Nick Pate '17, Places 3rd at Go Bowling! PBA Indianapolis Open

Nick Pate '17, Places 3rd at Go Bowling! PBA Indianapolis Open

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Nick Pate made the most of his first television appearance in a Professional Bowlers Association event. Pate, a 2017 Midland University graduate and former Warrior bowler, placed third at the Go Bowling! PBA Indianapolis Open on February 29th at Royal Pin Woodland. It was the highest PBA showing for Pate, who has bowled in more than 50 PBA events since earning his card in 2018.

His successful run through the tournament has Pate believing bigger accomplishments may await him down the road. “Once you start to have some success on the tour, you begin to feel like you belong,” he said. “Now, I know what to expect in these situations. My mind is where I need it to be and I feel like I’m ready to win.”

Pate’s steady play throughout the event allowed him to post a 233 average through qualifying rounds as he earned the fourth seed for the televised stepladder format. That momentum carried into the opening round as he defeated Tom Smallwood 227-164. Pate then topped third-seeded Anthony Simonsen 226-213 to reach the semifinals, where he was defeated by Shawn Maldanado 246-230. Jesper Svensson upended Maldanado to earn the championship.

A big reason for Pate’s success extends beyond the alley. He said getting locked in on the mental side of his game has played a major role in elevating his level of performance. “My mental game is where it needs to be and that’s been a big change for me this year,” Pate said. “I talked with some of my representatives and they told me I needed to change my approach, or it wasn’t going to work for me. I had to take a step back and rethink what I was doing. As a result, my mental game is at an all-time high. I work on keeping my mind clear because if you don’t, it will take a toll on you.”

That advice came in handy as he prepared for his first television appearance. “It was my first live show, so it was a little intimidating,” he said. “But I feel like I handled myself well, and now I’ve got that experience. I just had to remain very process-oriented. It’s tough to bowl on TV, but I’m glad I was able to put up some good numbers.”

The 2017 IBMA Collegiate Bowler of the Year, Pate said he heard from several former Midland teammates following his third-place finish. His performance came on the heels of another former Warrior standout, Perry Crowell IV, finishing fourth at the U.S. Open a week earlier. “The support has been incredible and I’m grateful for everyone who reached out to me,” Pate said. “Perry and I were teammates at Midland, and on Team USA, and he’s played a big part in helping me become the bowler I am today.”

Living in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, Pate works part-time during the week but is afforded the opportunity to travel to nearly all of the PBA events. Only 25, he is one of the rising stars on the tour and is optimistic his recent performance can serve as a springboard for the rest of the season. “It’s crazy to think I was bowling on primetime television and I’m not sure it’s sunk in yet,” Pate said. “I’ll learn from those matches and see what I can do better. When I’m playing my “A” game, I’m confident I can beat anyone.”