Andrew's Nicholas Guziak approaches the line for the Andrew Boys Bowling Sectionals at Orland Bowl, Saturday, January 25th, 2014, in Orland Park. | Gary Middendorf/For Sun-Times Media
If Saturday’s duel between Minooka and Lockport at the Andrew Sectional was a sign of things to come at state, both teams have plenty to look forward to.
Putting up huge scores all day at Orland Bowl, the defending state champion Porters and Minooka – which finished fourth in the state last year – battled to the end, with Minooka rallying in the sixth and final game to claim the team title with 6,510 pins, 49 more than Lockport.
Both teams easily qualified for the state meet, which begins Friday in O’Fallon. Morgan Park (6,331), Oswego (6,286), Andrew (6,270) and Bolingbrook (6,240) also advanced.
It was a dream day for Minooka’s Zach Segatto, who rolled a 300 in Game 1 and never looked back, finishing with 1,503 pins to take the individual crown by 100 over Bremen’s Russell Deer.
“Starting the day with a 300 definitely made the day go by a lot easier for me,” he said. “I just kept going from there. Our team put up a (1,221) in the first game, which was huge. It really set the tone.”
Chris Dombrowski (5th, 1,360) and Kai Devine (9th, 1,341) also had big days for Minooka, Divine tossing a 300 in Game 3.
Lockport, which held a 47-pin lead entering the final game before the Indians put up a 1,057 to surpass it, rode a balanced effort led by Noah Zwit (10th, 1,333) and Brian Baer (17th, 1,318).
The Porters, who won state with an entire team of seniors last year and struggled early this season, appear to be peaking at the perfect time.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” Baer said. “Everyone told us we couldn’t do it this year, and here we are. We all grew up watching this team get to state, and now we’ve made it ourselves.”
Deer, who said he’d never before finished in the top two in a high school tournament, tossed a 279 and a 267 on his way to the runner-up finish.
“It’s an awesome feeling,” he said. “I did everything I wanted to today. I was able to make adjustments by watching other bowlers and it paid off.”
Jabari Johnson (6th, 1,359) and Byron Lawson (11th, 1,332) led Morgan Park.
“In the past, any time a (Chicago Public League) team made it to state, everyone said it was because they were in an easy sectional,” Lawson said. “We had a chip on our shoulder and we wanted to prove we could compete with these teams.”
Andrew, sitting in eighth after an 888 in Game 5, shot 1,115 in the final game to rally to advance.
Advancing individually were Deer, Lincoln-Way West’s Josh Glover (3rd, 1,377), Romeoville’s Dakota Vostry (4th, 1,372), Tinley Park’s Nick Shupryt (8th, 1,348), T.F. South’s Taveon Roberson (12th, 1,328), Lincoln-Way North’s Kyle Pijarowski (13th, 1,326) and Southland College Prep’s Perry Sibby (14th, 1,324).