The cream often rises to the top at Tournament of Champions. This year’s event, thus far, is no exception.

EJ Tackett continues to lead the field through 26 games, while Anthony Simonsen, surged into second place after the first round of match play. The two met in the PBA Jackson Classic title match last week — won by Tackett — and have combined for four of the season’s five titles.

Entering the final round of qualifying at the famed AMF Riviera Lanes, Jason Belmonte sat in 51st place and 154 pins out of the cut. He said he wanted to have a good day, adding that he knew there were other things, like points, to fight for.

“I also knew mathematically I could still get there,” he said.

The 39-year-old fired a field-high 1,446 series (+246), climbing into 20th place and inside the cut. The three-time TOC champion, currently in 21st place, seeks to become the first player with four TOC and 15 major titles.

François Lavoie, the 2021 TOC champion, wasn’t far behind. He shot 1,441 to move into the cut as well, and he tied Belmonte with a strike percentage of 71%. He sits in eighth place.

Stu Williams and Dick Allen continue to hover within striking distance of Tackett, while Andrew Anderson moved into the top five on Wednesday evening.

Anderson said he has never missed the match play round at the TOC in his career. Despite a rough season so far, he said, a return to Riviera helped boost his confidence.

“This is a really good place to have a good track record,” he said.

The final two rounds will take place on Thursday, March 16 at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET. After the evening’s round, the top 17 players will advance to the four-part stepladder finals, airing Friday through Sunday on FS1 and FOX.

Tickets are available for TV shows on Friday and Saturday, including the finals of the PBA Jr. National Championship on Friday afternoon.

Standings Through 26 Games

  1. EJ Tackett +912
  2. Anthony Simonsen +858
  3. Stu Williams +785
  4. Dick Allen +785
  5. Andrew Anderson +749
  6. Marshall Kent +742
  7. Kris Prather +679
  8. François Lavoie +657
  9. Jake Peters +657
  10. Matt Ogle +656
  11. Jesper Svensson +628
  12. Jason Sterner +626
  13. Graham Fach +622
  14. Tim Gruendler +611
  15. Wes Malott +596
  16. Shawn Maldonado +592
  17. Kyle Troup +589
  18. Tom Daugherty +561
  19. Packy Hanrahan +550
  20. Richie Teece +493
  21. Tom Smallwood +475
  22. Jason Belmonte +469
  23. Frank Snodgrass +433
  24. Chris Via +415

Full standings are available here.

Tournament Schedule

All times are listed in Eastern time

Thursday, March 16 | BowlTV
10 a.m. — Match Play Round 2 (eight games)
5 p.m. — Match Play Round 3 (eight games) — top 17 players advance

Friday, March 17 | FS1
10 p.m. — Stepladder Round 1 (seeds No. 13-17)
Tickets for the 6 p.m. taping are available here

Saturday, March 18 | FS1
7:30 p.m. LIVE — Stepladder Round 2 (advancer and seeds No. 9-12)
9:30 p.m. LIVE — Stepladder Round 3 (advancer and seeds No. 5-8)
Tickets for the Stepladder Rounds 2-3 shows are available here

Sunday, March 19 | FOX
12 p.m. LIVE — Stepladder Finals (advancer and seeds No. 1-4)
Tickets for the Stepladder Finals are sold out

More information is available here.


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