No. 1 Catholic High School dominated the lane transition of the third game to win 10 of the final 11 points in a 17.5-9.5 win over No. 4 Central on Monday afternoon in a pivotal high school bowling match at All-Star Lanes in Baton Rouge.
The win virtually puts a lock on the top seed for the undefeated Bears in the 32-team boys playoff field that will be finalized next week as the regular season comes to an end. No. 4 Central, which still has a match left in the regular season with McKinley, lost for the first time this season. The Wildcats fell to 10-1.
Catholic had to come from behind in the best-of-27-point scoring system where wins come not only from individual matches but team totals. Down, 8.5-7.5 and seven pins after two games, the Bears suddenly caught fire.
Most dominant and consistent points for Catholic High came in the three-four average spots in the lineup held down by Tommy Brock and Benham Herman. The two combined for six individual points and both topped 700 for the three-game series. Brock had games of 265, 235 and 214 for a 714 series by the 192-average bowler.
Herman, who came in with a 203 mark, had a 243, 279 and 235 for a 757 series.
“We knew it was going to be a close, tough match,” said longtime Catholic Coach Robin Deck. “We’ve been preparing, working on spares. This group has talent, drive and has worked hard. All of that has come together to put us in the position that we are in right now.”
Catholic finished with an 18-game scratch total of 3,781, a 210 average for the day. It was their third three-game series of more than 3,600 this season and in the past six games, they have posted four better than 1,200.
Central, which posted its second and third highest single team games in the opening two games of the match, got 2.5 points from leadoff bowler Chad Sanchez who had 641 with three 200 games. Andrew Coward had a 279 game as part of the 665 set for the Wildcats.
Catholic High (12-0) and No. 2 Central Lafourche (12-0) are the only two remaining undefeated teams in the state entering the playoffs.