Kettering’s Brian Kretzer (center) won his first PBA50 Tour title last week at Spectrum Lanes in Michigan. Kretzer is pictured with Mike Eaton (left) and Mike Eaton, Jr. of Spectrum Lanes. CONTRIBUTED

Kettering bowler captures first PBA50 Tour title

A tough 2-4-10 split wasn’t enough to deter Brian Kretzer.

“He (Amleto Monacelli) was already ahead – on pace to shoot 220 – and I knew if I didn’t make it, I’d be at 190, and you’re not going to come back from 30 pins down against a PBA Hall of Famer,” Kretzer said.

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Even the added pressure of a televised final didn’t seem to faze Kretzer as he picked up the spare – the only 2-10 conversion he made all week – and went on to roll seven consecutive strikes to edge out Amleto Monacelli, 259-225, to win his first PBA50 Tour title – a major at that – at the PBA50 Cup at Spectrum Lanes, in Wyoming, Mich. on Sunday. Kretzer also has one PBA Tour title to his credit.

“It was my fourth TV appearance in the past six events,” Kretzer said. “When you’re there almost every week, the moment is not quite as big so I think that helped, but that doesn’t mean you’re not nervous.”

Kretzer, 52, was in second place after qualifying and posted a solid 10-6 match-play record earlier in the day giving him the No. 1 qualifying position for the stepladder finals.

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“I had a good feeling the whole tournament,” the Kettering bowler said. “There was really never a time where I felt like I was in trouble. It just seemed like all of the ingredients were there to get it done this time.”

Kretzer – who has eight PBA50 Regional titles to his credit – was close to earning his first national title a few times this season – finishing second at the Suncoast PBA Senior U.S. Open and third at two other events.

“For sure, you want to win every time you bowl, but to get this win, after being so close, and for it to be a major was really great,” he said. “Not every bowler gets that chance.”

The title also boosted Kretzer’s point total as he finished the season as runner-up for the PBA50 Player of the Year to Michael Haugen Jr. who won the PBA50 Fairborn Central Classic at Bowl 10 earlier this summer.

Kretzer will take a week off to move his daughter in at the University of Dayton before hitting the tournament trail. Not one to rest on his laurels, he will compete every weekend except for one from September through Thanksgiving.