Strikes were in short supply in the next round as Pluhowsky faced Cherie Tan, of Singapore, in the semifinals. The two left-handers tallied a total of three strikes in the match with Tan rolling two of them.
“The lanes got a little tighter and I am sure adrenaline was flowing more and so my speed increased slightly as well,” Pluhowsky said.
Tan converted the 2-4-7 in her final frame to edge out Pluhowsky, 178-166. The Singapore bowler’s run ended in the finals as top-seeded Barnes claimed the biggest check ever awarded in a professional women’s bowling event – $100,000 – with a four-pin advantage. The 33-year-old right-hander edged out Tan, 198-194, to claim her first major championship and fourth PWBA title.
“I was happy with the week overall and will learn from Game 2 after Cherie,” Pluhowsky said.
Success on the national stage is nothing new for Miami Valley bowlers as Springfield native Chris Via won the U.S. Open in April, one of five majors on the PBA Tour.
“The U.S. Open is the tournament that everyone wants to win, it’s the most prestigious tournament and historically the hardest to win,” Via said. “It’s a long and grueling format with multiple oil patterns. It’s a mental and physical grind where the best that week, rise to the top. To be able to be known as a U.S. Open Champion for the rest of my life, it’s my greatest accomplishment to date.”
Pluhowsky agrees wholeheartedly about the prestige of the U.S. Open.
“It’s at the top of the list,” she said. “There is nothing like the green jacket.”
U.S. Women’s Open Final Standings 1. Josie Barnes, Hermitage, Tenn. 2. Cherie Tan, Singapore 3. Shannon Pluhowsky, Dayton, Ohio 4. Stephanie Zavala, Downey, Calif. 5. Diana Zavjalova, Latvia