spot. Eoff led with his 280, followed by Powers (279), MBA All Events Titlist Cody Roedner (256), Matt Ruhland (247), and Hall of Famer Jeff Barsness (231).
Eoff (578) extended his lead over second from one pin to 88 pins with a 298 second game. Seppa’s 277 got him to 490. Ritchie had 280 (467). Powers was fourth at 463, and Roedner fifth at 461. The cut to cash was +26. The field averaged 204.85 in the second game, and 23 bowlers were plus.
After three, Eoff (805) held first. Ritchie’s 279 gave him 746. Seppa fell to third at 709. Krueger moved into fourth with his 276 (703). There was a tie for fifth at 692 between Ruhland and Ken Duffield. The cut to cash jumped to +45 as the field averaged nearly 203 the third game. Overall, 18 bowlers were plus.
Through four games the the scoring pace remained consistent as the field averaged just over 202. 22 bowlers moved to plus. Eoff led at 1014. Ruhland shot 268 to move back up to second at 960. Brent Ritchie was third at 931, Duffield fourth at 920, and Powers returned to the top five at 913. The cut to cash at this point was +54.
Game five marked the beginning of a scoring decline, as the field mustered just over 197. The top five were Eoff (1231), Ruhland (1161), Ritchie (1133), Krueger (1121) and Mark Mansur / Cody Ramsden (1109). The cash cut barely moved to +55. 22 bowlers were plus.
Although the cut to cash jumped to +71, the sixth game was the lowest scoring at 193.61. Eoff earned the top seed, leading wire to wire, with 1437. Ruhland held on to second with 1372 and Ritchie third with 1325. Ramsden moved up a spot to fourth with 1314 and Jay Heinzelman rounded out the stepladder field at 1310. 22 bowlers were even or better at the conclusion of qualifying.
Overall, the tournament field averaged 200.07.
Match 1: #4 Ramsden def. #5 Heinzelman 210-205
Match 2: #3 Ritchie def. #4 Ramsden 216-200
Match 3: #2 Ruhland def. #3 Ritchie 202-196
Match 4: #1 Eoff def. #2 Ruhland 212-170