INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Finland's Osku Palermaa left a 7-10 split on his first shot of the day, converted the so-called impossible split and carried that momentum into the lead Thursday night in the PBA Tournament of Champions at Woodland Bowl.
Palermaa had a 29-pin lead over Pete Weber of St. Ann, Mo., when Weber left a 7-10 split in the 10th frame of his final match, which he was unable to convert, costing him a chance to overtake the Finnish two-handed star after four rounds in the major tournament.
Palermaa, a three-time PBA Tour champion and winner of the 2011 PBA World Championship, averaged 240.56 through his first 32 games, but struggled through the opening round of match play Thursday night, winning four of his eight matches to finish with a total of 7,818 pins.
Weber, who can tie the PBA record for most major championships if he wins his 10th title this week, had a 5-3 match-play record and finished with 7,789 pins.
''I left a 7-10 split in my first frame and converted it, and that's the way my day started,'' Palermaa said. ''It was a good omen. To be honest, I've probably converted the 7-10 more times than I have bowled 300 games - and I have a few of those - but it was a good day.
''I felt like I bowled better physically Wednesday, but I scored better today. Yesterday, I made the right moves, but I didn't make big enough moves. Today the moves were smaller, but I made them pair to pair and I stayed right on top of things.''
But Palermaa saw his 146-pin third-round lead over Australia's Jason Belmonte shrink to 29 pins in the evening session.
''I made a few bad shots,'' Palermaa said. ''I felt like I had no ball reaction, but I got away with three wins. I should have bowled better.''
Sean Rash of Montgomery, Ill., was third at 7,724, followed by Belmonte at 7,688.
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- Osku Palermaa
- PBA Tournament of Champions
- Pete Weber