Pro Bowlers Tour – 1979 Long Island Open highlights

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Top seed Earl Anthony meets Cliff McNealy in the final match of the 1979 Long Island Open. It would be Anthony's first title since his heart attack on June 20th, 1978. Earlier in the telecast (not seen here), Tom Baker makes his first national TV appearance, defeating Joe Berardi, before falling to 3 seed Cliff McNeely, who goes on to defeat 2 seed Mark Roth to advance to the final. This telecast also came days after Nelson Burton, Jr. and Dave Soutar had been voted into the PBA Hall of Fame. Chris Schenkel on play-by-play. Nelson Burton, Jr. on color. Garden City Bowl, Garden City, NY. March 31, 1979

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23 Comments on “Pro Bowlers Tour – 1979 Long Island Open highlights”

  1. Earl as confident as ever, backswing a little higher than before the heart attack. Earl always bowled well at Budy Russell’s lanes.

  2. Was there a special weather bulletin on 3:06 about a tornado warning for the following counties and what abc affiliate call letters is on channel 8?

  3. Dont’ know if it’s so much AMF pin action – McNeely was playing pretty deep, so that would dull some of the pin action.

    Garden City is kind of odd – they have sort of shallow flat gutters, and you can pop the corner pins well. The sideboards are not terribly lively, so you really have to be throwing it well to sling pins around.

  4. They very well could be; AMF owns Garden City Lanes now and the place could use some TLC. It’s one of the last AMF properties on Long Island that hasn’t.

  5. Earl was smooth, under control and consistent. He was the best.

    I am making the one hour drive to Dublin, Ca. tomorrow to watch the Earl Anthony memorial tournament at the bowling center he owned.

    RIP Earl.

    Saratoga, Ca.

  6. A Classic From 1979!! Nobody underestimated Earl Anthony in bowling under any circumstances. A Solid 6!!

  7. Although Nelson Burton, Jr. was on the PBA tour for years, he got into the PBA Hall Of Fame (as noted at the start of this clip) for his broadcasting.

    Chris Schenekel is also in the PBA Hall of Fame, and very deservingly so.

  8. What was the “Weather Bulletin” slide at 3:05 of this clip about??

    “Bowling Pins Rapidly Falling On Long Island! Stay Clear!”

  9. It was Springtime in North Texas (Dallas-Fort Worth), so I’m sure it was some kind of crazy thunderstorms or tornados moving through the areas. That area was (and is) prone to severe weather every Spring.

  10. I agree. However, I really believe, unfortunately, that it’s more than that. Demographics change, certainly, but society has changed, too, and not necessarily for the better. Is it the PBA or the WWF?
    As if the “crotch chop” wasn’t bad enough, now we have “celebrity” team owners (what a joke) hurling themselves down the lane after a victory. Well, pardon me if I sound a little too buttoned-shirt establishment here (lol), but that kind of crap belongs … let’s just say somewhere else.

  11. I tend to agree with you both. That said, there are hopeful signs. For instance, there were no high school bowling teams when I was growing up in the ’60s. There are today (and college teams, too). Just like Apple did when they put Mac computers in schools, you grow it with the youth. Then when they grow up, they expect it to be there. The problem for the PBA reached critical mass when ABC-TV cancelled Pro Bowlers Tour. The PBA has been scrambling to gain visibility (and viability) ever since.

  12. Classic Earl. Whatever happened to Cliff McNealy?
    He was a master of playing deep inside shots and seemed to always mske shows playing near the left gutter.

    1. I was in the East Bay 900 Travel league in the bay area in 1970-72 and i remember Cliff quite well. One Sunday were were Bowling 8 team shifts at diamond lanes and McNealy was on 1-2 and punching the wall, bloodying his knuckles! He was a great bowler!

  13. Despite Nelson Burton’s enthusiasm for Earl’s “new” game, Earl would not win again for almost a year (350 days).

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