John "Johnny" Petraglia (born March 3, 1947) was born in Brooklyn, New York, and now hails from Jackson, New Jersey. He is best known as a left-handed bowler and member of the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA), where he won 14 tour titles. He has also won eight Senior PBA Tour titles. He is a member of both the PBA and USBC Halls of Fame.
Petraglia joined the PBA in 1965, and won his first tour title at Fort Smith, Arkansas in 1966 when he was just 19 years old. A week later, Petraglia left the PBA Tour to join the United States Army during the Vietnam War. He served as an Army Specialist 5 in Long Binh and Bien Hoa from 1967-68.
His best season as a pro came in 1971, when he won five titles in all. That year included consecutive wins in the last three tournaments of the season—culminated by a major championship in the Firestone Tournament of Champions. Petraglia remains the only PBA bowler to win three consecutive televised tournaments. Petraglia would win two more majors: the 1977 BPAA U.S. Open and 1980 PBA National Championship, making him one of only six players to earn the PBA career "Triple Crown." (Billy Hardwick, Mike Aulby, Pete Weber, Norm Duke and Chris Barnes are the others.) The 1980 event featured one of the more dramatic final matches in major tournament history, as Petraglia rolled four consecutive strikes in the 9th and 10th frames to secure the victory.
In 1994, after many figured his regular tour career was over, the 47-year-old Petraglia rolled the PBA's seventh televised perfect 300 game to defeat Walter Ray Williams, 300-194. He did not, however, go on to win the title match.
Petraglia is one of only two bowlers (joining Dick Weber) to win at least one regular or Senior PBA Tour title in six different decades. However, Weber's final title was in a PBA Regional event. After his victory in the PBA Senior Dayton Classic on May 17, 2012, Petraglia is the only bowler in history to win a national PBA Tour title in six different decades.
In the media
In a sport where most bowlers frequently change equipment affiliations, Petraglia has remained associated with Brunswick Corporation since 1971. Numerous Brunswick bowling balls and other products have borne his name over the years. There was also a recent PBA Tour stop named after him—The Johnny Petraglia Open in North Brunswick, NJ.
Awards and recognition
- Inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame in 1982
- Inducted into USBC Hall of Fame in May, 2009
- Served three terms as PBA President (1979–80, 1989–90 and 1997–98)
- Was ranked #16 on the PBA's 2008 list of "50 Greatest Players of the Last 50 Years"
- Staff. "Hurd and Petraglia the team to beat in Reno", Professional Bowlers Association. January 13, 1999. Accessed November 15, 2008.
- Vint, Bill. "Roth, Petraglia, Macpherson elected to USBC Hall of Fame."
- Article: "Bowling Hall-of-Famer and Vietnam Vet Johnny Petraglia Joins Bowlers to Veterans Link," The Bowlers to Veterans Link, www.bowlforveterans.org
- Vint, Bill. "Johnny Petraglia wins PBA East Senior Regional, Joins Dick Weber with PBA Titles in Six Decades." Article at www.pba.com on September 13, 2010.
- Schneider, Jerry. "Johnny Petraglia Wins PBA Senior Dayton Classic Achieving Milestone of Winning PBA Titles in Six Decades." Article at www.pba.com on May 17, 2012.