The 300 Club … and Tyler Brockney
By John Burbridge
CHARLES CITY — The “300 Club” of league/tournament bowlers who have rolled perfect games this fall-winter season at Comet Bowl is now five strong.
Tyler Brockney is not included.
It started back on Oct. 16 when Brody Stone was the first to reach perfection this season while holding up the Charles City Press bowling team in Wednesday Night 10-Pin Heaven action.
The second came on Dec. 1 compliments of Charles City High School assistant bowling coach Tyler Mitchell, who got his while rolling with the Sunday Night Mixed League.
Brad Cline followed with a string of 12 strikes in one game on Feb. 6 while competing in the City Tournament on way to winning the Singles and All-Events categories in the B Division.
Then in consecutive weeks — Feb. 12 and 19 — in 10-Pin Heaven play, Justin McIntire and Alex George respectively bowled their 300 games.
For all five bowlers, it was their first competitive perfect game.
Brockney is still waiting for his. On Feb. 12, the same night McIntire bowled his 300, Brockney thought his belated time was finally coming.
“I felt pretty good going into the third game,” said Brockney, a right-hander. “The ball was coming out of my hand nice.”
Alas, going into the ninth frame with eight “X’s” behind him, Brockney left a 4-pin and wound up with a 268.
It’s not that Brockney isn’t capable of stringing 12 strikes in a row. In fact, on that night Brockney threw 17 straight strikes starting his string in the fourth frame of the second game.
Overall, Brockney threw 30 strikes that night on way to an 815 series — the second 800 of his career in as many years.
“I was hoping to get the house record for the highest series,” said Brockney, who needed a 295 in the final game to eclipse the longtime Comet Bowl series mark of 841 set by Tony Slinger.
With Slinger, Brockney is one of only four bowlers to have recorded a sanctioned 800 series at Comet Bowl.
And Brockney is the only one who has done it twice.
That just makes Brockney’s sans-300 distinction more peculiar.
Most serious bowlers will tell you that an 800 three-game series is more prestigious — and likewise more rare — than a 300 game. Most 800 series have one or two perfect games within them.
As common among the uncommon few bowlers who have achieved both award scores, the 300 game is usually achieved first and maybe a few extra times after that before a series pinfall of 800 or better is finally put together.
Brockney may not be the only league bowler in the history of tenpins to have ever recorded two 800 series before rolling a 300 game, but — to borrow a witty remark from the late “Bum” Phillips when he described his superstar running back Earl Campbell … “He may not be in a class by himself, but whatever class he’s in, it doesn’t take long to call roll.”
“I think I’ll eventually bowl one,” said Brockney, whose high game is a 290, “but I like to continue to be consistent. A perfect game is just one game. You need to bowl three good games for an 800.”