pro bowler

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- In only his third season as a professional bowler, a Louisville man just won his first major title.

It was a life-long dream come true after overcoming a career-threatening injury.

Watching his 6-year-old son Gavin hurl his ball down the lane at Executive Strike and Spare, it takes Matt Ogle back to how he got his start at a local bowling alley.

"I started bowling myself around 3 or 4 years old, since I could walk. So about 30 years I've been bowling," said Ogle.

He was about Gavin's age when he bowled his first 200. Even at that age, he knew bowling was his passion. "Everybody's chasing a dream usually," he said.

But only recently did he decide to go after that dream. "All the kids out on tour are 20, 25 years old and I'm 34, so it's either now or never and I decided to do it," said Ogle.

Balancing work, family and life at the bowling alley, Ogle bowls two or three times a week.

"I could bowl 10 or 20 games a day," he said.

He's putting in the work to make his dream come true. "I want to succeed for them. For my son, so he has someone to look up to," he said.

An injury threatened to end his professional career before it even started.

"I had three options: quit bowling, take pills to deal with my pain or have surgery. And I decided to just bowl two handed," said Ogle.

He made the switch and it's finally paying off. "A lot of people say it's a blessing in disguise," he said. "I'm bowling better now than I did when I was one handed."

In just his third season as a Professional Bowlers Association member, he just won his first major title. "That's just a dream of mine to bowl on TV," he said.

His opportunity came at last month in Oklahoma. He and his doubles partner barely advanced into the stepladder finals. "We went from fifth all the way to first," he said.

With the cameras pointed at him, Ogle says he doesn't quite remember what came next. "To walk out and throw my first shot. I told my ball rep I was numb. I didn't know what happened. I didn't remember it. It just kind of happened," he said.

He bowled a strike and the pins kept falling. "We beat two of the best bowlers in the world first match and from there on, we got some good breaks and took some good shots."

It was a big win with a national audience, but it was his own personal cheering section that made it that much better. "It's absolutely amazing, especially with my family there," said Ogle.

He's now headed back on the road for three weeks with hopes of even more success.

"I just tried to sink every thing in and just enjoy it," Ogle said.

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