Keith Marzec, who started bowling at the age of 4 and has been bowling nearly every day since, was glad his father, Matt, was with him when he bowled his first 300 in the Stroh's Classic at Mil-Sher.
There are several reasons why 18-year-old Keith was excited about the presence of his father, a former classic league regular and one of the all-time area greats.
"Dad was subbing on my team, so it was great he was there," Keith said. "I also bowl with him regularly in the Corpus Christi AA League where we both average about 190."
Matt's all-time high series was a 771 at Sheridan last year. He has never shot a 300, although he has had a 299 and a 298. He won $11,000 in the 1976 Petersen Classic at Chicago. But he has limited his bowling to two leagues a week the last few years after 20 years as a regular in the classics, starting at age 18.
Matt seldom offers advice to his son while bowling.
"I'm a self-taught bowler, but whenever I have a problem on the lanes I go to dad or mom," said Keith, whose mother, Annette, averages 180 in the Airport's Bowlerettes.
Two of his younger brothers are off to good starts. Christopher, 15, is averaging 185 at Kenmore Lanes, while 8-year-old Andrew just reached the 100-average mark.
After his junior league and high school years at Kenmore West, Keith "graduated" to the adult ranks and was the youngest bowler ever to be selected for the Buffalo Area Bowling Council's Kickoff Tournament this past August.
At Kenmore West, he shot his career-high 749 series and also was captain in three sports -- bowling, baseball and golf. A 6-foot, 190-pounder, Keith was a catcher and batted .350 for the Blue Devils and had a 10 handicap in golf.
A freshman civil engineering student at UB, Keith is a regular on the Bulls' bowling team. He recently shot a nine-game 1,860 (207 average) series in the collegiate National Match Game Championships at St. Louis.