Kettering bowler wins first professional title

Preparation and practice paid off with a PWBA title for Andrea Behr.

The Kettering bowler claimed her first professional title with a win Saturday at the PWBA Greater Detroit Regional at Thunderbowl Lanes in Michigan. But the preparation began long before she arrived in Detroit as Behr had increased her workout regimen as well as her practice schedule to gear up for the regional event.

“Putting the work in made me feel more confident,” Behr said.

Behr put that confidence to the test in an eight-game qualifying round that saw her throw a pair of Brooklyns as well as a Greek Church — a 4-6-7-9-10 split. With only the top four bowlers moving on to the stepladder finals, doubts started to creep in.

“Up until then I thought I was about fourth, after that I thought I was done,” Behr said.

But other bowlers also struggled with the challenging conditions and Behr claimed the third seed. Excited to be moving on, she remained focused, “stay slow, hit my mark, let the ball do the work.”

One-by-one Behr worked her way through the field, topping fourth-seeded Alexis Runk (211-203) and second-seeded Victoria Giardina (224-219) setting up the title match against top-seeded Jodi Woessner.

“I got carry and I got some breaks, and I knew I needed to stay calm and execute,” Behr said.

She did just that, topping the hall of fame bowler, 197-185, to claim her first PWBA title.

“That was the most composed I have ever been in any tournament,” Behr said. “In my younger years I wasn’t always patient, and I didn’t execute when I had a chance, but I try to learn from every event I bowl.”

The 40-year-old has competed in a dozen other PWBA events in recent years with a previous best finish of 21st.

“I am still processing it today, wondering, ‘Is it real, do I need to wake up from this dream?’” she said.

For Behr, dreams do come true.

“I never really bowled when I was younger, so it wasn’t a childhood dream, but it became a dream of mine as an adult,” she said.

Behr left Detroit with more than a long-awaited PWBA title and hardware as she also earned a berth in the 2023 PWBA Regional Showdown. The PWBA Regional event, held in December, will feature a 16-player field — the champions from each regional event in 2023.

Next up for the PWBA champion is the Ohio State USBC Women’s Championship in mid-April.

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