Liz Johnson's exhausting six match run through the losers' bracket Monday earned her the fourth seed for tonight's stepladder finals of the USBC Queens bowling championship.
The Cheektowaga bowler, who lost her first match Sunday, had to bowl 18 games, averaging 230.6, in a span of of 11 hours Monday to stay alive in the major tournament of the season for women.
Johnson completed her day by finishing second in a four-bowler match to determine the final three spots in the stepladder final. Carolyn Dorin-Ballard earned the top rung of the stepladder with her 596-592 victory in the winners' bracket final over Stefanie Nation of Grand Prairie, Texas.
Diandra Asbaty of Chicago bowled 706 to take the No. 3 spot on the stepladder in the four-bowler losers' bracket final. Johnson bowled 645 for fourth and will face the final qualifier, Josie Earnest of Nashville, Tenn., in the opening match tonight. Earnest shot 663 to beat out 2011 Queens winner Missy Parker (599) for the last finals berth.
Before that, Johnson eliminated two two-time Queens winners in head-to-head matches Monday.
First she defeated Shannon O'Keefe, formerly of Rochester, 659-647. Her most decisive victory came against two-time champion Kelly Kulick of Union, N.J. Johnson defeated the former PBA Tournament of Champions winner, 718-599.
Colombian star Clare Guerrero, who now lives in Pflugerville, Texas, fell next, 687-615. Johnson then defeated Katherine Lanehart of Eagle River, Alaska, 673-653, before a resounding victory over another two-time former champion, Wendy MacPherson of Henderson, Nev. Johnson averaged to 256 in her 769-714 triumph over MacPherson.
Johnson received a first-round bye Sunday because she qualified among the top 16 bowlers, but after losing her first match fo Olivia Sandham, she had to defeat 2011 Queens runner-up Elysia Current to move on to Monday's play.
Qualifying and match play was held at AMF Euless Lanes. For the finals, the tournament will move to the International Training and Research Center in Arlington, Texas, and will be televised live on ESPN2 at 7 tonight.
Ciminelli is victor
CATSKILL -- A week after his runner-up finish in the PBA Tournament of Champions, Ryan Ciminelli of Cheektowaga won the PBA East Region 900 Global Open over the weekend at Hoe Bowl.
Ciminelli had a 13-3 match-play record to pick up 390 bonus pins for a 5,713 total on the PBA Cheetah oil pattern. The win was worth $2,500. Ciminelli finished 69 pins in front of Eddie Torres of Port Ewen. Brad Angelo of Lockport was 15th, with a 5-11 match-play record and 4,833 pins.