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Family tradition rolls on

October 23, 2002

You might say that Brian Conrad grew up in a bowling house.

His mother, Debbie Conrad, has had a long, outstanding career in duckpin bowling. She recently took part in the national women's pro tour 20th anniversary invitational event.

His grandfather, James "Jimmy" Wolfensberger, is a living legend in the duckpin sport and is a member of the Washington County Sports Hall of Fame.

Conrad, a native Hagerstonian who now lives in Greencastle, Pa., added to the family's legacy by rolling a 300 game Oct. 3 in the Thursday Night Men's League at Nellie Fox Bowl in Chambersburg, Pa.

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It was Conrad's first-ever perfect game, topping his previous best of 298 (part of an 803 series) on Sept. 21, 1999, at Southside Bowl in Hagerstown.

Conrad, 32, began bowling at age 6 on the duckpin lanes and - in a break from family tradition - switched to tenpin league bowling eight years ago. He bowls in the Tuesday Night Mixed League at Southside as well as the Thursday league at Nellie Fox Bowl, and carries a 201 average.

His perfect game came in the second game of a 192-300-213 - 705 series.

"All the balls were in the pocket. It seemed to be a good game like some start out," he recalled. "And I just tried to stay consistent and focused. On the last ball, I hit it high and the 4 pin took the longest to fall. At that time is when you finally start breathing again."

And it was time to tell the family.

"The first call was to my wife (Linda), who couldn't be with me that night," he said, "then to my granddad, who told me just a week earlier that my 300 game was coming soon."

Brian and Linda, who is also a native of Hagerstown, moved to Greencastle after their marriage in February. He works as a surveyor for Dewberry & Davis in Gaithersburg, Md.

Conrad will receive a ring from the American Bowling Congress for rolling a 300 game.

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