Senior night was very much worth celebrating for Morris on Tuesday, as it bowled a series-best 3,581 to defeat Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference opponent DeKalb and its 2,995.
Two Redskins had the best series of their careers, though only one was competing at Echo Lanes for the final time in competition. Junior Taylor Warwick's 727 series was the high from either team, and senior Skylar Easson followed with a 648, her personal best.
After bowling four strikes in a row and six total during a 216 first game, Warwick had strikes in every frame but the first and the 10th in Game 2, totaling a 266. She started the final game with a turkey and had another starting in the fifth frame on her way to a 245.
"I was eight pins away from a 700 a few weeks ago. ... Even when I had my 300, I wasn't even close to a 700," Warwick said. "[The first ball in the fourth frame of Game 3] was a really good shot. Sometimes, [Morris coach] Harry [Banks] tells me that when the ball goes through, it hits so hard that it carries right through and doesn't hit the eight pin. ... That ball was really good, and I got robbed by that eight pin standing there looking at me."
Easson left the fourth and fifth frames open in the first game and had only two strikes by the seventh, but she struck out from there for a 214. She had three strikes in the second game, which she finished with a 176, but seven straight strikes in Game 3 helped her total a 248.
"Warming up helps just throughout the day. Usually my last game is my best," Easson said. "My last [home] game's my high game, so that's cool."
Another senior, Savannah Strange, matched Warwick for the highest game of the match with a 266 in the third, which completed a 635 series. Strange turned around what looked like an average day early by connecting on three different four-pin spares in the second game.
"Right when I got two strikes [in Game 2], I was more focused and more like, 'I want to get this going because this is my last day here, so just kinda picked it up," Strange said. "I was more relaxed [in Game 3], because in the first two games, I was kinda shaky."
Senior anchor Amber Benson was more consistent than spectacular for the Redskins, bowling a 202, a 204 and a 186 for a 592 series. Their fourth senior, Imelda Garcia, had game totals of 162, 176 and 172 for a 510 series, and junior Jessica Winter added a 469 series.
"Senior day's a tough thing. They kind of emotionally are, sometimes got other things going, so they're emotionally going a lot of different directions," Banks said. "They bowled very well. The whole team bowled very well. We're peaking right at the right time."
DeKalb was led by a 604 from Taylor Mershon and a 592 from Maddy Jouris.