Thomas Jefferson junior wins WPIBL boys singles title by 4 pins

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Wednesday, February 24, 2021 | 8:25 PM


Thomas Jefferson’s Nick Johnson edged Freeport’s Mark Livingston by four pins to capture the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Bowling League boys singles championship Wednesday at AMF Mt. Lebanon Lanes.

Johnson, the No. 2 seed for the bracketed playoffs, rolled a 195 in the finals to Livingston’s 191.

The Jaguars junior made a big leap in the standings after he placed 57th at last year’s WPIBL singles event at Sims Lanes in Beaver Falls.

In the semifinals, Johnson topped the No. 3 seed, East Allegheny’s Ian Baker, 202-182, and Livingston, the No. 5 seed, upended No. 1 seed Dominick Vallano from Hempfield, 181-167.

The top six from the qualifying round competed in the bracket playoffs. Also making the playoffs were Greensburg Central Catholic’s Daniel Morgan, the No. 6 seed, and No. 4 seed Ryan Neville from Burrell.

The qualifying round, where each bowler rolled three games, was competitive as places two through 11 were separated by just 16 pins.

Vallano recorded a 624 series with high game of 233 in the qualifying round to take first place by 42 pins.

Yough’s Jason Rauch finished with the tournament’s top game as he posted a 252 during the qualifying round. Baker added a 243, while Butler’s Rocco Rice tallied a 234 game.

Up next for a group of boys bowlers is the Western Regional singles tournament March 5 at the North Versailles Bowling Center.

The top 40 finishers from Wednesday’s qualifying round automatically earn regional berths.

The remaining qualifiers will consist of the top two from each section if they didn’t make the top 40 and then those eligible bowlers — based on games and average — from all of the sections until a field of 74 is reached.

The WPIBL girls singles tournament takes center stage Thursday from AMF Mt. Lebanon Lanes.

Michael Love is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Michael by email at mlove@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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