Emotional journey ends atop Team All-Events standings at 2017 USBC Open

LAS VEGAS - More than three weeks after taking the lead in Regular Team at the 2017 United States Bowling Congress Open Championships, Team NABR of Fairport, New York, put the final touches on an emotional journey by also securing the top spot in Team All-Events.

The last pieces fell into place Saturday at the South Point Bowling Plaza as Scott Pohl and team captain Mike Rose Jr. completed their doubles and singles events, while the remaining members of the team - Adam Barta, Anthony Pepe and Brian Waliczek - waited for the news hundreds of miles away.

Pohl, who led the team effort with a 694 series, and a refocused Rose, who had 602 in team, returned to the Bowling Plaza to finish the job their teammates started April 14. They solidified the group's place atop the Team All-Events standings with a 9,957 total. Vanilla Salsa of Roseville, California, previously held the lead with 9,743.

Under normal circumstances, all five team members would've been on-site to finish things together, but after a heavy-hearted surge into the team lead with a 3,266 effort April 13, Rose returned home to attend his sister's memorial service. Shelly Rose Stein lost her battle with cancer April 12.

"It's much more relaxing now that it's over," Rose said. "I was kind of stressed coming out, since there was a lot of pressure to do well for the guys. Scotty and I have been talking every day for the last two weeks about what we were going to do here, and just about life in general as I went through this difficult time, and it really helped. I visited my sister's grave the day before I left and asked her to look over me and my team, and she was definitely there with us tonight."

TeamNABR2017OCForWeb465x262Waliczek, Barta and Pepe did much of the heavy lifting last month, averaging more than 229 in doubles and singles to finish with 2,051, 2,040 and 2,010 all-events totals, respectively, meaning Rose and Pohl needed to average just over 195 in their final six games to surpass Vanilla Salsa.

Pohl rolled sets of 653 in singles and 644 in doubles to finish his 2017 USBC Open Championships campaign with a 1,991 all-events total, and Rose, the 2007 Regular All-Events champion, added 644 in singles and 619 in doubles for 1,865.

"We didn't quite add as many pins as we wanted, but we think it's a good score," Pohl said. "There was a big difference in the process, having to wait more than three weeks to bowl again. It was hard to not be aware of everything and what we had to do, but I wouldn't want to do it with anyone else in the world."

Team NABR captured the Regular Team title at the 2015 Open Championships in El Paso, Texas, with a lineup featuring Barta, Pohl, Waliczek, Rose and Rob Gotchall. Pepe, a titlist on the Professional Bowlers Association Tour, joined the rotation in 2017, making his first Open Championships appearance since 2014.

In addition to leading two events, Waliczek and Barta sit in fifth and eighth place, respectively, in Regular All-Events, while Barta's singles performance, which included a 299 game on the way to a 776 series, is third overall.

Jacob Boresch of Kenosha, Wisconsin, leads Regular All-Events with 2,122, while Matt Gasn of Clarksville, Tennessee, and Steve De Kerf Jr. of Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin, are tied for the Regular Singles lead with 802.

Regular Team includes five-player teams with a combined entering average of 1,046 or higher. Regular All-Events features bowlers with entering averages of 210 and above. Team All-Events includes the combined all-events totals of all five team members.

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