Kent, Hamilton win Junior Gold

INDIANAPOLIS - Marshall Kent of Yakima, Wash., and Brittni Hamilton of Webster, N.Y., won national titles Friday, claiming the top spots at the 2010 United States Bowling Congress Junior Gold Championships presented by Brunswick.

Kent won the title by defeating Matthew Gasn of Laurel, Md., 269-265 in the final game of match play. Kent finished with 10,018 for 46 games, including a 10-6 record with 20 bonus pins for wins, while Gasn finished second with 9,996 and a 9-7 record.

On the girls side, Hamilton ran away with the title, winning by nearly 250 pins with a total of 9,800 and a match-play record of 11-5. Addileen Pointer of Highland, Mich., finished second with 9,553 and a 9-7 record.

In the final game, Kent stepped up first in the 10th frame and delivered three clutch strikes to shut Gasn out by a single pin and win the title.

"This is overwhelming, and I can't even describe it," said Kent, a 17-year-old who will be a senior at West Valley High school this fall. "On the last shot, I saw the 7 pin stand up for a second and when it fell, it was the best feeling in the world."

For Hamilton, it was the fifth time she's bowled Junior Gold and her last attempt to win the title. She finished fourth last year and established herself as the player to beat after Thursday's semifinals.

"It's amazing, and I don't really have words for it," said Hamilton, who will represent Junior Team USA in Helsinki, Finland at the World Youth Championships this later this month. "I knew it was my last year and my last chance to win. This is a nice way to pretty much end my youth bowling career."

The top four boys and top four girls in the final standings earned automatic spots on Junior Team USA 2011. Joining Kent and Gasn on the boys side was third-place finisher Chris Via of Springfield, Ohio, and fourth-place finisher Jacob Kent of Newark, N.Y. (no relation to Marshall Kent).

When the final standings came out, Jacob Kent and Andrew Koff of Miami were tied for fourth after 46 games. Kent defeated Koff, 177-167, in a one-game roll-off for the automatic spot.

On the girls side, joining Hamilton and Pointer on Junior Team USA was third-place finisher Kristie Petravich of West Palm Beach, Fla., and fourth-place finisher Kaitlin Quinn of Livonia, N.Y.

The National Selection Committee selected Koff, Kyle King of Glendale, Ariz., Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, N.Y., and Liz Seibel of Hellertown, Pa., to join Junior Team USA. The final roster for Junior Team USA 2011 will be determined at the 2011 USBC Team USA Trials in January, where spots for four girls and four boys will be up for grabs.

Earning the David Dahms Sportsmanship award at this year's Junior Gold was Amanda Fry of Antelope, Calif., and Nathan Ricks of Plantation, Fla.

Indianapolis is also hosting two other major youth bowling tournaments this month. The USBC Youth Open Championships at Expo Bowl continues through July 20 and picks up again July 22-24. The Youth Open will award $100,000 in scholarships to participants.

In addition, the North Pointe $100,000 High School Singles Tournament will be held at Hindel Bowl from July 17-19 and also will have $100,000 in scholarships up for grabs.