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The Journal Gazette

  • Courtesy PBA Ron Mohr, a 1974 New Haven graduate, is seeking to repeat as PBA60 Player of the Year. “I have a pretty substantial lead even though I'm going to miss this last event,” he says.

Saturday, August 05, 2017 1:00 am

Mohr hopes to strike big at home

Win in city could launch senior star into bowling Hall

Mark Ambrogi | For The Journal Gazette

Bowling

What: PBA50 DeHayes Insurance Group Championship

Where: Pro Bowl West

When: The PBA50 tournament begins with practice at 3:30 pm. today and Pro-Am at 7:30 p.m. First-round qualifying begins at 11 a.m. Sunday, with second-round qualifying at 11 a.m. Monday. The cashers round is 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, followed by match play rounds at noon and 3 p.m. The five-player stepladder finals are set for 7 p.m. Tuesday. The regional's practice is at 5 p.m. Tuesday, with action beginning at 9 a.m. Wednesday. The PBA60 tournament begins with practice Thursday at 9 a.m. Qualifying round is at 11 a.m. Friday, with first match play round at 5 p.m. The second match play round begins at 8:30 a.m. Aug. 12, with top five advancing to noon stepladder.

It would only be fitting that Ron Mohr reaches a significant milestone next week.

If the Fort Wayne native can win the PBA50 DeHayes Insurance Group Championship at Pro Bowl West, it will be his 10th national pro bowling title. That feat would make him eligible for the PBA Hall of Fame.

“That would be a perfect place for all that to happen, but a lot of things have to go right, so we'll see,” Mohr said.

Mohr said to make the Hall of Fame might be a stretch, but given his late pro bowling start to even be eligible would be special.

The PBA50 tournament starts with practice today through Tuesday.

The PBA60 Dick Weber Championship runs Thursday-Aug. 12. However, Mohr will miss the PBA60 tournament because he is a member of USA Senior Team, which competes in the 2017 World Senior Championships Aug. 13-20 in Munich, Germany. Mohr, along with his wife, Lita, and sister, Amy Gerardot, will leave Thursday after competing in a one-day PBA50 regional at Pro Bowl West Wednesday.

“Right now, I'm the only three-time member of USA Senior Team,” said Mohr, who also made the team in 2013 and 2015.

Mohr lost in the PBA60 championship match to Don Sylvia at Pro Bowl West last year.

Mohr, 61, will be staying with Amy while in his hometown. Mohr's son, Jon, lives in Fort Wayne and two brothers, Jim and Tom, live in the area.

Mohr, a 1974 New Haven graduate, moved to Alaska in 1979 and became an air traffic controller. He retired as a controller in 2008 and then went back to work as an air traffic control instructor because he could get five months off from April to September to bowl the senior events. After retiring completely, Mohr moved from Alaska to Las Vegas in 2013.

Mohr is seeking to repeat as the PBA60 Player of the Year in 2016.

“It looks like that will happen again,” Mohr said. “I have a pretty substantial lead even though I'm going to miss this last event. With any reasonable performance in the PBA50 event, no one will be able to catch me.”

Mohr never even had a PBA card until he went on what was then called the PBA Senior Tour.

“I didn't even know it I would be competitive at all,” Mohr said. “I just went out to try it.”

Mohr cashed in his first two events in 2008. A PBA rule is if a bowler cashed twice, the bowler has to become a PBA member to cash again so he joined and the rest has been a pleasant history. Mohr was named PBA50 Player of the Year in 2009 and 2011. He has earnings of more than $300,000.

Mohr seldom competes in regular PBA Tour events as do some of the other seniors.

“They are so young and so strong,” Mohr said. “The analogy I give is it would be me like being very good at table tennis, so I decide to go play Wimbledon. The games are that different the way they play and how young and strong they are. The concept is the same that you still have to knock down pins. But it's extremely difficult to compete at the level that they see every day. So I limit most of my competition to PBA50 and PBA60 events.”

Brian LeClair leads the PBA50 Player of the Year standings heading into the Pro Bowl West tournament. Other bowlers in PBS50 POY contention are PBA Hall of Famers Norm Duke and Walter Ray Williams. Pete Weber and Parker Bohn III are expected to compete at Pro Bowl West.