By Matt Cannizzaro and Brian Hirsch
USBC Communications

Thomas Fredrick and Mark Mallow of Watertown, Wisconsin, have combined for 25 appearances at the United States Bowling Congress Open Championships, but neither has had the opportunity to leave the event at the top of the leaderboard.That all changed Tuesday at the South Point Bowling Plaza as the duo dramatically snuck into the lead in Standard Doubles by a single pin.

Fredrick struck on nine of his first 10 shots in the final game, but his second offering in the 10th frame got away from him, taking three pins off the right side of the rack and giving up some count on a string of six strikes.

The 57-year-old right-hander toppled six of the remaining pins for a 247 game and 625 series, but that left Mallow needing to fill 20 pins in his final frame to secure the lead.

Mallow recorded a strike on his first offering and went high on his second, leaving the 6-10 combination. He picked up the spare, getting just enough of the 6 pin, and giving them enough to move past Ramon Pagan and Raymond Haran of Chicago, who previously held the lead with 1,191.

Mallow, a 56-year-old left-hander making his 14th trip to the USBC Open Championships, contributed a 567 series to the leading effort.

“The same thing happened most of the day – if I didn’t put it where I wanted it, it just went down the lane, and that time I ended up getting a three-count,” said Fredrick, who made his 11th tournament appearance. “Something just happened the last game. The strikes started to fall and we could keep the ball near the pocket and make spares.”

Mallow, the vice president at a bank, and Fredrick, an independent contractor, have been bowling together for more than 10 years at Watertown’s Watertown Bowl.

Their plan heading into the 2017 Open Championships was to have fun, while having fun with friends and family after bowling. On the lanes, they didn’t know they were inching their way to the top of the leader board with every strike and spare.
With the hard work done on the lanes at the Bowling Plaza, Fredrick and Mallow planned to enjoy some of the things the Entertainment Capital of the World has to offer.

“We did not know until we were done that we had taken the lead.” Fredrick and Mallow said. “We feel elated, as we had no clue what we had just done. We are going to have a great night in Las Vegas. We have plans to check out the Las Vegas 51s (a minor baseball affiliate of the New York Mets) game, and we’re in town for a few more days, so its vacation time.”

Fredrick, who competed individually in the Regular Division, added 567 in singles and 486 in team for a 1,678 all-events effort. Jacob Boresch or Kenosha, Wisconsin, leads Regular All-Events with 2,122.

Mallow, who competed individually in the Standard Division, added 513 in singles and 465 in team for a 1,545 all-events effort. Stephanie Sanders of Bakersfield, California, leads Standard All-Events with 1,826.

Standard Doubles teams have combined entering averages of 361-418, while individuals have averages of 181-209. The Regular Division is for competitors with entering averages of 210 and above.

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