Steven Welsh sent the 7-pin wobbling in the 12th frame, but his bid for perfection fell short when it refused to fall, giving the Patchogue-Medford senior a 299 in Game 1 of a 728 series Thursday against Bayport-Blue Point at Bowl Long Island in Patchogue.
He said he joked with his teammate Joey Guido during the fifth frame that this may happen. The idea crept into his head because Guido, a freshman, rolled a 299 in the second game Wednesday against Connetquot.
“At first you think it’s the end of the world, you just got a 299,” Welsh said, adding that he thought his final shot would be a strike. “I thought about it again and I said, that’s really good and it was really good for my team. We shot a really good team score of 1,224.”
Patchogue-Medford improved to 10-2 with its 1,224-1,032, 1,006-884, 931-936 win, and hasn’t had much to complain about this season — nearly-perfect games aside.
Raiders coach Bob Sconone said his lineup is mostly young, but strong and balanced. He added that a win over East Islip on Dec. 16 was especially impressive.
Welsh leads the team with a 223.8 average and his teammates aren’t far behind. Sophomores James Fernandez and Jake Scala have a 207 and 204, and Guido has a 193 average.
“It’s been the best season that we’ve had in my history as bowling coach and this is my 26th season,” Sconone said. “They’re just all bowling well at the right time. The confidence is there, that’s the thing. The ball comes out of your hand a little bit better and the next thing you know you start carrying more strikes.”
Added Sconone: “We have Eat Islip on Tuesday and then we have Central Islip to finish up the (regular season). They’re just getting better and better.”