Wisconsin team breaks record at 2014 USBC Open

RENO, Nev. - After a close call last year, Motion Plus Lanes of Greenfield, Wis., returned to the National Bowling Stadium and left its mark in the United States Bowling Congress Open Championships record books with the highest team score in 111 years of tournament competition.

The group posted games of 1,269, 1,177 and 1,115 for a 3,561 total, 23 pins better than the previous record of 3,538, rolled by 2013 Regular Team champion Lodge Lanes Too of Orlando, Fla. Janz's H.I. of Beaver Dam, Wis., previously held the lead at this year's event with 3,499, bowled just 24 hours earlier.

Chad Kloss led the way for Motion Plus Lanes on Friday with a 762 series and was followed by former Junior Team USA member Chris Pierson (756), Chad Maas (717), Dave Beres (698) and two-time USBC Open Championships titlist Jeff Nimke (628).

"We felt like even last year, we could have gotten more," said Kloss, who made his 14th Open Championships appearance. "Now that we've been together for another year, we knew we could score, and we did today."

Last year, as Red Carpet Lanes of Waukesha, Wis., Kloss and his teammates finished their 2013 campaign with a 1,272 game, the third-highest in tournament history, on the way to a 3,499 total, which now is tied for eighth all-time with Janz's H.I., and was good enough for a fifth-place finish.

Kloss rolled a 300 game in last year's finale and started Friday's team event with seven consecutive strikes. Their opening game of 1,269 ranks fourth all-time.

"We bowl great together as a team," Kloss said. "We talk a lot, and there are no egos. This tournament, everybody gave everything. Whenever we come out here, that's the main goal - to leave everything out there and leave here emotionally and physically drained."

When Lodge Lanes Too dramatically capped off its record-run on April 2 of last year, soon-to-be USBC Hall of Famer John Gaines and his teammates were a single pin ahead of the previous mark of 3,537 held by Bruegger's Bagels of Albany, N.Y., since 1993.

Gaines said at the time that if his team could get there, others could, too, and the record wouldn't mean as much unless they held on to win.

Now, Motion Plus Lanes is in the same position, knowing that many talented teams are scheduled to compete before the 2014 Open Championships concludes July 13.

"Winning would mean the world," said Kloss, who along with Beres, spent time as an exempt player on the Professional Bowlers Association Tour. "A lot of us have bowled on different levels. Winning a team eagle is the pinnacle of this sport, in my opinion."

Motion Plus Lanes' companion team, Southern Storm of Ocala, Fla., posted games of 1,062, 1,036 and 1,148 for a 3,246 total, which is just outside the top 10. The team includes 2008 Regular Doubles champion Dennis Rakauskas (681), Jace Peterson (675), three-time titlist John Socha (667), Rich Abboud (658) and Brian Brazeau (565).

Nicholas J's Pro Shop 2, the 2012 Regular Team winner, also bowled on Friday afternoon's team squad and finished close behind with 3,240.

The highest single-game score in Open Championships history (1,281) was rolled by Turbo 2-N-1 Grips of Madison, Wis., on the way to a 3,473 total and the 2011 Regular Team title.

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