On July 31 at the All-American Fun Park in Albany, a large crowd gathered around Travis Eaddy and roared when he completed his perfect game. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
ALBANY — Travis Eaddy had been dreaming about bowling a perfect game for years.
In fact, the 19-year-old had the moment all planned out in his head.
“What I thought I was going to do was just fall on the floor,” Eaddy said. “I always said that when I bowled my first 300, I was going to fall on the floor and be like, ‘Yes! I finally did it.’ ”
But when that moment finally arrived July 31 in Albany’s All-American Fun Park, all Eaddy could do was stand in awe.
“Then I turned around, and everybody was giving me high-fives,” Eaddy said Tuesday after he was presented a trophy by the Fun Park staff for his accomplishment. “The first thing I said was, ‘I’ve gotta go call my dad.’
“I said, ‘Dad, I bowled my first 300.’ He said, ‘You did what?’ He was at church working at the time, and I just heard him scream.”
Little did Eaddy know, he made a little bit of history in the process.
According to James Blackwell, the Bowling Center manager and coordinator at the All-American Fun Park, Eaddy became the youngest youth — which is defined by the United States Bowling Congress as 21 and younger — in Albany to bowl a perfect game. Based on records from the USBC’s local chapter, he’s also the first youth in Albany since 1995 and the first youth in the history of the Fun Park to bowl a 300.
His perfect game was the 14th in the three-year history of competitive bowling at the Fun Park and came one night after Rodney Brown bowled one.
Eaddy, who graduated from Westover and is currently enrolled at Albany State studying criminal justice, began bowling eight years ago and has thrown thousands of frames.
But none of them compares to the 10 perfect frames — 12 throws and 12 strikes — that he put together July 31.
“It takes the weight off your shoulders knowing you had accomplished something like that, so the next time you get up to that point and get ready to bowl another one, it will be easier,” said Eaddy, whose average score is around 207.
He came close to perfection three years ago when he started a game with 10 strikes before nerves got the best of him on his 11th throw, and he ended with a 288.
His nerves were also there three weeks ago, too.
“The sixth frame I completely missed where I needed to hit for a strike, but the (pins) just happened to fall,” he said. “The same thing happened again in the eighth frame. I guess it was because of nerves, because I started thinking about it.”
He tried to go through his normal routine when he was down to his last ball.
“When I picked up the ball the last frame, I didn’t hesitate or anything because I knew that would throw me off,” Eaddy said. “I went through the same routine: got the ball, made sure my hands were dry and wiped off my shoes. I stood there, like, two seconds, started walking and threw it.”
Blackwell said a crowd had started to gather around Eaddy’s lane as his strike-count increased, but like a perfect game in baseball, nobody was saying a word to Eaddy.
“You don’t want to put any pressure on anybody, so you are silently like, ‘Hey, look at how he’s bowling over there,’ ” Blackwell said. “There were probably 45 people paying close attention and holding their breath watching him. It exploded (when he threw the final strike). There was a roar and applause.”