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 Post subject: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 2:20 pm Post Number: #1 Post
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Congratulations to our own Liz Kuhlkin (HuskerLiz24) on winning her 2nd PWBA title and 1st major.
She pretty much ran everybody over.

Why? She bowled better than everyone else on the telecast.
Also, he had the best ball reaction. Ball motion was good throughout the entire telecast.
She made one ball change after her pin down Method became a bit late in transition.
She went to a pin up Method to get a little more responsiveness down lane.
She made her spares and took advantage of the breaks she got throughout the evening.
Chuck Gardner and Jon Van Hees did a great job getting Liz in position to win.

IMO the ball motion I saw from EBI and Storm, those reps should be embarassed.
Bad ball motion, late ball reaction from shiny finishes, 7-10s, eventually playing with surface in the wrong part of the lane, and BIGGEST of all NO BALL CHANGES.
You might as well just mail it in each match if you're not going to match up and just keep throwing the same ball.

These ladies put in the work, become elite in terms of execution and the ball reps put bad ball reactions in their hand and expect them to work it out. It doesnt work that way.
It amazes me how much incompetence there is out there on the tours.
Bad ball motion is costing bowlers titles and careers. Its time for ball reps to step up and start doing what they were hired for, delivering products and ball motion that match up to what they're bowling on in the event using their knowledge of the product and their expertise. Right now, from some companies its lacking.

The whole situation bothers me, but I'm glad Liz is in a situation now where she can just go out and execute and trust the reps will deliver products that match up.

The market turns over product fast, but there is no excuse for not keeping up and not having an answer for anything these ladies are up against.

Stepladder Finals:


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 3:51 pm Post Number: #2 Post
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I think that another element in Liz's win was the fact that the bowlers bowled on a pair that had not been used at all during qualifying competition and were only allowed to throw two shots on each lane before the telecast started. Adding to that, once they threw their first practice shot, they were not allowed to change the surface on any of their bowling balls. Who's brilliant idea was that!?!

It was very telling that at the beginning of the match between Liz and Danielle, Kelly Kulick commented that Danielle had told her the night before that she had decided to play to the right of the others. How do you decide how you're going to play lanes on which you haven't bowled before before you ever throw your first shot? I have to say that after hearing Kelly's comment at the beginning of the game, Danielle's 172 came as no surprise to me at all.

Perhaps it's time to rethink that the whole Ball Rep thing, and start teaching bowlers at all levels to notice their ball reactions and understand their equipment enough to make adjustments on their own.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 4:17 pm Post Number: #3 Post
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Perhaps being a ball rep should be treated like any other professional position with a corporation.
If you cant do your job, you're gone, either fired or reassigned.
I think its time for these companies to start finding reps with "experience" and "knowledge".
IMO there can be a big separation.
Its all about matching up now, that takes knowledge (Ball design, dynamics, bowler specs & layout system).
Lining up, takes experience (Bowler characteristics & tendencies + hook shape + bowling environment)

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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 4:45 pm Post Number: #4 Post
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Or perhaps their role should be confined to teaching rather than inputting during competition. All of the top golfers have swing coaches, but they work with their athletes on the driving range, not on the golf course during competition.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:26 pm Post Number: #5 Post
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Lining up and matching up are two separate skill sets.
I do not think both need to be within the same person.
I think Brunswick is onto something with Chuck Gardner and Jon Van Hees.
One person may have an eye for the lane and coaching the other may be good at matching ball motion up to a bowler.
Doing both at the same time is so complex and time consuming having 2 people may be better.
I do not think understanding ball dynamics and a system of layouts is a prerequisite for throwing a bowling ball on tour.

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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:49 pm Post Number: #6 Post
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Once again, I think we'll have to agree to disagree.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:54 am Post Number: #7 Post
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A reps job is to get their bowler to the show. Beyond that, most of the answers lies in the hands of the bowler. It's like a race car driver feeding information to the pit crew. Just like a race driver, it is the bowlers obligation to provide the proper information to people responsible for putting the right equipment in the bowler's hand.

To put it in perspective, what if the problem isn't the ball? Instead, the bowler is not matching up to approach at that point in time. If that was the case, it would be pretty difficult to recognize the approach is an issue in two practice shots.

Two practice shots.

Here's what everyone should questioning. What other professional sporting event would even think about allowing participants a total of one minute to prepare for a championship?


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 8:52 am Post Number: #8 Post
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I love the bashing of the tour reps of other companies when the Brunswick umbrella finally gets a victory and most of them should get fired for the results of a 1 game match. Not celebrated for the 80-90% of the other victories that Storm/Ebonite have been getting. Hasn't Ebonite won like 6 of 8 tour stops this summer?

Most of the time it just boils down to execution, a player comfort zone on tv and the bowler matching up to the condition within it that bowler comfort zone.

If anybody thinks that bowling on tv is anything like they are used then you just need to check shannons spare game through tournaments vs. shannons spare game on tv. She has a mental block on that spare game on tv it seems this summer.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 2:00 pm Post Number: #9 Post
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TomaHawk wrote:
To put it in perspective, what if the problem isn't the ball? Instead, the bowler is not matching up to approach at that point in time. If that was the case, it would be pretty difficult to recognize the approach is an issue in two practice shots.


The approach? Really? The same approach all the bowlers have to use?

gunso wrote:
Most of the time it just boils down to execution, a player comfort zone on tv and the bowler matching up to the condition within it that bowler comfort zone.


Was the ball motion good or not?
This is the rep's job. To prepare the bowler for potential situations with equipment choices and lane play strategy.
What I saw was bad ball motion and no intent to change balls or the strategy to attack the pattern.
Just keep jamming the same bad ball motion down the lane shot after shot.

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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 2:29 pm Post Number: #10 Post
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Yes, the approaches.

The point is, there are a lot of factors which can come into play in a short set.

That is not to diminish the accomplishment of the victory. Any time a person experiences total success is quite an achievement. Team Brunswick did a great job.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:03 pm Post Number: #11 Post
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Agree on the approaches. One can have a problem with the approaches while another has no problems with them. It can have a huge mental effect when you start having problems with the approach, especially with as little time you have on tv.

Bad ball motion is not just layouts and bowling balls. I think I am correct when saying that there is a ball limit at the us women open. All those women obviously had a better ball motion throughout the tournament then right there on set and all got higher seeded than Liz so obviously there ball motion was on point that week since they made the show. They just either bet on the wrong horse for a 1 game match or just weren't executing properly. I have no doubt that in a longer format they would have changed bowling ball more rapidly if they felt their execution was on point.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 5:38 pm Post Number: #12 Post
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A few years ago when the WSOB was held in Vegas, I heard one of the nationally known pros tell his ball rep that he hadn't had a decent ball motion since the last couple of frames of the first game. This was halfway through the third game. He had continued to use the same ball all the way through the second game until his ball rep got to him in game three. I'm sorry, but there is something terribly wrong when a professional athlete continues to use the wrong equipment because his rep, or coach, or whatever, isn't around.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 5:50 pm Post Number: #13 Post
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Also of note is each competitor was limited to 8 balls. Counting the spare ball that leaves only 7 balls to drill for any and all conditions you may see (fresh through double burn). So based on bowling on the shot all week and making it to the stepladder they must be doing something right. And as others have alluded to, once the first practice ball is thrown there cannot be any surface adjustments.

Based on this I can't put too much blame on the rep if the bowler feels more comfortable doing something than what they would recommend. Much like a caddy is their to assist the golf pro, the ball rep is their to assist the bowling pro to accomplish the task at hand. Whether or not a ball rep should be needed is a different story all together.

Of the bowlers I saw I felt Danielle had the worst look. She looked to be throwing a polished Phaze II that never got into a roll. I don't know what other ball she had available to her but she is experienced enough that I feel she did what she thought was best and unfortunately it wasn't enough.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 1:50 am Post Number: #14 Post
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i didnt read all of the replies regarding the role of a ball rep on tour but my whole philosophy on the subject puts more of the responsibility of the bowler rather than the ball rep. if as an amateur I am able to read ball reaction fairly accurately and quickly then i dont understand how these professionals cant do it themselves during events. these are players that dedicate their (professional) lives to throwing and watching a bowling ball go down a lane. it is unbelievable to me that some of these tour players and hall of famers that I have heard of not understanding what i consider basic knowledge of bowling ball dynamics and ball motion.

to me a ball rep is just an extra set of eyes behind you maybe picking up a tweak in your physical game and someone who understands ball motion and knows your manufactures' ball line top to bottom to recommend the best ball from said line to throw. their role is to make suggestions. i would like the players to have conversations with them to figure out what to do rather than the rep telling them throw this ball and stand here and look there.

essentially i want them to be a proshop guy (which i know JVH is) that understands ball dynamics and motion with a little bit of coaching in them

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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:03 pm Post Number: #15 Post
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I like the idea of 2 balls on each lane and let's play ball ...may the best bowler not ball rep or coach win ...I came from the days when there was no coaching or ball reps around to help the bowler ...the two ball rule keeps the pattern intact and doesn't allow the bowlers to tear it a part and make it bumper bowling again ...We have seen what happened to scores at the national when they went to the 10 minute practice rule instead of 2 balls and play ball...Steve S


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:41 pm Post Number: #16 Post
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Don't underestimate the pros and especially the hall of famers. I think they do know the reaction they want to see from their balls. That may be their A game and a ball rep might say that the A game is not working. We all want to play our A game and stick to it a little too long. The main advantage that I see from having ball reps is that they can move around and see who is scoring and from where. The player is pretty much stranded watching the bowlers in their immediate area while the ball rep is mobile. The other advantage is that when you are moving from one lane to another, the ball rep has been in communication with other players on that pair and been watching how the next pair will tend to play. The more staffers giving the ball rep feed back, the bigger the advantage you will have when you shift pairs (if the rep will share that information with you). It is like pairs in your home house. When you play 15 and `16, you know 16 will not recover as well as 15. 13 and 14 play drier than other pairs or avoid the track on lane 8. Imagine the advantage you have in a tournament over bowlers who have never been there. Staffers give their bowlers that advantage.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:52 pm Post Number: #17 Post
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So now we are no longer at the place where who is the best at figuring out the shot first but who has the advantage of ball reps and other staffers feeding you info ...No wonder we have lost the scoring pace of the game ...It is not up to the bowler to be the one in control ...Steve S


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 3:44 am Post Number: #18 Post
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Stepladder finals video added to OP.

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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 8:33 am Post Number: #19 Post
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MegaMav wrote:
Stepladder finals video added to OP.

thanks. I couldn't find this.


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 Post subject: Re: 2018 US Women's Open Final Observations
 Posted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:13 am Post Number: #20 Post
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I finally watched the telecast of the Women's open final. On this day Liz Kuhlkin was the best. As far as ball reps are concerned, I for one would like to see them gone during the TV finals and let the bowler fend for themselves. During the week they can be there advising and helping. Now this next comment isn't meant to offend anybody. I am 78 and have been bowling since I was 16, so I've seen it all. In my humble opinion, technology has ruined the sport of bowling. I would like to see standardized equipment same cores in all balls same coverstocks and the only variable would be the oiling but no patterns but flat shots with distance and volume varying. Then for each tournament (PBA PWBA) the winner would be the best bowler and it wouldn't come down to equipment choice. I know that this is unrealistic and it will never happen. So in the bay area where I live I see bowling alley closures, not as much as years past but still happening. I can't say what's happening in the rest of the country but bowling as a professional sport will not survive. I hope I'm wrong only time will tell.

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