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Jurek in top qualifying spot

After averaging 230.8 for the first two rounds of qualifying, Jack Jurek struggled a bit Wednesday but retained the No. 1 spot in qualifying for the start of match play Thursday in the Suncoast PBA Senior U.S. Open in Las Vegas, Nev.

The two-time PBA Tour and PBA50 Tour titlist from Lackawanna finished qualifying with a 4,042 18-game pinfall total, but had to overcome two sub-par games in the middle of the round. He bowled a 1,272 six-game pinfall (212 average) in the third round with games of 217, 231, 159, 186, 223 and 256. Jurek’s total was 140 pins better than second place Rick Steelsmith.

“I got caught up in the” lane condition “transition there in the third game and it was a struggle,” said the 51-year-old Jurek.

“I had to scramble to find the right ball and got some advice from” ball rep “Tim Mack and eventually got back on track.

“Prior to game five I made another ball change to something less aggressive and got the ball reaction I was looking for which brought my confidence level back.”

“You want to avoid that bad game but it seems like it’s going to happen eventually,” he said, “but now I know about the third or fourth game of each round I’m going to have be better prepared for the transitioning lane condition.”

Jurek is trying for his second PBA50 win of the season and third of his career.

Buffalo native Tom Baker, now a Super Senior (60 and over) is in 11th place.