By Jennifer Roback
On June 21, 2022, Erin McCarthy was able to successfully climb the stepladder at the U.S. Women's Open to claim her first major title and her second Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour title.
McCarthy claimed the win after defeating Danielle McEwan 212-172 in the final match and also became the fifth bowler this season to successfully climb the stepladder to capture a win.
“Fifty-six games plus these are grueling,” McCarthy said after the match. “You’ve got bad games and really good games. The highs and lows of the tournament, it is beyond stressful. There were a lot of nerves, but even more nerves in that final game. I just really focused on one shot at a time. I made sure that my feet were slow because if my feet were slow, everything else should align appropriately. To make it here to the top, this is the greatest moment of my life. This is going to be something that I never, ever forget.”
In the opening match, the right-hander faced Singapore’s Shayna Ng and won 212-178 to move on to Match 2, where she faced two-time PWBA Player of the Year Shannon O’Keefe.
In true championship style, McCarthy and O'Keefe's match came down to the final frame, when O'Keefe needed two strikes and eight pins to advance. After securing the first two strikes, she failed to get the final eight pins and left a 4-6-7-9-10 split to fall 218-220.
McCarthy then faced No. 2 Jordan Richard and secured her third win of the night after defeating her 235-206.
While this win might be McCarthy's first major win, she is no stranger to the U.S. Women's Open championship stepladder. She previously recorded top-five finishes in the 2017 and 2018 events.
“This feels absolutely incredible,” McCarthy continued. “I think from my past two U.S. Open shows, I learned what not to do for this one. I rushed a lot during those shows. The 10 frames go by super quick, and I'm a quick bowler to begin with, so I forced myself to stay slow during the show. Last night, I went to bed and thought about what I was going to do differently today. I did everything differently today than I did on those last two shows, and it paid off.”
Some of the ladies of the PWBA Tour will now head to Houston, Texas, for the PBA/PWBA Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles July 28-31 before wrapping up the season with the PWBA Classic Series in August.