Second day of qualifying concludes at 2020 USBC Team USA Trials

Day 2 results: Women | Men

Overall standings: Women | Men

At 15 years old, Jillian Martin of Stow, Ohio, already is experienced on the lanes well beyond her years, and she has displayed an equal amount of maturity through two days of competition at the 2020 United States Bowling Congress Team USA Trials.

With a game to go in the event's opening round Friday, Jillian was about 30 pins ahead of the 164-player women's field and in position to be the overall leader after the first of five days of competition.

Instead, she finished the six-game block with a 132 game and dropped from first place to eighth. She said she struggled with what angle to play and got the ball to the friction on the 39-foot Beijing oil pattern too early, causing a lack of reaction downlane. The result was 2-10 splits and washouts.

How she responded to that moment easily could've been the turning point of her week, and the young right-hander handled the adversity like a seasoned veteran.

Jillian returned to the Gold Coast Bowling Center on Saturday having left her previous struggles behind her. She knew it was a new day and new oil pattern, and she was quick out of the gate, starting the block with a 237 game.

Three games over 260 helped her to a 1,423 six-game total on the 45-foot World Bowling London oil pattern, landing her second only to defending champion and USBC Hall of Famer Kelly Kulick of Union, New Jersey, who paced the field for the second consecutive day. She topped the Round 2 standings with a 1,494 total, a 249 average.

Team USA member Julia Bond of Aurora, Illinois, finished the day third with 1,413 and was followed by her Team USA teammates Jordan Richard of Tecumseh, Michigan (1,401), and Breanna Clemmer of Clover, South Carolina (1,388).

"I can't change what happened in the past and came in today with a clear mindset," Jillian said. "The plan was to just go back out there, do what I can do and not let anything get in my way. I am confident in my ability and trust myself. I know I may struggle sometimes, but I hope if I can stay calm and focused it all will even out."

The USBC Team USA Trials features a point-based ranking system, where competitors earn points based on their finishes during each of the five days. At the end of the week, the player in each division with the lowest point total will be declared Team Trials champion.

By virtue of finishing at the top of the standings each of the first two days, Kulick tops the women's overall standings with two ranking points. Jillian and Clemmer are tied for second place with 10 points and followed by 15-time Team USA member Shannon O'Keefe of Shiloh, Illinois (13), and Bond (16).

PateNick2020TeamTrialsForWeb250x140On the men's side, two-time Team USA member Nick Pate of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, finished with games of 259 and 268 to surge to the top of the men's Day 2 standings.

His 1,430 total, a 238.33 average, bested Alex Glinski of Linfield, Pennsylvania, by eight pins (1,422), and the two were followed by 2019 Team USA members Perry Crowell IV of St. Clair Shores, Michigan (1,420), and Andrew Anderson of Holly, Michigan (1,409), as well as Kai Yamada of Kaneohe, Hawaii (1,396).

Andrew Guba of Las Vegas posted the first perfect game of the 2020 event during Saturday's second game. He finished the day tied for 16th place with 1,366.

"The key word for me today was patience," Pate said. "I was 100 over after four and felt like I was struggling compared to everyone else. I just told myself to be patient and that it would come, and I got a bunch the last two games. Patience is something I've learned is important after bowling this event a few times, so I'm going to use that word the rest of the week."

Pate is coming off a breakout year with Team USA that included a pair of 300 games in international competition and three gold medals. His haul included a team victory at the 2019 Pan Am Bowling Men's Championships and doubles and singles titles at the 2019 Pan Am Games. Both events were held in Lima, Peru.

With that momentum continuing into 2020, Pate also is the men's overall leader after two days of Team Trials competition. He finished 11th in Friday's opening round and now tops the standings with 12 points.

Former Junior Team USA member Greg Young Jr. of Rockledge, Florida, is second with 19 points, Glinski is third with 20, Yamada is fourth with 21 and defending champion John Janawicz of Winter Haven, Florida, also a USBC Hall of Famer, is fifth with 28.

Having the experience he had while representing the United States on the lanes has magnified the way Pate already felt about being a Team USA member. That has him even more motivated this week in Las Vegas.

"To get back on the team and wear the red, white and blue, especially after the year I had, I just want a chance to put on that jersey again," said Pate, who made his first appearance on Team USA in 2017. "I'm going to have a nice meal and good night's rest and refocus for tomorrow and the new pattern. The main goals will be the same, and that's to have good ball motion and make my spares."

Next up for the nearly 340 bowlers (175 men and 164 women) will be the 37-foot World Bowling Stockholm oil pattern.

The men will return to the lanes first Sunday, getting underway at 11 a.m. Eastern, and the women will bowl their third round at 5:30 p.m. EST, all live on BowlTV.

Jillian, who already secured herself a spot on Junior Team USA 2020 with an outstanding performance during 26 games of qualifying at last summer's Junior Gold Championships, will rely on her competitive experience and mental preparation to maintain her momentum.

She had a phenomenal 2019 overall, actually, bowling up two divisions at Junior Gold for a chance to make Junior Team USA (bowlers in the U12, U15 and U17 divisions aren't eligible) and nearly cashing at the U.S. Women's Open. She finished tied for 41st place among the 108 competitors. The top 36 earned prize money.

The more time Jillian has spent on the lanes alongside some of the country's best bowlers and competing on a variety of challenging lane conditions has helped her become more and more comfortable.

She also practices for more than an hour each day, does a lot of drills, spends time developing her versatility and reads books on mental performance. Her reading choices have helped her understand that frustration over time only will be a detriment, and that ultimately has helped her in Las Vegas this week.

"It's kind of crazy for me to be here, but I've become pretty comfortable in this environment and being around many of the players I look up to," Jillian said. "I've learned to stay in my own lane and focus on what I need to do, but sometimes I look around and can't believe where I am."

Eventually, Jillian would like to earn a spot on the adult version of Team USA and hopes that collegiate bowling and a career on the Professional Women's Bowling Association Tour also are in her future.

Of course, without the support of her family none of what she has accomplished would be possible.

"It's a pretty hectic schedule, but my family is so supportive, and I appreciate them so much," Jillian said. "We've learned together over time how to manage our time and be able to get where I need to go, especially since I can't even drive yet."

The 2020 Team USA Trials also includes the United States Amateur Bowling Championships.

After all rounds of competition, the U.S. Amateur stepladder finals and the introduction of Team USA and Junior Team USA for 2020 will broadcast live at

In addition to the Team USA Trials title and spot on the team, the winner of each division again will represent Team USA at the World Cup. The 2020 event will be held in Kuwait.

The top four men and top four women at the 2020 Team USA Trials, based on ranking points, will earn automatic spots on Team USA, while two additional men and two additional women will be selected by the National Selection Committee from the pool of players that competed during the week at the Gold Coast Bowling Center.

The National Selection Committee also will select a maximum of five men and five women for the team based on submitted resumes. Those applicants must have been Team USA or Junior Team USA members within the last 10 years or among the top 25 in earnings during the 2019 Professional Bowlers Association Tour season or top 25 in points during the 2019 Professional Women's Bowling Association Tour season.

After the final qualifying round at the Team Trials, the top three amateur men and top three amateur women will advance to a stepladder final to determine the U.S. Amateur champions. Both winners will earn spots on Team USA.

If the U.S. Amateur champion already has earned a spot on the team, the spot will be awarded to the next-highest Team USA Trials qualifier based on ranking points.

To be eligible for this year's U.S. Amateur, a bowler must not hold or have held a professional membership (PBA or PWBA) in 2019. Also, anyone who has won a professional title (regional, national or senior) as a professional is not eligible to compete as an amateur.

For youth competitors, the top four boys and top four girls, based on ranking points, automatically will earn spots on Junior Team USA 2020. Two additional boys and two additional girls also will be selected by the National Selection Committee based on performances from either the 2020 Team USA Trials or 2019 Junior Gold Championships.

They will join the youth competitors who already earned their spots on Junior Team USA 2020 through qualifying at the 2019 Junior Gold Championships.