Boys Bowling: Matejcak leads Lockport to first state title
By Steve Millar For Sun-Times Media January 26, 2013 9:52PM
Updated: February 28, 2013 6:43AM
As a young bowler in Lockport’s program, Shane Matejcak saw the Porters’ Kyle Anderson win back-to-back individual state championships in 2010-11 and dreamed of following in his footsteps.
Saturday, Matejcak not only lived out that dream, he did something Anderson never could.
While rolling to the individual crown, Matejcak led the Porters to their first team state title, as Lockport rallied over the final three games to finish with a total 12-game pinfall of 12,846, 74 pins better than runner-up O’Fallon at St. Clair Bowl in O’Fallon.
“It was my dream to do this and it’s just setting it that it happened,” Matejcak said. “I never gave up. I made sure I picked up my spares and the team was behind me all the time.”
Leading after Friday’s opening six games, Matejcak was never really threatened Saturday. He opened the day with a 248, tossed a 257 in Game 4 and a 264 in Game 5 and finished with 2,924 (a 243.7 average) to top Salem’s Dylan Plahm by 105 pins.
The team race was more dramatic. Lockport sat in third entering Saturday’s afternoon session, but while other contenders faltered down the stretch, the Porters rose to the occasion.
A 1,092 in Game 4 gave them the lead, and scores of 1,078 and 1,051 in the final two games were good enough to hold on.
“It’s awesome,” Lockport coach Jeff Wyatt said. “All eight of our bowlers at state were seniors. They worked their butts off to win it. It couldn’t have happened to a better group of seniors.”
Brian Hodolitz (17th, 2,601), Alex Wilmsen (39th, 2,529) David Wysocki, Larry Novak, Jonny Kamba, Patrick Karli and Matt Davis also contributed for the Porters.
“I’m so proud of the team, “ Matejcak said. “We bonded together as a team. We fought until the end and we pulled out what we wanted.”
Oak Lawn, behind Ryan Kirby (13th, 2,615) and Ken VandeWerken (25th, 2,578) took fifth, its best finish since a fourth-place showing in 2003.
“Early (Friday) we were in 16th place,” Oak Lawn coach Kevin McKeown said. “Then we just kept improving. We bowled well over our season average. I couldn’t be any prouder of our guys.”
Lincoln-Way West junior Josh Glover (2,712) finished fifth individually.
“I was a little nervous (Friday),” he said. “(Saturday), I got more comfortable and I got confidence and I think I did pretty good.”
Andrew (12,416), last year’s champion, finished eighth.
Marist’s Pete Switalski (2,623) finished 11th and T.F. South’s Anthony Pena (2,609) 14th. Andrew’s Justin Finnen (2,569) and Kyle Krol (2,565) were 28th and 29th, respectively.