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Photo courtesy of PBA50 Tour Facebook page.

Norm Duke of Clermont, Florida, seeking his first PBA50 Tour title of the 2019 season, advanced from fourth place into the lead in the PBA50 Northern California Classic presented by MOTIV title Monday at Harvest Park Bowl.

Duke, a five-time PBA Tour titlist, rolled games of 243, 168, 248, 229, 254, 279 and 248 Monday for an eight-game total of 1,904 and a 16-game total of 3,836 pins – a 239.75 average – to take a 45-pin lead over former major league baseball pitcher John Burkett of Fort Worth, Texas.

Duke, 55, earlier this year won his 39th and 40th titles in Go Bowling! PBA Tour competition to become the third player in PBA Tour history to win 40 titles. In his two PBA50 Tour appearances in 2019, he finished fifth in the season-opening PBA50 Johnny Petraglia BVL Open in Clearwater, Florida, and third in the PBA50 National Championship in The Villages, Florida.

Burkett, 54, is trying for his first PBA50 Tour title in his fifth year as a “senior” player. Burkett, who grew up bowling in the Pittsburgh area, finished fourth in the 2015 Northern California Classic for his best career PBA50 Tour finish.

Bob Rosenau of Redding, California, retained third place with 3,778 pins. He was followed by Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Oxford, Florida, with a 3,769 total and Parker Bohn III of Jackson, New Jersey, with 3,734 pins.

Tuesday’s five-game cashers round begins at 8 a.m. Pacific followed by two eight-game modified round robin match play rounds to determine the top five players for the stepladder finals at 6:30 p.m.

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