SYRACUSE — The start of Nick Giovanniello’s season was perfect.
And the ending wasn’t so bad either.
West Babylon’s Giovanniello bowled a 1,301 series with a high game of 249 in the fifth to lead the Suffolk all-stars to a third-place finish at the state tournament at Strike 'N Spare Lanes. The Suffolk team finished with 6,236 pins. Section I won the event with a total of 6,483.
“It was great to get a fresh start at the beginning of the year and be able to roll a 300,” Giovanniello said about opening his season with a perfect game. “You can’t really get any better than that — there’s stuff to still work for but you already accomplished your ultimate one game goal.”
The Suffolk team came in with plenty of firepower— team members Steven Russell of Central Islip and Kyle Perillo of Smithtown had 300 games earlier this season.
“Throwing a 300 just comes down to bowling your shot,” Giovanniello said. “It’s all mental — you can bowl 10 frames and open all of them or get strikes on all of them. It’s just about closing frames and coming out with the success in the end.”
Commack senior Avery Lugares was the second highest scorer for Suffolk, rolling a 244 in the fourth game as part of a 1,270 series.
“I had a couple of hiccups today but I had to just move past that,” Lugares said. “In the end just coming here and being a part of the team was always something I wanted to do. It was really great.”
Lugares said he had some early jitters but worked through it.
“I was definitely nervous in the beginning and it was hot down there and my hand was sweating,” he said.
They also had to work through tougher oil patterns then they were used to on the lanes in Suffolk and the overall hustle and bustle of the tournament.
“I would say the breakdown is the most difficult part,” Lugares said. “Just on our pair alone it was a big transition since we had to move and we had to change our ball.”
“It’s 100-percent different here,” Giovanniello said. “You don’t have as much miss-room outside or inside and it makes it much tougher than in the regular season.”
Although the Suffolk team was unable to defend its title it was still a successful day going up against tough conditions.
“I had hoped to make this team since I was a freshman,” Lugares said. “And today I had a really great time.”