Lower Burrell teenager rolls 300 game in traveling bowling league
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Before his final throw even reached the pins, Matt Bielata became emotional.
“When I threw the last ball, my dad said it was a perfect ball. He knew it was going to be a strike,” Bielata said. “I started to cry happy tears.”
In this case, tears of perfection.
On Sunday, Bielata rolled a perfect game at the Brunswick Playmor Bowl in West Mifflin during traveling league play.
“When he turned around, he was bawling,” coach Walt Livingstone said. “His dad was crying. His mom was crying.”
Even at 13, the Lower Burrell native knows how special rolling a 300 game can be.
“That's a goal for all the kids. (At that age) we tell the parents when its time to move up to a more aggressive ball and style,” Livingstone said. “(A 300 game is) just a matter of time for a lot of these kids.”
The closest Bielata had previously come was a 241 last year, but he knew something big was potentially on the horizon when the atmosphere late in his game was different.
“I was just really nervous. The most strikes I've had in a row was six,” Bielata said. “When I got seven, I started to get nervous.”
Initially, the only people interested in lanes 23 and 24 were competitors and parents.
It wasn't long before a crowd of more than 100 began to gather.
“When he threw it, you would have thought you were at a football game,” Livingstone said. “We pack a lot of people in to watch.”
All of the spectators, and competitors were there for a match in the Greater Pittsburgh Youth Travel League. It is comprised of teams from various leagues across the Pittsburgh area. It is just the second year that Wildlife Lanes in Lower Burrell has fielded a team. This year, the rink has two teams.
Bielata originally took up the game around age 4.
“My dad used to bowl in Natrona Heights. I just wanted to follow him,” Bielata said. “I started there on bumpers.”
It was only a few years ago when Bielata began taking bowling seriously enough to give up on Little League baseball to concentrate on bowling.
His aspirations already go well beyond his youth endeavors.
“I want to keep going with it. There's a bowling team at (Burrell),” Bielata said. “I'd love to go to Robert Morris for bowling.”
Dave Yohe is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Former Highmark CEO sues health insurer for $32 million
- Pitt’s Bisnowaty ‘ready to go’ but may not start vs. Youngstown State
- Highmark Health reports $171M operating loss for 1st half of year
- Inmate charged with smuggling drugs into Westmoreland prison
- Asking price for Penguins franchise said to be at a record $750M
- Steelers accomplish mission to get younger, faster on defense
- Brady free to play after judge rules against NFL in ‘Deflategate’
- 4-year-old transplant recipient Angelo Giorno from Derry on life support, family says
- 2 arrested after Jeannette raid turns up heroin, crack, gun
- Dukes kick off conference play on national television
- Fifth Third Bank selling Pittsburgh branches to First National