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Defending champion Jason Belmonte of Australia is one of the seven remaining undefeated players at the 2014 United States Bowling Congress Masters

Belmo, a Storm staffer, is off to the best start by a reigning champion since Jason Queen finished seventh in 1998.

Four Storm staffers and one Roto Grip staffer, John Szczerbinski, remain alive.

Belmonte rolled to an average margin of victory of nearly 127 pins in his first three matches, taking down Dakota Jordan of Anderson, S.C., Norm Duke of Clermont, Fla., and Syichi Heki of Japan.

In Saturday's winners bracket matches, Belmonte will take on Tom Smallwood, John Janawicz battles E.J. Tackett, Dick Allen bowls Ryan Ciminelli and Doug Kent takes on Michael Haugen Jr.

In the elimination bracket, Szczerbinski will face Bryan Goebel, Dom Barrett takes on Patrick Girard, Rhino Page bowls Dan MacLelland and Jaime Gonzalez battles Brian Himmler.

Despite only bowling three games a week these days, Kent of Newark, N.Y., is in prime position to make a little history at the event.

Kent, who won the 1991 and 2006 Masters, went undefeated in three matches Friday to start the double-elimination match-play bracket. He is just two more wins away from advancing to the TV finals, which will air live on ESPN on Sunday at 3 p.m. Eastern. 

Should he win this week, Kent would become just the second player to win three career Masters titles joining Mike Aulby, who won in 1989, 1995 and 1998.

Kent, who will be inducted into the USBC Hall of Fame in April, is one of eight undefeated players in the winners bracket after three rounds. Eight players with one loss remain alive in the elimination portion of the bracket heading into Saturday.

"I bowl three games a week now, and now I spend my time watching all these guys on TV," said Kent, who retired from the PBA Tour after the 2009-10 season. "After I retired, I never thought I'd contend for another title. I just got into a good rhythm and frame of mind to repeat shots. That's the name of the game."

Kent entered match play as the No. 7 seed after qualifying and defeated Hall of Famer Johnny Petraglia, 670-568, in his opening match. He then defeated Canada's Patrick Girard, 667-479, and ended his day with a 644-582 win over Stephen Pavlinko Jr. of Sewell, N.J.

In the elimination bracket, John Szczerbinski will face Bryan Goebel, Dom Barrett takes on Patrick Girard, Rhino Page bowls Dan MacLelland and Jaime Gonzalez battles Brian Himmler.

The Masters, which features a first-place prize of $50,000, is a major event on the PBA Tour and is part of the World Tenpin Bowling Association World Bowling Tour for the fourth consecutive season. 

All qualifying and match play rounds of the Masters are being covered live on Xtra Frame, the PBA's online bowling channel. For subscription information, visit

For more information on the Masters, including live scoring, visit


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