(John Spytek photo)
Columbia High School junior Cameron Touchette made his third straight trip to the IHSA state bowling tournament a memorable one over the weekend, placing fifth overall with a 225 average at St. Clair Bowl in Fairview Heights.
Touchette placed seventh in the state as a freshman and, after not placing among the leaders last year, he posted his best state finish this time around.
What’s more, he still has one more shot at a state title next season.
“If he continues growing as an individual and as a bowler, he should go far in this sport,” Columbia bowling coach Bruce Jeffery told the Republic-Times.
Touchette capped off another successful season Saturday at the top of his game. He was in 50th place overall following Friday’s qualifying action, rolling a 1,245 series for an average of 207. He was 21st as an individual not on a team, earning a spot in the finals.
On Saturday, Touchette started putting things together and shot very well in the morning session with games of 279, 244 and 258. In the afternoon, he kept going strong and rolled games of 201, 225 and 247, good for fifth place.
“His recent success has been his determination to become a great bowler,” Jeffery said. “He practices on his own a lot and it is usually a quality practice. I have watched him to start to mature both as a bowler and as an individual over the past few years.”
Touchette began the postseason in style, placing first overall at the Cahokia Regional on Jan. 17. He averaged a 222 for the day with high games of 248, 226 and 223.
He also bowled well at the sectional in Carterville on Jan. 24, placing second overall with an average of 220. He rolled high games of 265, 232 and 223 to advance to state yet again.