Erickson Reaches rare air

By on January 16, 2019
Warwick senior Isaac Erickson focuses as he releases the ball. He rolled an impressive 821 series in Monday’s match against CV. Photo by Kirk Neidermyer

Warwick senior Isaac Erickson focuses as he releases the ball. He rolled an impressive 821 series in Monday’s match against CV. Photo by Kirk Neidermyer

Bowls 821 series against CV

 

Whether he’s bowling a 300 or having an off-day, Isaac Erickson’s emotions don’t change.

“He controls himself so well,” Warwick coach Neal Vital said.

On Monday, the Warrior senior had every reason to be excited.

After all, how often does an 800 series happen?

Still, Erickson remained calm and collected.

And his poise was no doubt a big factor in helping him finish with an 821 in three games, including a 300 in Warwick’s Section Two match against Conestoga Valley at Dutch Lanes.

Besides being a personal-best series, it was the first time he had ever hit the 800 mark in his young career.

“I’m not sure I’d say I was in a zone because I was aware of everything that was happening,” Erickson said, “but I knew I was capable of of this type of game.”

In addition to Erickson’s 12 strikes in his perfect game, he combined for 10 other while rolling scores of 253 and 268 in his other two.

Although this was Erickson’s 10th career perfect game, it was the first time he bowled a 300 in a Warwick match.

“When I bowled the last ball,” Erickson said, “I had a pretty good feeling that I had the perfect game. You have to think that way.”

“Honestly, (Isaac) is a deep thinker as far as his bowling game,” Vital said. “He knows everything that he needs to know about his own personal game and he just got in the moment.”

As someone who has witnessed a lot of high school bowling matches in his career, having served as a Penn Manor assistant coach for seven years before taking over at Warwick in 2016, Vital recalls seeing only one other 800 series. The Comets’ Cody Simet achieved the feat with an 846 in 2013.

“It takes more than just one great game,” Vital said. “They’re rare. It’s sort of the pinnacle.”

It didn’t take long for the crowd at Dutch Lanes to become aware of Erickson’s hot hand.

“I don’t know how many in a row he threw to finish that first game,” Vital said, “but he’s a guy that when he gets locked in, he can really string strikes. A lot of times, on a day like that when you are throwing it so well, now it just depends on whether or not you get bad breaks and he did not.”

Warwick senior Tony Lutz had a solid day of his own, rolling a 685 series (277-186-222). Besides the pins he knocked down, though, he contributed in ways that didn’t show up in the box score.

“(Isaac’s) teammate and best friend on the team, Tony Lutz, sat with him the whole game and I was just observing,” Vital said. “There was nothing I needed to say, so I kinda just kept my eye on the two of them between shots while they were sitting together and Tony did a great job in maybe just keeping Isaac’s mind off of the 300 by just talking a little bit about his own bowling too.”

Tyler Miller added a 688 series for Warwick, including 10 straight strikes to end his third game while clinching a 288, and freshman Matt Geib helped out with a 607 series in his first varsity match, as the first-place Warriors improved to 54-2 with a 7-0 shutout out Conestoga Valley.

“These guys are pretty good,” Vital smiled.

The Warriors were certainly pretty good last Thursday against Elizabethtown at Clearview Lanes.

Although the second-place Bears snapped Warwick’s run of six straight shutouts to begin the L-L season, the Warriors still prevailed 5-2.

“Winning in their home center was satisfying,” Vital said. “I know the last game was close and we really wanted to get out of there with a sweep, but (E-town) is a strong team. They’re deep and tough to beat. So getting two out of three and winning the match 5-2, we’ll take that gladly.”

Ashley Sham (245-246-207) led the way for the Warriors with a 698 series, and Lutz added a 656.

In all, Warwick had five bowlers roll 600 or better, including Erickson (635), Carter Snavely (612) and Miller (600).

Vital acknowledged that Elizabethtown was a good measuring stick for his bowlers.

“We have Penn Manor next week, and we still have Cedar Crest and E-town again,” he said, “so our schedule is back-loaded this year, for sure.”

Asked what he learned about his team from facing the Bears, Vital said, “There was a little bit more pressure in that match and they bowled well. I used the term with them, ‘good, not great.’ And I would say that day, we were good, not great. They know exactly what I’m talking about when I say that, whether it’s their own individual performance or the team. We know we have some work to do as we get to these big matches here down the stretch and the post-season.”

Warwick Athletic Director Ryan Landis contributed to this article.

 

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