Kellie Sandas doesn’t have the word losing in her vocabulary.
The four-year member of the Kellenberg girls bowling team went undefeated in her first three seasons and needed just one more victory for a four-peat.
Sandas bowled a 185 in Game 2 and a 190 in Game 3 of a 559 series to lead Kellenberg past St. Anthony’s, 5-4, in the CHSAA team championship Saturday at Wantagh Lanes. The Firebirds outscored the Friars by 24 pins, 2,487-2,463.
"It’s an unbelievable accomplishment, but it’s not just me. I had amazing teammates around me all four years to help get to this point," Sandas said. "It’s an honor, and I have faith that these next group of girls can carry on that winning legacy."
Kellenberg (12-0) collected its fifth straight title and won its 48th consecutive match. It’s a streak that began in 2017.
"For the girls to achieve that, it’s on them. The coaches are here to support them in everything they do, but the girls are the ones who are going out there and executing," Allyson Frisina said. "Our seniors have been on the team for three or four years and did not lose a match. It’s really incredible."
Sandas and Ava Kaiser have been on the team since freshman year and Shannon Pepe joined as a sophomore. Each bowler served as captain this season.
St. Anthony’s got off to a quick start, collecting two match points in Game 1 to take an early lead. Natalie Stalhut had a match-high 194 in the opening game of a 520 series for the Friars (8-4).
Frisina pulled her team aside prior to the second game.
"I just told them to relax, have fun and bowl like they have all season," Frisina said. "They definitely stepped up, got into a rhythm and were able to come together."
Kellenberg answered quickly in Game 2, picking up two points to tie the score. They took an 18-pin advantage into the final game.
"I was doing the math in my head and trying to figure things out. I don’t know if the girls were though," said Frisina, who won her sixth title in nine years as Kellenberg head coach. "I told them to just focus on the match. It ultimately came down to them make their spares and striking when needed."