Author Topic: '80 PBA National - Petraglia completes triple crown
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Member # 23072

The date was March 29, 1980 at the $100,000 PBA National Championship held at Sunnybrook Lanes in Sterling Heights, Michigan. Johnny Petraglia already won titles at the Firestone (1971), and the US Open (1977). He needed the National in his pocket to complete bowling triple crown, only achieved at the time by Billy Hardwick. After 3 unsuccessful tries, this was his best chance, qualifiying first in the '80 edition. His opponent was Gary Dickinson, who qualified 5th, and won 3 matches to meet Petraglia in the finals. The match became close, after Dickinson threw stikes in the 5th, 6th, and 7th to take the lead. My clip starts with action in the 8th frame with Dickinson up. As a side note, Pete Weber, and Mike Aulby have completed bowlings triple crown. Hi hope you enjoy the clip:

Sunnybrook Lanes, Sterling Heights, Mich., Mar 24-29, 1980
Sterling Performance By Petraglia

Johnny Petraglia decided not to waste an opportunity to control his own destiny and fired four tension packed strikes to defeat Gary Dickinson, 235-223, for the PBA National Championship to reach yet another milestone in his remarkable pro career.

The winner of the Firestone Tournament of Champions in 1971 and the BPAA U.S. Open in 1977, Petraglia claimed the mythical Triple Crown of pro bowling with the victory, the only player other than Billy Hardwick to achieve such.

The Nationals, shifted to the Winter Tour for the first time in its 21-year history, was led in the early going by 1961 champion Carmen Salvino who set a 16-game national tour record when he totaled 4,015--a 251 average--through the first two rounds.

When Salvino slipped out of the lead in match play, Petraglia was there to take over, averaging 231 over 56 games while Jay Robinson, John Denton, Sam Zurich and Dickinson occupied positions two through five.

Petraglia waited to bowl the championship match aware that more than one of his most sought after performance goals was on the line. The 33-year-old lefthander wanted to win title No. 14, wanted to win a tournament in the 1980s and most of all wanted to complete the circuit of major championships.

It all came down to 10 frames of action that dramatized all the skill, talent and experience that put the top-seeded Staten Island, N.Y., pro in position to once again nail down one of the most prestigious titles the sport offers.

Dickinson, looking for his second title of the year, slipped past Zurich in the first match, 186-185, and then handled fellow-Texan Denton, 220-216. Denton had set a PBA record of his own during the event, rolling 56 straight games of better than 200 after opening the tournament with a score of 191.

Dickinson proceeded to trounce Robinson, 242-214 in the semi-final match. After opening in the first frame of the title game the lanky right-hander gave chase right to the end when the gritty Petraglia closed him out with four finishing strikes.

The victory was worth $15,000 to Petraglia at Sunnybrook Lanes in Sterling Heights, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, where the Motor City throngs turned out in overflow numbers to watch, cheer and appreciate the greatest bowlers in the world.


Pos. Name, City/State Total Amount

1 Johnny Petraglia, Staten Island, N.Y. 235 (1 game) $15,000
2 Gary Dickinson, Ft. Worth. Tex. 871 (4 games) 8,000
3 Jay Robinson, Van Nuys, Calif. 214 (1 game) 6,000
4 John Denton, Midland, Tex. 216 (1 game) 5,000
5 Sam Zurich, Centerport, N.Y. 185 (1 game) 4,000

PLAYOFF RESULTS--Dickinson defeated Zurich, 186-185; Dickinson defeated Denton, 220-216; Dickinson defeated Robinson, 242-214, and in the championship game, Petraglia defeated Dickinson, 235-223.