Minnesota father and son take lead at 2014 USBC Open

RENO, Nev. - The father and son duo of Clark and Carl Poelzer of Arden Hills, Minn., won the race to the top of the leaderboard at the 2014 United States Bowling Congress Open Championships on Friday night as they moved into the Regular Doubles lead with a 1,465 total.

Carl, a 30-year-old right-hander, fired games of 238, 254 and 269 for a 761 set to lead the effort, while Clark, a 62-year-old right-hander, added games of 214, 248 and 242 for 704. Scott Pohl of Burnsville, Minn., and 2007 Regular All-Events champion Mike Rose Jr. of West Henrietta, N.Y., previously held the top spot with 1,403.

The Poelzers' teammates also had the lead in sight at the National Bowling Stadium as all three doubles teams on their pair of lanes averaged more than 223 for the opening set. David Bordson of St. Paul, Minn., and 2006 Regular All-Events titlist David Mitchell of New Prague, Minn., settled into 10th place with 1,354, while Terry Halida of Chippewa Falls, Wis., and Kurt Hanke of Altoona, Wis., find themselves just outside of the top 10 after posting 1,342.

"In practice, we burned a spot outside and got it set up well," said Clark, who made his 38th USBC Open Championships appearance. "We balled down quickly enough, and it worked well, for doubles in particular."

Carl continued strong into singles, rolling a 729 series to go along with 665 in team for a career-best 2,155, which was enough to move him into sixth in Regular All-Events. Anthony LaCaze of Melrose Park, Ill., leads with 2,273.

The Poelzers' team, Visionary 1, also cracked the top 10 in Team All-Events with 9,821. Clark finished with 1,948, and they were joined by Bordson (1,944), Hanke (1,916) and Halida (1,858). Janz's H.I. of Beaver Dam, Wis., leads Team All-Events with 10,363.

"We worked as a team," said Carl, who made his ninth tournament appearance. "We all worked hard and got some breaks. I knew we were close, but not sure how close. If we win, that would be great as father and son."

Now that the pair has set their score, the wait for the 2014 tournament to conclude begins. After winning the Minnesota State USBC Doubles together in 2013, they now hope to add an Open Championships title to the mantle.

"I knew we could take the lead," Clark said. "But if we could put up a score to win as father and son, it would be really cool. It would be the neatest accomplishment that I've had. It's the last thing that's missing in my career. To be able to do it with my son would be unbelievable."

Visit us on Facebook at the official USBC Open/Women's Championships page.

Presenting sponsors for the 2014 USBC Open Championships include Circus Circus Reno, Eldorado Hotel Casino Reno and Silver Legacy Resort Casino Reno.