The KFYR TV Bowling Classic is in its 31st year of existence. The past 30 years have provided champions of all ages and several memories that were all captured live on KFYR TV (local NBC affiliate). The KFYR is the only Major that is still broadcast on live local TV. The TV show and competition level have created a tradition unlike any other Major here at NDBowling.com. Here are a few story lines that will only add to the level of excitement at the 31st Annual KFYR TV Bowling Classic.
Odd Year Success for Smallin
Since 2009, Matt Smallin has made it a habit of bowling for Major Championships in odd numbered years. In 2009 he fell short of winning his first Major at the KFYR TV Bowling Classic following a defeat by Ryan Schleicher in the title match. 2 years later, Smallin captured the CMA Memorial Shootout in thrilling fashion over career Majors leader Mike Schmidt. Following wins at the KFYR in 2013 & 2015, Smallin enters the 2017 Bowling Classic with his sights set on another championship. A win would vault Smallin into elite territory, joining John Juba and Jack Nelson as the only 3 time winners of the KFYR. The win would also make Smallin one of 6 bowlers with 4 or more career NDBowling.com Major titles.
Land of Opportunity?
Since 2012, only 3 players have made multiple appearances in the KFYR TV Finals (Matt Smallin, Mike Schmidt, and Ted Staikoff). The KFYR has had 22 different players reach the TV Finals since 2012 out of a possible 25. What could be the reason you say? Well, it comes down to a couple reasons. First, lane pattern integrity. Sure, the KFYR has had years where the left dominates. The tournament has also had years where the right dominates. But when you stop and think about it, there have been years where the more direct players win along with years where the more hook-happy players win. Second reason? Field parity. The KFYR TV Bowling Classic and the NDBowling.com Classic have always attracted bowlers of similar skill and experience levels as opposed to the slightly more top heavy fields seen at the Manitoba Open and the CMA Memorial Shootout. I think these two reasons offer up a tournament of opportunity for many entrants. Just be sure to take advantage of the patterns that allow you to play in your comfort zone because you will likely see something drastically different the following year.
As Grand as it Gets
Until another bowler claims 3 of the 4 NDBowling.com Majors, all eyes will be on Eric Parvey when it comes to the KFYR TV Bowling Classic. Parvey is the only bowler to have won 3 of the 4 NDBowling.com Majors missing only the KFYR. Parvey lost to Ryan Sandvick in the title match of the 2014 KFYR TV Bowling Classic but only had 2 Majors to his credit at the time. Parvey would go on to win the NDBowling.com Classic in 2015 leaving him one Major short of the career grand slam.
NDBowling.com Bold Predictions
This season seems to be as difficult as any to pin point who be successful. With a 2.5-1 ratio oil pattern, shot making and spare shooting will be important factors. For the past several years, Midway Lanes has hosted a doubles event that features the KFYR pattern. Due to calendar time constraints, the tournament was not held this year and most of the out of town bowlers have yet to see the pattern in play. Advantage? The local bowlers who have likely been bowling on this pattern at league for a couple months. With that, I expect to see a little bit of local flavor in the finals this season. Here are my predictions for the final 5. (In no particular order)
– Matt Smallin
– Brad Nordick
– Thomas Wolf
– Clayton Mohr
– Eric Kempel
If you are in Western North Dakota, be sure to tune your TV to your local NBC Station at Noon on Sunday for the finals. This tournament will NOT be on NDBowlTV.
Thank you all for visiting NDBowling.com and tune in next week for a complete recap of the event!