Bowling News USA - December 3, 2010 PBA Chameleon Championship Airs Dec. 12th 1:00PM EST on ESPN
Rookie Norton Claims No. 1 Berth in PBA Chameleon Championship Finals
Son of USBC-PWBA Hall of Famer advances from 14th to first in bid for first PBA Tour title
LAS VEGAS, Nev. (Nov. 2, 2010) – Rookie Scott Norton of Costa Mesa, Calif., advanced from 13th place to earn the No. 1 berth in Friday’s Chameleon Championship stepladder finals at South Point Bowling Center Tuesday.
Norton, 28, the son of United States Bowling Congress and Professional Women’s Bowling Association Hall of Famer Virginia Norton, won seven of his nine matches Tuesday, including a 257-195 victory over Finland’s Osku Palermaa in his final match to qualify for his first Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour television appearance.
He is the third straight player in three PBA World Series of Bowling “lane condition” championships to earn a No. 1 berth for the first time. On Monday, Eugene McCune of Munster, Ind., and Andres Gomez of Colombia qualified first for the Brunswick Pro Bowling Cheetah and Pepsi Viper Championship finals, respectively, for the first time in their careers.
Norton, a practicing attorney in his first year out of law school, finished the qualifying and match play portions of the Chameleon Championship with a total of 4,932 pins including match play bonus pins. He overtook Wes Malott of Pflugerville, Texas, and Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas, in the final game of match play. Sean Rash of Wichita, Kan., and Palermaa rounded out Friday’s finals field.
“You never come out here if you don’t expect to compete,” Norton said. “I came into the World Series hoping to execute and bowl well. Today and last Wednesday (during his qualifying round), things worked out well. It probably didn’t hurt that I was the only left-hander in the field today. I had a fresh shot on every pair of lanes. No one to mess it up for me; it was quite nice.
“I’m still pretty amazed,” he added. “I got to grow up watching my mother bowl, and I got to see her on TV and wondered what that would be like. I got to see her inducted into both halls of fame, and I always kinda dreamed and hoped.
“When the PBA went to its exempt tour program (in 2004), I was finishing my undergrad year in college and I had a decision to make about whether to go on tour or finish your law degree,” Norton said. “I figured it couldn’t hurt to have a backup plan, and that was mine. So now I’m the only practicing attorney on tour.”
Norton had a successful amateur career, as a collegiate All-American, 2000 U.S. Amateur Champion and a member of Team USA 2001. He earned his PBA Tour exemption by winning the PBA Regional Players Invitational in Reno, Nev., last December. But he said he learned one of his most valuable lessons from Team USA sports psychologist Dr. Dean Hinitz.
“We were very busy at work before I came out here, so I had limited time for practice. I made sure it was all about execution, being able to hit all five of the patterns. But my work with Dr. Dean for a few years proved to be incredibly insightful, especially today. He taught me now to take games like that last one and turn it into something special rather than fear it.
“Pressure it a privilege,” Norton said. “I have always treated it that way. If you feel pressure, you’ve done something good to get yourself into that position.”
During the Chameleon Championships match play round, Finland’s Mika Koivuniemi was forced to withdraw due to a back injury suffered during a practice session on Sunday. Koivuniemi’s status for Friday’s special “USA vs. The World” team event, where he qualified as a member of the international contingent, is unknown.
The Chameleon Championship stepladder finals will be conducted at 3 p.m. Pacific on Friday at South Point Bowling Center for delayed airing on ESPN on Sunday, Dec. 12, at 1 p.m. Eastern.
Bowling fans around the world are following the action on Xtra Frame, the PBA’s exclusive video-streaming service. Full-year, World Series only and one-day trial memberships are available by visiting www.xtraframe.tv.
2010 PBA WORLD SERIES OF BOWLING
South Point Bowling Center, Las Vegas, Nev., Tuesday
(After 21 games, including match play bonus pins; top five advance to stepladder finals at 3 p.m. Pacific Friday; finals will air on ESPN at 1 p.m. Eastern on Sunday, Dec. 12)
1, Scott Norton, Costa Mesa, Calif., 7-2, 4,932.
2, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 6-3, 4,915.
3, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 5-4, 4,903.
4, Sean Rash, Wichita, Kan., 6-3, 4,846.
5, Osku Palermaa, Finland, 5-4, 4,843.
6, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 6-3, 4,828, $2,500.
7, Brian Kretzer, Dayton, Ohio, 5-4, 4,813, $2,300.
8, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 5-4, 4,792, $2,200.
9, Danny Wiseman, Baltimore, 4-5, 4,776, $2,150.
10, Bill O'Neill, Southampton, Pa., 6-3, 4,775, $2,100.
11, Tony Reyes, San Bruno, Calif., 4-5, 4,736, $2,050.
12, Tyler Jensen, Ft. Worth, Texas, 3-6, 4,682, $2,000.
13, Michael Haugen Jr., Carefree, Ariz., 4-5, 4,662, $1,950.
14, Jason Sterner, McDonough, Ga., 2-7, 4,521, $1,900.
15, Bryon Smith, Roseburg, Ore., 2-7, 4,485, $1,850.
16, Mika Koivuniemi, Hartland, Mich., withdrew, $1,800.
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