JEFF AUSTRENG WINS $5,000 FIRST PRIZE IN INAUGURAL MICHIGAN STATE MASTERS Jeff Austreng of Waterford Township won the inaugural Michigan State Masters at Royal Scot Lanes in Lansing Sunday when he defeated Mason Brantley of Detroit 418-391 to win the $5,000 first prize and the title. Brantley settled for the second place check of $2,500.
Austreng qualified fourth with a six-game total of 1,361. In match play he remained undefeated by beating Lisa Bishop of Belleville 428-337 in the two-game matches, John Milletics of Sandusky 435-368, Raymond Eddy III of Saginaw 414-301, Carleton Chambers of Detroit 433-393 and John Essenmacher Jr. of Lenox 445-395 to advance to the finals.
“I’m speechless and super excited.” said the 37-year-old Austreng. “This event places a premium on shot making and making spares.”
Austreng beat the best bowlers in the state of Michigan on a difficult lane pattern under tight Sport Bowling requirements averaging 218.6 and only recording two games of the 18 he bowled under 200. The lane pattern was the same as the 2006 United States Bowling Congress Masters Tournament.
He also won a paid entry into the 2009 USBC Masters, which will be contested in Las Vegas in February 2009.
Brantley qualified third with 1,363. He lost his first match against Terence Haines II of Garden City 420-410 falling into the loser’s bracket. He then won eight matches to advance to the finals. He beat Mike Chrzanowski of Shepherd, Ted Boltz of Muskegon 398-371, John Nolen of Waterford Township 415-391, Julie Hall of Richville 424-377, Tyler Wilds of Marcellus 431-365, Brian Waliczek of Birch Run 471-392, Duane Henderson of Detroit 453-418 and Essenmacher 380-366.
Essenmacher qualified 22nd with 1,256. In match play he beat Mark Milasinovich of Oxford 459-444, Nolen 416-409, Haines 416-393 and Waliczek 401-379 before falling into the loser’s bracket with the loss to Austreng 445-395. Once in the lower bracket he fell to Brantley 380-366. Essenmacher took home $2,000.
Henderson qualified 15th with 1,286. In match play he beat David Cushion of Dewitt 455-341, Ted Boltz of Muskegon 488-478 then fell to Waliczek 403-392. In the loser’s bracket he eliminated top qualifier Randy Warnken of Clinton Township 430-382, Haines 492-382 and Chambers 372-350 before losing to Brantley 453-418. Henderson settled for $1,500.
Top qualifier Warnken led the qualifying by 41 pins with 1,415. He won his first match against George Miller of Grand Rapids 499-375, then fell to Hall 408-398. He went on the beat Darryl McGhee of Burton 415-378 before falling out of the competition with a loss to Henderson 430-382. Warnken took home $500.
The field of 181 bowlers average 191.09 during the six games of qualifying. The top game in qualifying was recorded by Chad Gutzman of Mount Pleasant with 299. In match play Carleton Chambers of Detroit had the top game with 298.
The top 32 qualifiers averaged 215.2 during qualifying and 204.6 in match play.
The Michigan State USBC Masters Tournament is a USBC certified event operated by the Michigan State USBC Association.
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2008 MICHIGAN STATE USBC ASSOCIATION