PBA bowler fined for incident at 10pin
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Professional Bowlers Association

(Above) In this video frame, PBA bowler Sean Rash (in upper right) is directing harsh words to Jason Belmonte, seen at far left drinking from a controversial water bottle.

23-Jun-11 – A burst of profanity at the GEICO PBA Team Shootout a few weeks ago will cost one of the competitors.

The Professional Bowlers Association has fined 28-year-old Chicago resident Sean Rash an undisclosed amount for the outburst, calling it “conduct unbecoming a professional.” The event was held at Marina City’s 10pin Bowling Lounge May 29 through June 1 and videotaped for broadcast on ESPN starting on Saturday.

Rash was apparently annoyed by a squeaky water bottle just as he was about to roll the ball during the “Eliminator” match on June 1 with Australian Jason Belmonte. He threw a strike anyway but heatedly told Belmonte, who is suspected to have made the noise with his water bottle, to “take that, you bottle bitch.”

Rash then lets slip another expletive, deleted in the video, and one earlier, right after the squeaky noise, muttering, “Really? Lots of [bleep] class right there.”

PBA’s Chief Operating Officer offered an explanation for the outburst. “For bowling fans who may think the GEICO Team Shootout was a so-called ‘silly season’ exhibition, I think they will find out otherwise,” Tom Clark said in a news release on Wednesday, “It was a fierce competition for the second annual Manufacturer’s Cup, with significant money and a great deal of pride on the line. It featured 20 of the best players in the world bowling with one goal – to win – and that shines through in this series.”

Apparently, this has happened before with Belmonte. The news release mentions an incident earlier this year in Indianapolis, in which Belmonte was accused of making distracting noises with his water bottle while Brad Angelo was in his approach.

Professional Bowlers Association

(Above) Jason Belmonte reacts to Rash’s outburst in this frame from video of the incident.

Belmonte also released a statement, saying he is “a respectful, honorable and honest bowler and person. If you beat me, you did it because you were better than me on the day and the same goes if I beat you. Simple as that.”

Nonetheless, the show will go on. 15 30-minute installments of the shootout will air Saturday at 11 a.m. Central time on ESPN, Sunday at 3 p.m., next Saturday at 3:30 p.m., and next Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

By Steven Dahlman | Loop North News | sdahlman@loopnorth.com

Published 23-Jun-11 2:17 AM

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