Cooley Nominated for PBA Player of the Year Award

By Tenpin Bowling Australia
November 24, 2021

A stellar 2021 Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) season has awarded Sam Cooley a nomination for the prestigious Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year (POTY) award.

The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) recently announced the nominees selected for the PBA Tour’s four major end-of-season awards. The four awards are – Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year, Harry Golden PBA Rookie of the Year, Steve Nagy Sportsmanship Award, and the Tony Reyes Community Service Award.

The Chris Schenkel Player of the Year honour will award the PBA Tour’s top player.

This year’s nominees consist of the 2021 season’s top seven earners. Candidates in alphabetical order are Australia’s Sam Cooley; Tom Daugherty of Riverview, Fla., Canada’s Francois Lavoie; Shawn Maldonado of Houston; Anthony Simonsen of Little Elm, Texas; Kyle Troup of Taylorsville, N.C.; and Chris Via of Springfield, Ohio.

“It’s definitely an honour to be nominated for the Player of the Year award,” said Cooley.

“The hard work over the last few years is finally starting to pay off. However, at this level, it’s not enough. I need to continue with the effort and hard work because everyone is in the same boat. You have to keep working; otherwise, you will not succeed out there”.

Cooley had a season to remember in undoubtedly his most successful year on tour.

The 29-year-old Shellharbour Tenpin Bowl joined the PBA tour in 2015. Six years later, Cooley realised his dream by capturing his first career title – the PBA Cheetah Championship at the PBA World Series of Bowling XII in Tampa Bay, Florida.

The title was one of many impressive performances throughout the season, including two sixth places at both the USBC Masters and US Open before finishing runner up at the 2021 PBA Playoffs event cementing his name along with the seven top earners this season.  

The 2021 PBA Playoffs saw Sam go up against POTY frontrunner Kyle Troup in the final before being defeated three games to one. The highlight of the event saw Sam shoot a 300 game on TV. The 31st televised perfect game in PBA Tour history.  

With all the outstanding accomplishments in 2021, Sam remains realistic on his chances to eventually claim the 2021 POTY award when announced on Friday the 17th of December (Australian time).

“This year is very one-sided when you view the statistics,” explained Cooley.

“Moving forward into 2022, my goals are obviously to be in contention at every event and to put myself in better standing for future POTY awards”.

The PBA Player of the Year award will be selected by a panel of veteran bowling writers and the entire PBA membership.

Last year’s winners of the PBA’s four prestigious awards were fellow Australian Jason Belmonte, Player of the Year; Brad Miller, Nagy Sportsmanship Award, and Danny Wiseman, Tony Reyes Community Service Award. Unfortunately, there was no Harry Golden PBA Rookie of the Year for 2020 due to the complications created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tenpin Bowling Australia congratulates Sam on his nomination for the respected award as an acknowledgement of Sam’s extraordinary year on the lanes.

The Chris Schenkel Player of the Year award announcement is due to occur on Friday, the 17th of December (Australian time). Please follow the PBA for all the updates and other award winners announced below.

Award Announcement Dates (Australian time)

  • Tuesday, Dec. 14: Tony Reyes Community Service Award
  • Wednesday, Dec. 15: Steve Nagy Sportsmanship Award
  • Thursday, Dec. 16: Harry Golden Rookie of the Year
  • Friday, Dec. 17: Chris Schenkel Player of the Year

    Please note all the above dates are for when they occur in Australian time.


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