ORLANDO, Fla. - Colombia's Rocio Restrepo surged to the top of the standings during the first round of qualifying at the 2019 BowlerX.com Professional Women's Bowling Association Orlando Open, averaging more than 226 for her first eight games Friday at Boardwalk Bowl.
The four-time PWBA Tour champion has struggled with health issues throughout the 2019 season, but she feels like she's found her rhythm after posting a 1,814 total, a 226.75 average, to lead the 32-player elite field.
Erin McCarthy of Omaha, Nebraska, who led the pre-tournament qualifier (PTQ) on Thursday at Boardwalk Bowl, sits in second with 1,807. Reigning PWBA Player of the Year Shannon O'Keefe of Shiloh, Illinois, is third with 1,791, while Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, New York, and Josie Barnes of Nashville, Tennessee, round out the top five with scores of 1,771 and 1,758, respectively.
The top 12 players after Friday's second round of qualifying, which starts at 5 p.m. Eastern, will advance to Saturday's Round of 12. Total pinfall for 16 games will determine the advancers.
Liz Kuhlkin of Schenectady, New York, is in 12th place after the first round with a 1,696 total, a 212 average. Kuhlkin won the 2018 U.S. Women's Open at Boardwalk Bowl.
A total of 32 players earned spots in the elite field at the 2019 BowlerX.com PWBA Orlando Open. The top 24 players on the 2019 PWBA points list (through the Pepsi PWBA Louisville Open) secured automatic spots in the field, while the PTQ filled out the rest of the field.
One player in the elite field - Singapore's Cherie Tan - did not compete this week, which allowed nine bowlers to advance from the PTQ.
Saturday's Round of 12 will feature six additional games and start at 10 a.m. Eastern. Total pinfall for 22 games will determine the top five players advancing to the stepladder finals, which will be broadcast live Saturday at 4 p.m. Eastern on CBS Sports Network.
BowlTV.com is providing livestream coverage of all rounds leading up to the stepladder finals.