October 2009 Volume IX, Issue 8 USA $3.95 Can. $5.95
Cohen Takes World 14.1 Title to France Dominguez Earns First Major Title
Borana Andoni's American Dream
ConďŹ dence Strokes
Archer & Immonen Score in Florida
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October 2009 Contents Instructions 12
Grady’s Grad School
Pro Pool Workout
On Second Thought
On The Cover:
Beat People With a Stick
The 8-ball Debates
Don’t Break My Rack (Or Do)
Borana Andoni has come a long way to make her mark on the Women's Professional Billiard Tour. Find out more about the sultry star and her journey from Albania to New York to try to make it big. For the full story, please visit page 22. Photographer: David Lara / Lara Photography
Borana Andoni: Making Strides
Archer and Immonen Fly High in Florida
Van Boening Shines at Diamond Billiards
Dominguez Earns First Major Title
Cohen Makes Pool History in Parsippany
The True Story of a Girl and Her American Dream
Page 26 2 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
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©2009 Predator Cues and Uni-Loc, divisions of Predator Group.
Columns 36 40 42
Cue Maker’s Corner Quickly to Rise – Eric Crisp, Sugartree Cues
Industry Ink Lucasi Cues Focuses on the Players’ Competitive Edge Technology and Performance the Masses Can Afford
Stripes Help Wanted
44 Industry News
Departments 6 Pool on TV 10 Advertiser Directory 48 League Player of the Month
Regional Roundup 50 54 59 61
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Grady’s Grad School The 1 ball On Second Thought GRADY’S GRAD SCHOOL
by Grady Mathews
by Grady Matthews
This month’s column features three end-game situations where the correct shot isn’t obvious, in my opinion. Many times it is necessary to take what the table will give you. In Diagram 1, top one-pocket players often like to cut this ball into their pocket. Bank However, this object ball lies at or aboutKick the outer limits of where it can be sliced in. I’ve made this shot several times, under pressure and against talented opposition. Now that I am older and interesting, end-game kick shots composeelse. this don’tThree easily make slightly long, different hard shots, I prefer something month’s column. It was said of “Frisco Jack” that he “moved like a ghost.”
willare helpseveral you in this Hopefully So I these play situations safe. There waysdepartment. to do this, but one selection appeals to me more than the others. With a slightly elevatI’vemedium featured the shotand shown Diagram 1 before but from a different ed cue, speed, no inenglish, I like cutting the object ball angle.toNow shotitselection over the the sidetwo-rail rail andbank having end up is at even aboutworse. Point IfXI’m on in thedead end stroke I can only make the bank shot about a quarter of the time. I cannot rail. The cue ball travels two rails and winds up on the other end rail. control both balls, and sometimes I’ll even scratch when I make the bank.
in Diagram 2 is bankable, but I don’t like to be this far from the object ball. I’d rather have the cue ball around the area of the spot if I want to attempt the thin-hit bank shot. This bank shot is an oldtime classic one-pocket shot, a favorite of players like Freddy “The Beard” Bentivegna and “Bugs” Rucker. Diagram 1 From farther away, I think the right shot is to two-rail the 1 ball up to about Point R. At the same time, using high english, I want the cue ball to end up on the end rail. To control both balls nicely, cut the object ball slightly to the left of straight ahead. In Diagram 3, there is no bank, and using high english doesn’t work. What I prefer is to use a little draw, striking the 1 ball full in the face and simply stopping the cue ball. The reason for some draw on the cue ball is that from this distance a just-below-center-ball hit will act like follow english and a scratch is possible,
Much, much better is to kick behind the 1 ball using high, left-hand english and medium speed. Struck correctly, the high english “kills” the cue ball and leaves it about where the 1 ball originally sits. The 4-inch distance off the rail that the object ball is, is very important—3 inches is not enough, and 5 inches is a bit too much. Practice this shot a few times, and you’ll get idea of what I’m talking about. Diagram 2 shows a better kick shot than a one-rail bank. With high, right-hand english and medium speed, the cue ball dies near the end rail. If I were to go all-out for the bank shot I couldn’t comfortably draw the cue ball because it’s right on the rail. I’ll leave a free crossing bank to my opponent more often than I’ll win the game with the shot. The optimum distances off the rail for this shot are 5 to 7 inches.
The shot Diagram 2 I like in Diagram 3 is the two-rail kick. The cue ball is almost frozen on the rail. My only other reasonable option is to shoot a slow-speed safety, which is mighty tentative for my taste.
I don’t have a system to ﬁgure where on the ﬁrst rail I want the cue ball to hit. I just try to not contact one of the points of the pocket. The object ball is 4 inches off the end rail. A straight high ball and a level cue work best here. This identical shot is the correct way to take this ball out of the pocket, if Pocket R were your opponent’s hole. I cannot overstress the value of these types of kick shots in the end game of one-pocket. They also come into play with 9-ball and snooker defense. R
10 InsidePOOL Magazine September 2009 12 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
The expert and/or adventurous player may have noticed that in Diagram 3, a five-rail bank is possible. I like this shot if there’s a ball or two on the end rail to play position on and to block an easy bank shot for my opponent if I don’t quite make the five-railer. When it’s the only ball on the table, I’d pass if I were you. These shots come up regularly. It is well worth knowing the correct way to play them. Grady “The Professor” Mathews is one of pool’s most recognized fi gures. His success at the table has opened doors for him as techGrady Professor” Mathews is one commentator of pool’s most on recognized ﬁgures. nical“The advisor to movie producers, Accu-Stats video His success at the table has opened doors for him as technical advisor productions, producer of billiard instructional video tapes, and as an to movie producers, commentator on Accu-Stats video productions, proauthor. Grady has won several world one-pocket titles and recentducer of billiard instructional video tapes, and as an author. Grady has ly became the proprietor of “Grady’s” poolroom in Lexington, SC. won several world one-pocket titles and recently became the proprietor of “Grady’s” poolroom in Lexington, SC.
Pro Pool Workout Racking Technique
and the two balls behind the 9 ball, which tend to stay downtable. When racking, you want to place the balls so your opponent has to continually move from one end of the table to the other to run out. One way to accomplish this is to place the 8 at the bottom of the rack and the 7 and the 2 directly behind the 9 ball. Place the 3 and the 5 in front of the 9 and the 4 and 6 in the wing spots. This arrangement tends to leave the 1, 3, and 8 uptable and the 2, 7, and 9 downtable.
PRO POOL WORKOUT
by Bob Henning
byInBob theHenning last few years there has been a lot of attention on racking, especially in 9-ball, and most good players today have specific ideas about how to rack the balls to affect the outcome of the break. They believe they can give a legal rack and still make it easier or harder to run out.
There are times when you may want to rack the A good training aid for practicing rolling ball caro balls so they are easier to run. If you’re racking for yourStroke Trainer, endorsed by Nick Varner and available from self and making a ball on the break, this is the correct ing.com. The heart of this aid is a vinyl circle with a sma thing to do. If you’re racking for your opponent and the object ball and a circle to represent the cue ball at con he’s not making a ball on the break or not capable of runblack line showing the sliding ball 90-degree reference an There are two scenarios where you might want ning a rack, then it is also in your favor to rack them easy. lines for cue ball paths for 60, 30, 20, and 10 degrees. It to make the rack more difficult. Obviously, if you’re of the cue ball to the object ball and the path of the cue ba racking for your opponent and he’s making balls on The way to make a rack easier to run is to minimize the Although designed primarily to show aim and cue ball pat the break, it is in your favor to make the rack tough to times you will have to move up and down table. The ideal this aid can be used very effectively for caroms. run. Secondly, if you’re racking for yourself and not rack is where the 2, 3, and 4 go uptable with the 1 ball and making onisthe break or them too player’s congest-tool the Theballs carom a standard toolleaving in the advanced box5, 6, 7, and 8 stay downtable with the 9 ball. Then to run ed might a good idea to get rack tough. situaandtoisrun, oftenthen usedit to makebeearly 9 balls and outthem of congested tions in 8-ball, one-pocket, and straight pool. The carom most players If you break The the balls hit a hundred and object keep track of ball is are familiar There are ways to make rackball more difficult by with, however, is thethe sliding carom. ontimes the where they go, you will discover that there is a distinct pattern. leaving gaps between the balls, but that is generally consingle variable that determ sidered to the general rules of that the Thisdishonorable. carom is basedAccording on the predictable 90-degree path the path, but even a very s good sportsmanship, it is to spin, give takes your after opponent cue ball, without forward or illegal backward contacting an a playerthere has learned how who to shoot a stopbut shot from aobject slug ball. rack. Once Of course, are players do this, inlength hit of can change out you would difference only need to cross the the table one different distances, the sliding shotenough carom—is de- You can get close to this situation by racking the 2 at hopefully your respect for theball—or game stop is high thatverytime. cue ball path by several deg pendable. It iswant especially when the cueyou ballcan is close thebottom of the rack, the 7 and the 8 behind the 9 ball, the 3 you will not to be effective one of them. Still, le- tothe objectaffect ball and object ball is close to by the ball carom target. It is aand lot 4 behind the head ball, and the 5 and 6 in the wing spots. gally thethe outcome of the break placement. harder to use when the object ball is a long distance from the cue ball when the a long way fromand the carom and Ifharder youyetbreak the object balls ball a ishundred times If your opponent is breaking the 1 ball in the side, make of pointing the line of centers arrow towards a target.track In these situations, ballwill carom is often that the shotsure of you put Instead keep of where theya rolling go, you discover the 2 ball in a tough position. An ideal place is would for teaching a student to aim, point the departure lin choice.is a distinct pattern. there The balls don’t always behind the 9ball ball.paths If you’re racking for yourself and making cue toward a 9 ball sitting in the jaws of a corn break that way, but there are general tendencies and if the 1 in an theobject side, put the 2 in an easy youthe can play ball in the small holespot andwhere position cue ball to carom easier to control thanadvantage. a sliding ball caryou The knowrolling them,ball you canisuse them to your positionrespective on it off of cue the break. The bottom slot is a good choice. ball line to the circle representing the cue om because it is not dependent on the cue ball contacting the object The cue ball will hit the object ball and head straight for th ball during the short interval when any applied backspin has worn off Generally speaking, when breaking from the side rail, Good luck and good shootin’! and1noball forward spin has towards been picked up. side A rolling ball,When on the other the usually heads the far pocket. Setting these shots up over and over will train your ey staysgorolling stops. Regardless of thetoward distancetheit travels, ithand, doesn’t in, it until tendsit to move uptable, back Bob Henning is the author of The Pro Book, widely considered to be able to visualize the path of a rolling cue ball during com the cue ball always ball with the same The breaker. The last contacts ball in the object rack tends to go there,rotation. too. be the most advanced training resource for competitive pool players. tice of techniques the different cuetop ballcoaches paths, especially only thing that varies is the hit on the object ball and the departure path The 9 tends to stay in vicinity of the rack, and the two It brings the all latest of the and trainersthe of 30-deg all essentially a half-ball hit and is the most predictable one to of thebehind cue ball.it are usually involved in collisions and also sports into pool. It is intended for those who wish to prepare physiballs these carom shots off both the right and left sides of the ob cally, mentally, and psychologically for pool competition. Bob is also tend to stay downtable. The wing balls can go anywhere. the author of “The Pro Book Video Series,” a complete, on-the-table The reason the rolling ball carom is not used as often as the slidtraining system,Good and he alsoand released Advanced Pro Book and The luck goodThe shootin’! ing ball carompredictable is that most players are1not the different The most balls are the ballfamiliar and thewith end ball, Stroke Zone: The Pool Player’s Guide to Dead Stroke. In addition, he paths the cueuptable; ball willthe take Thenear hit on object has ballauthored Cornbread Red, a biography of the colorful Billy Burge. which move 9 after ball, contact. which stays thethe rack; is the single variable that determines the path, but even a very small difference in hit can change the cue ball path by several degrees. This
Rolling Ball Caroms
14 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
“ ” “
Tricknology Follow Me
by Jason Lynch
Jason Lynch byOne of the hardest things to do is to develop a good follow stroke, mainly because we tend to drop our back hand when we stroke through the cue ball. These three shots are three I use to warm up and will help you develop a consistent follow stroke.
The third shot is my favorite follow shot and a shot that can be used in a regular game of pool if it comes up. Balls 1and 2 are frozen to the side rail at the diamonds. Ball C is approximately 1/8-inch off the rail. Place the cue ball in line between Ball 1 and the first diamond of the foot rail. This will give you the angle needed to forcefollow down the rail as well as the correct angle to clear the balls out. Hit the cue ball with extreme top, and Balls 1 and 2 should be knocked away, allowing the cue ball to zip down the rail to pocket Ball C. If the balls do not clear out, adjust the cue ball left or right until the balls clear away with enough room for the cue to get to Ball C.
Diagram 2 The first shot I like to call “Walk the Dog.” Object Ball E Stroke It, Don’t Poke It B is adjustable in the jaws of the pocket. A good rule of thumb C A C here is to place the back of the ball even with the leading edge of the rail and to the extreme left side of the pocket. Ball The second of the draw shots is a draw and a kick combined. We’ll put was recently at the Michigan State V.N.E.A. Championship, and one F is centered between the points of Pocket F. The cue ball is questions that I was asked by a good player was: “How do you hit some running english on the cue so it will kick long enough to pocket the approximately andFirst oneIdiamond outthe fromball that is resting in the jaws of Pocket A. Cue ball placement, believe it er draw shot?” Randy,one thisdiamond month is back for you. will explain the sidetopocket. Hit up thewith cuelow with top left, cueexplain ball willor not, is dead straight. The english does all the work for the kick. You will que involved juice a ball english, andand thenthe I will pocketinBall E, different hit the side rail,All andthree “walk” down pocket Ball F.want to put bottom right on this shot as is diagrammed. This becomes top s involved three shots. require a to strong stroke right english off the rail, which in this case is running english.
As in any pool shot, the stance, bodyB position, and follow-through A C the biggest impact on the outcome of the shot. A ball hit with two of ee will not power-draw. For myself, I start with a comfortable stance my bridge hand about 4 inches away from the cue ball. This allows me ow through and hit my mark more easily, since the cue is resting on a that is closer than most of my shots.
Diagram 3 A
You can never hit low enough on a power-draw shot. I usually drag my n the cloth when I am stroking well. Your back hand should be loose ight before the point of contact. You will want the cue to slap your F E zip on the cue ball. as you snap your wrist to get maximum D E
he ﬁrst example is a cross-corner draw shot. The angle is what deterthe path thenext cue ball the cue ball hits theone headthat rail, ev of The shotafter is acontact. great If crowd-pleaser and Now it is time to get serious. The last of the shots for this month will the cue ball into more of a straight draw (away from Point X). I lineThe D F E ery trick shot artist should have in his or her arsenal. test any player (myself included). This shot takes a snap of the wrist and a s shot to hit Ball F into the right center of the pocket and hit the cue set-up you see is for a 9-foot table. If you are shooting on areally good follow-through. I shoot this with bottom right draw. I have seen ead bottom and a smooth snap of my wrist. Any side english will be players JasonhitLynch grew playing Michigan. hisballs early table, move this with lowupleft, so do pool what in works for you.In The are ental7-foot to the overall draw. the blocking ball to the center of the endsometwenties he started playing in the VNEA and placed as high as rail. Ball C is on the left side of Pocket C, and Ball F is cen-set as diagrammed; Ball 1 does not have to be made and Balls D and16th E are in 8-ball and 9-ball. In 2005, he won the Michigan VNEA speed pool Hint: Place Ball E approximately one ball’s width away from tered between the points of Pocket F. Cue ball is in hand be-adjustable. contest. He has also pocketed 11,100 and 12,011 balls in 24 hours of the slate of the side pocket. hind the head string. Hit the cue ball with a medium-hardthe cut as fundraisers for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. In stroke and 2 1/2 tips of top right English, and the cue ball 2007 he had his best finish to date, placing sixth at the Artistic Pool U.S. Open and winning the stroke category. Jason is ranked 14th will pocket Ball C, carom to the foot cushion, rebound and Good remember: Stroke it, don’t in the luck, worldand by the WPA. His sponsors arepoke Sheltiit!Pool Tables, Seygo around the blocking ball and pocket Ball F. bert’s Billiard Supply, Pechauer Cues, Dieckman Cues, OB-1 Shafts, Leisure at www.michigankid.com. Jasonand Lynch grewElements. up playingVisit poolhisinwebsite Michigan. In his early twenties he started playing in the VNEA and placed as high as 16th in 8-ball and 9-ball. In 2005, he won the Michigan VNEA speed pool contest. He has also pock16 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009 eted 11,100 and 12,011 balls in 24 hours as fundraisers for the American
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Beat People with a Stick Confidence Strokes BEAT PEOPLE WITH AQuestionable STICK Tip #1: “Count your strokes. Always take
by Tom Simpson
by Tom Simpson
Fidgety. That’s how we look to nonplayers. We’re down on our shot, and we’re fidgeting. We’re stroking, aiming, adjusting our head and our stance and our bridge and on and on. But the fidgeting most visible to spectators is what’s usually called “practice strokes.”
Non-Trivial Pursuits What are we trying to accomplish with these strokes? We’re down there stroking away, “warming up,” getting ready to shoot. Why bother with this part of the routine? I see five big reasons:
1. Feeling the stick. Joining with your instrument, so the cue becomes an extension of your arm and your intention. Getting a “living connection” to the cue.
Sometimes the smallest of things can make the biggest of differences. This is especially true in pool, perhaps our most precise game. 2. Feeling the speed you plan to hit. Players who do The players who are beating you are somehow performing more pre this are more likely to take their speed strokes in the cisely, more efﬁciently, more consistently. What little things are they air, prior to dropping into their shooting stance. doing—or not doing—that might help you?
3. Checking for rust. Ensuring your stroke arm is Are any of these common habits or tendencies smacking you? moving smoothly.
Head bobbing—Some players tilt their head up and down dur aiming4. Checking alignment. your stroke ing and sometimes during the Confirming hit stroke. Try to get yourarm head and stick are properly aligned to the shot. positioned where you can see the shot and believe it, but only move your eyes—and don’t move them during the hit stroke.
5.Building confidence. As the pieces of your personal Focusing pre-shot routine click into place, your confidence on the cue ball—Many players stare at the cue ball they grows. while drop into their stance and then try to acquire the target line after they are already down. Too late. Align yourself to the distant Hopefully youron practice work nicely, youwill artarget and stay sharp that asstrokes you drop. Trust that helping your body line upatwell to what you see andand intend. rive a peak of confidence take your best shot. With confi-
dence, we stroke smoothly and without hesitation. We’re in the Poormoment. chalking—Whenever going to do has something expresent Everyone canyou’re see when a player confidence treme, carefully the edgesWithout of your tip. This is where miscue, or hits a shotchalk confidently. confidence, we we tend to inand this is when miscue. Chalk your good chalk job terfere with ourwe own athleticism. Our edges! stroke A develops hitches. contributes to your conﬁ dence and your calmness. We assume we are A powerful downward spiral can begin—as you lose congood chalkers. Try chalking thoroughly with one color of chalk, and fidence, you play worse, as you play worse, you lose then chalk yourTo normal with another a look. You’ll confidence. me, way practice strokescolor. are Take really about fobecusing surprised. and building confidence. This portion of your preshot process tells you when you’re truly ready to hit. Shooting before ready—Have as complete a plan as you can before you bend over. If doubt or a new idea arrives, stand up and Let’s look at a couple of popular stroke tips. These “oldstart over. Move and shoot at your own speed. Don’t rush. Don’t school” ideas made sense when you first heard them. Howevshoot until your body has settled into the shot and your conﬁdence is er, I believe they may do more harm than good for most playas good as it can be.
ers. Some of my fellow instructors may disagree with me here.
18 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
the same number, for example, always take three strokes and then hit. Find your number and be consistent.” Part of the reasoning enormous little things: here is Try thatthese it’s like a countdown. You will be ready when you get to launch time. Excuse me. I don’t think we can count on having Conﬁgo,” rming position—You, of course,allhave a very speciﬁc, “all systems ontip demand, right on schedule, the time. We’re precisedoing intention for exactly where will theget cue ball. Be sure humans, an impossibly preciseyou task. Westrike might distracted rmfeel thatayour stroke deliver thenotice tip as an planned. bytoa conﬁ sound, rough spotwill on our shaft, itch, orThis havesounds a obvious, but you really haveplan. to beThere conscious tip placement second thought about the shot are a about thousand ways we on everynot shot. yourwhen strokewe system comenumber to a fullof stop with your might be If ready get toallows, the magic strokes. tip at the CB, and visually conﬁrm your tip placement before taking the hit stroke.
If you are conditioned to shoot after a certain number of strokes, you might not be able to stop yourFinding your best bridge angle—The purpose of the bridge is to self if you’re not really ready. I watched a famous pro playprovide an absolute rock that guides your tip to the precise spot where er miss a $25,000 hanger under TV pressure. She always you intend to touch the cue ball. Any bridge that achieves this is okay, takes two strokes and then hits. Sometimes she’s not ready. but let’s go past that and work to ﬁnd a bridge that helps. If you use an open bridge, notice the skin line formed by your thumb resting against
the sideQuestionable Tip Try #2: adjusting “Take your practice at the of the foreﬁnger. your bridge strokes so that line points speed you plan to hit.” Sounds sensible. Get your arm ready down your intended stick line and becomes part of the “vee” oftoyour gobridge. that speed. Well,have okay,tobut have you noticed your in practice You might pivot your bridge handthat slightly your wrist strokes are only half strokes, while your hit stroke is a full to ﬁnd this alignment. You may ﬁnd this gives you a betterstroke? groove for The practice stroke is you slowing stopping, and and consistently. reversing If your stroke and helps line updown, more accurately direction before it gets to the CB, while the hit stroke you use a closed (ﬁnger loop) bridge, try pivoting your accelerbridge hand ates through the ball. They’re really theinsame swing. slightly outward, holding the not shaft ﬁrmly touchtype withofthe webbing between your thumb and foreﬁnger. The feeling will be that you are
stroking Tryingthrough to follow thisagainst adviceslight leadsresistance. some players into trying a tube, Try these bridge anto gles match of the to the speed forward andthe seespeed whether theybackswing improve your conﬁ denceoforthe accuracy. swing. Seems reasonable, but consider this: A quicker backswing for ﬁnal aim—We all havethat habits of how we see our makes Dowsing it that much harder to overcome backward swing ﬁnaland aim,transition how we “know” we are forward on it. Yet, Often we speed the cue nicely forwe themiss. hit stroke. Themiss the same thestick same way.the Or,more at a likely higheryou level, might not be quicker youangle, pull the back, arewe to pull your hitting the part of the pocket we expected. Try this: Once you’ve come stick off that aim line you’re so carefully trying to shoot down. to your ﬁnal aim, stop moving and see it clearly. Now, make the smallmake. You the pick“practice which direction, or try estItaiming mightadjustment be helpfulyoutocan think about strokes” both. Make that tiny aiming adjustment, settle, and see it. Does it portion of the shooting setup as “confidence strokes.” We’relook perfect”We’re than your earlierand ﬁnalfeeling aim? Shoot straight and see what not“more practicing. stroking to hook everything happens. This is a results-based way to train yourself to correctly up, check it, and build our confidence. Confidence strokes feel see the shots tend to many see imperfectly. Your brain you has to light(within up and say good. Takeyou however confidence strokes need yes when the shot is on. You may have to show it the correct picture reason), every shot. If you’re not feeling confident enough, get a few times.
up, chalk up, and start over. Shoot when you’re good and ready.
Some of these little things are really big things. Try a little. Tom Simpson is a Master Instructor in both the BCA and ACS Instructor Programs. He delivers his acclaimed 3-Day Weekend Intensive in Columbus, Ohio, and in selected cities nationwide. As inventor of Elephant Practice Balls®, the Stroke Groover™, and the Ghostball Aim Trainer®, and authorized instructor for Secret Aiming Systems™, Tom’s have helpedinthousands of players. Listen Tominnovations Simpson isina training Master Instructor both the BCA & ACS Instructo an audio description of the Intensive, and read 35 instructional articles at tor Programs. He delivers his acclaimed 3-Day Weekend Intensive www.NationalBilliardAcademy.com. Contact: Tom@Pool- Clinics.com. in Columbus, Ohio, and in selected cities nationwide. As inventor of Elephant Practice Balls®, the Stroke Groover™, and the Ghostball Aim Trainer®, and authorized instructor for Secret Aiming Systems™,
The 8-Ball Debates Don’t Break My Rack (Or Do)
Q. Is the break an advantage in 8-ball? The 8-Ball Debates by Matt Sherman Donny Lutzcall you “Quick Draw!” If you Donny:and I see why they
“scatter the rack yet sink nothing” you’ll be reaching for the rack against any good player.
Q. Why are there so many different sets of 8-
Think of it all this way. When you break you may: • make a ball and run the table for a win cally win national havingAPA played • make thea8-ball and title win under rulespool only a hand offers the possibility of winning the paid trip to Las Or, also you may: • not makeplayers a ball and give thethe table perienced tend toup like BCA, VNEA, APS, et by Matt Sherman and Donny Lutz • make a ball and scratch, giving up the table rewarded a bit more for your skill and not so much for yo • make the 8 ball and scratch, losing under APA rules Donny: First we must consider the condition of the table. • make a ball said and not have there’s a good second shot, morethan, Having all that, not much worse af If the rack spot is depressed from abuse, you have a probDonny: Changing rules is a natural part of the evolution of pool. likely under APA rules lem. Even a tight rack could jump the cue ball on contact with losing on a slop shot. Whenthe I began play,forcing way back the lasttocentury, weresnap. no “ofﬁcial” head toball, the in breaker forego there a power For these reasons alone, the break is not a clear advanules. The general rules were shoot your group of balls in ﬁrst, no defensive Matt: But punishing crime when the 8 ﬁnds an un tage. I’ve had substantial success giving up the break in 8 ball. hots (“dirty pool!”), and call every shot. The ﬁ rst 8-ball league rules I beMatt: My response is to use a more level cue, my spectators like a littl The onlyexample, time it’s amakes really 8-ball bad betfun is iffor your opponentwho clearly ame back aware hand of were thoselong usedand by the National Pocket Billiard quite low in movement. Great Association, reHigher-ranked players take psychological edge in match has a better break than you. come from They using were a long, levelto cue stroke breaking hichsults began in 1964. similar current World Standardized
the odds, makes hustlers “lucky,” and adds dash to the 8-ball even with a bad simply ules,anwith onerack, glaring exception: You spot. couldMost push players out on any shot! Your shoot softly to block pockets on a miss as they ought to, th You have another option, of course, and that is to play movehad thethe rack slightly ahead of spot where rules perpponent option of taking thethe shot or or, giving it back. Made for a slop, so may all my opponents slap ‘em as hard as they li a legal but soft break, thereby reducing your opponent’s mit, they aim at game, the second to sink thelast 8 ball for the win. ascinating defensive but arow match could forever! chances of running out. This is a bad choice too, if
your adversary better player adaptation, than you.and BCA is rulesa are superbsafety for universal Donny: I’m afraid a level cue won’t help much with the Matt: My Picture Yourself Shooting Pool alerts gamblers to assess represent thousands of players who want consistent rule head ball in a deep divot. And the cue should be as level as ocal rules and to love a poolroom that posts their rules in plain sight. I’veMatt: A thoughtful analysis if lacking 8 I’m tired of hiring Crane, Poole &ball psychology. I’d Schmidt to mediate ru possible on any break, any condition, any game. The opponent ambled beneath a busted tin roof in the rain, where local rules matched the rather break than watch, especially when they break well or lucky. may not wish to rack “high” or “low” at your request either. ules of golf. I could lift my ball from incidental water without penalty. Adapting universal rules could also help the World You wrote it’s a “... bad bet ... if your opponent The break is no advantage if the balls won’t rack tightly. I Billiards Sports add 8-ball to future Olympic Games. Gen clearly has a better break ...” Can you guarantee their Yet swim those poolgoing tables install universal alsoI’d don’t recommend foragain the 8toball withathe second set ballof 8-ball only should change, and for new equipment only, such as next break won’t clearly be better than my next break? ules, hit covering all players everywhere. unless the balls other than the head ball are tight and you’re limits or limiting cue ball position on the break where ne on a fast table. Exciting? Yes. Dangerous, too. You increase your At double-hill or in any pressure situation you’ll want the chance of sinking theNational 8 but scratching for a loss. The World Stan- ConDonny: The Valley 8-Ball Association and the Billiard Donny: The biggest complaint I hear from player break, dardized Rules this a moot point, of since course—only APA some I’m certain. ress of America havemake had nearly identical rules their inception players, is that they don’t like slop. BCA, VNEA, and A andago. old-time allowtheir for the win or loss on the break. some 0 years They bar haverules tweaked rules occasionally to eliminate rently about 176,000) also putLutz, money the game, Donny “The Grumpy Old Coach” BCAinto Certifi ed In- but f the luck factors, such as making the 8 ball on the break being always structor, has recorded over 200 league and tournament titles includis another issue. I have a hunch that a referendum among I disagree, as a medium strength win or aMatt: loss. Along with the American Cue Sports Alliance,butthey ing now43 league MVPs.the Reach Donny at poolcool.zoomshare.com. would favor World Standardized Rules. accurate snap against a tight rack works, and it se the World Standardized Rules. The American Poolplayers Association, Matthew “Quick Draw” Sherman is the Guide to Pool and Billiards at works against a loose rack if you explore the potenAbout.com, a top-fi ve website with over 53 million unique anting to be uniquely designed for beginner and novice players, created Matt: As I said, BCA or APA, pick something and tial caroms and combinations we 14.1 players exploit. visitors monthly. His Picture Yourself Shooting Pool book
heir own set of rules which re-introduced “luck factors” into the game such worldwide. But real men eat slop if not quiche. In play features DVD instruction and is available from Amancluding “slop” or necessary on any shot for break. the 8 ball. Loose or no-call tight, it’s an advantage to except keep the like toatsee), slop is of negligible zon and8-ball other(another outlets.change ReachI’dMatt billiards.about.com. I want to control whether I get stripes or solids if open Donny and on longer oppositeraces sides of played Gainesville, FL, Le eningMatt ruleslive allows to be efﬁciently. Itable totally rules agree that poolroom would bethe wiserack to postyet the house allow, and owners if I scatter and arescoring on opposite sides on manymatter, issueswhich but have somesystems are another we will tackle ules in sight. If atit were me, I’d the World how managed to win fi ve doubles titles in recent competition. sinkplain nothing, leastupIto can runpost either set Standardized later. ules, the APA rules, and any other rules used in league or tournament lay. Donny “The Grumpy Old Coach” Lutz, BCA Certiﬁed I 20 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
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Borana Andoni: Making Strides The True Story of a Girl and Her American Dream by Lea Andrews
ou may know her as the bellylicious girl in the Jim Murnak Custom Cases ad. Or perhaps you’ve witnessed her in action, been the victim of one of her pool victories. Or maybe you’re a New Yorker yourself, and you’ve seen her out on the dance floor at one of her favorite clubs. However you know her, or if this is your first glimpse of her, know this: Borana Andoni is on her way to the WPBA, and there is no stopping her. Coming to America Like many WPBA players, Andoni was not born in the United States, but unlike many, she didn’t come here to play pool. Born in 1986 in Albania (a European country bordered by Greece, Kosovo, Montenegro, and Macedonia and just across the Strait of Otranto from Italy), Andoni spent her early years living in the capital city of Tirana, with her parents and sister, who is four years her elder and the one who named her. “Borana means Snow White in Albanian. My sister gave me that name because Snow White was her favorite kid story.” Though Andoni still loves the fresh, organic food of Albania and its beautiful natural landscape, growing up there wasn’t easy. “It’s really different there,” she said. “Life is a little bit more difficult, just because it’s poor, but you appreciate things more.” It was when Andoni was ten that she and her family won the Green Card Lottery, which was their ticket to a better life in the US. “It’s a lottery held all over the world,” she explained, “and not just one person wins, but a couple hundred or thousands out of millions. If you win, you get to go to the United States and get a green card and citizenship free after five years.” It was a huge, potentially scary The first few weeks I was really event for bad because I’d just picked up a stick a child, for the first time, but after a while I but not for realized I could be good at this. her. “I was really excited; I wasn’t scared. I was just like, ‘Wow, I’m going to America.’ I was just ready to leave. I told my friends goodbye, and then I left.” The Andoni family moved to New York, and young Borana, who couldn’t speak English, was put in the fifth grade right away. “It took me about six months to learn English,” she said, “because when you’re young, you learn everything so fast.” Andoni, who began taking private piano lessons in Albania at the age of six, attended performing arts schools through high school, where she got her first taste of the pressure of an audience. “I performed in concerts and stuff like that, and I also played the violin for four years, so I’ve performed with orchestras, and I kind of got used to the crowds.”
Photo by Michael Young Picture 22 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
just the jumpstart Andoni needed. “It all started there,” she said, “and then I started traveling outside of New York to play in qualifiers and other tournaments.” Her road partner for the summer was Cristina De La Garza, whom she’d met in Las Vegas in 2008. “We exchanged e-mail addresses and started e-mailing each other, and we got along really well,” said Andoni. “We went to Tennessee together—that was our first time traveling together and it really went well, so we did it again.” The two went to Bristol, TN, to WPBA player Janet Atwell’s pool room Borderline Billiards twice, in fact. At the first event in June, a Mid-American Ladies Tour (MALT) event, Andoni made quite a splash when she posted a 7-3 win over Atwell to make it into the final eight on Sunday. Andoni and De La Garza returned to Bristol for the inaugural WPBA Satellite Tour event in mid-July, but up first was a trip to Evansville, IN, for the Indiana State 9-Ball Championships, where Andoni made it into the final four on the winners’ side following a 9-5 victory over Midwest powerhouse Julia Gabriel. “When I got back from that whole traveling experience, I went to play in the Tri-State, which I hadn’t played in a year or so, and I won that one.” And another Tri-State win soon followed.
Photo by David Lara Photography
Girl Meets Pool It took some time, though, for that experience to translate into her pool game, since she didn’t pick it up until she was a freshman at Fordham University, where she studied finance and mathematics. As a commuter student, Andoni found herself with nothing to do between classes, no dorm to go to. “I started playing between classes in the commuter center and playing people for drinks. The first few weeks I was really bad because I’d just picked up a stick for the first time, but after a while I realized I could be good at this.” Things started to come together for Andoni once she hooked up with fellow Fordham student Thomas Wan, one of the top New York players. “He showed me my fundamentals, and we started going to pool halls together and practicing.” Andoni joined a league at Amsterdam Billiards and began improving rapidly, doubling her handicap in a year. The natural next step was tournament competition, and she began playing on the J. Pechauer Northeast Women’s Tour (JPNEWT). Soon after that, she began playing in Tony Robles’ Predator 9-Ball Tour and Tri-State Tour events. The Road to Success And now, four years of working on her game has started to pay off, and her biggest successes so far came in the summer of 2009. Winning the BCA Women’s Open Team National 8-Ball Championship along with teammates Gail Glazebrook, Emily Duddy, Michele Li, Olga Gashkova, and Alison Fischer (collectively known as “Kiss of Death”) was
Her summer of travel, which took her as far as Oklahoma, put tournament play into perspective for her. “I didn’t realize it [was helping] when I was traveling, but when I got back and played in a local tournament, some of the people that I’d feared, I didn’t fear anymore. Your whole point of view changes.” With her recent successes in hand, Andoni has been striving even harder to reach her goal of playing in the WPBA. Though she has in the past taken some lessons (a few from George “Ginky” Sansouci as well as from Lou Desado), her current training plan involves a post-work routine of an hour at the gym followed by two hours at the poolroom, where she’ll play the ghost or practice a particular shot she’s recently missed by hitting it 30 or 40 times until she can’t miss it again.
Before I make that last nine ball, I go back and think about how hard I’ve worked to deserve it. And I do deserve it.
9 to 5 Of course, like most aspiring pros (and some pros, in fact), she does still have to work for a living. She’s done some modeling in the past for Hawaiian Tropic, but now, as a business consultant for Smart Advisory Group, Andoni does accounting work and anything finance-related for clients. She travels throughout the Northeast for work, staying as long as a few months at a time in another city. She’s recently been in Hartford, CT, aiding an insurance company, and her home has been at the local Marriot Residence Inn, October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 23
but when she gets back to her New York home, she’ll fall back into her regular routine, for the time being at least. “New York is really expensive, and I’m trying to save money just in case I have to quit my job and play pool,” she explained. If she did quit her job for pool, it would certainly be somewhat of a wake-up call for her conservative parents. Her mother, who works for the state as an interpreter, and her father, a math teacher, don’t really like the fact that she plays pool and have never been to one of her tournaments. “When I show them a trophy, they’re like, ‘Wow, you actually are good at this!’” she relayed with a laugh. “They’re very surprised because they don’t know where this talent came from. Nobody in my family ever played pool or knows anything about pool.” New York State of Mind But even though family and pool don’t mix for her, she does sometimes invite a few of her non-pool friends to watch her play in tournaments. “They’re funny because they really don’t know how to act when they watch me play, so they’ll clap or, you know, do something stupid, and I’m just like, ‘Oh, my God.” Those are the friends that are better suited to Andoni’s other hobby, the one she probably couldn’t pick up a sponsor for: clubbing. “I like to dance. Clubbing is really big in New York,” she said, although she does also enjoy a quiet evening in Manhattan, perhaps having dinner or drinks (she loves pineapple rum and piña coladas) at one of her favorite restaurants, such as Blue Water Grill in Union Square or the Dutch restaurant Brussells. And she’ll still occasionally dust off the sheet music at the upright piano she has at home. “Bach was one of my favorites. I love ‘Toccata in E Minor’ and I practiced his preludes all the time. I also loved Beethoven’s sonatas. ‘Moonlight’ was definitely one of [my favorites]. The last time I played was a couple weeks ago just for fun, but I don’t play much anymore because I’m so involved with pool in my free time.”
And Murnak isn’t the only one jumping on the Andoni bandwagon, as the pool community has sat up and taken note of her sophisticated European look and her irrefutable talent on the table. Cutthroat Sports Clothing Company and Hustlin’ USA have both sent her sportswear, and she’s received cues from Poison Billiards and Richard Hsu, a custom cue maker. For Poison Billiards, she performed exhibition matches at the Super Billiards Expo in Valley Forge, PA, where she was able to gain a bit more experience in the playing with an audience department. “There were about thirty to fifty people surrounding the table watching. The first few games I was so nervous, but after that, I finally let my stroke out.” Getting There That stroke is her ticket to the WPBA. She’s already used it to qualify through JPNEWT for this winter’s WPBA Regional Tour Championships, which qualifies the top 16 finishers for the 2010 WPBA Classic Tour. “That’s currently my goal, the one I’m focusing on for the next couple of months … I think the hardest part is just to get there, for me. After that I’m going to gain a lot more confidence. I think I’ll be able to play my game because of the experience I’ve gotten. I think eighty percent of the battle is just getting there. And after that, I think I’ll be okay.” If she’s right, she can one day experience on the WPBA tour the feeling she describes as one of the best she’s ever experienced: winning a tournament. “It’s not over until I make that last ball so I have to stay calm and not claim my win yet. Before I make that last nine ball, I go back and think about how hard I’ve worked to deserve it. And I do deserve it.”
And it’s paying off. Besides having tournament success, Andoni has also caught the eye of some sponsors, starting with Jim Murnak, who first saw her way back when she’d just started playing at Amsterdam. “The first time I saw her play I saw that she not only had almost perfect form, but she was really intense. I knew that the only people that I had seen with those qualities were the pros.” The Word Spreads A couple years later, Andoni had a two-by-four Jim Murnak custom cue case in hand, and it’s undeniably hers. The front of the case bears a two-headed eagle identical to the one on the Albanian flag, but Andoni chose it not simply to display pride in her heritage, though she certainly has plenty of that and still visits Tirana, where her family keeps an apartment even now. “I like what [the eagle] stands for … it’s supposed to mean ‘killer’ in our country.” 24 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Photo by David Lara Photography
by InsidePOOL Staff
ohnny Archer and Mika Immonen both earned topplace finishes at the Second Annual Mezz Classic, Archer for his prowess in straight pool and Immonen for winning the 10-ball event. The dualdivision event rolled into the pool-player-saturated area of Orlando, FL, at Corner Pocket Billiards the first week of August and was sponsored by Mezz Cues and Ozone Billiards.
Archer also experienced a straight run through, besting Bill Dunsmore 125-26 in the second round and then sending Marco Tschudi to the west side of the chart 125-71. He then went on to defeat 2008 Player of the Year Immonen 125-54, sending him to the one-loss side. On the one-loss side early Friday, Immonen started off the day by besting Mike Davis 125-50, while Shane Van Boening defeated “Rocket” Rodney Morris 125- 62. At that point, Immonen and Van Boening joined the two undefeated players, Archer and Hohmann, in a single-elimination bracket to see who would come out on top. Immonen played a tough match against Hohmann but eked out a 150-115 victory, while Archer won against Van Boening 150-132. Having advanced to the finals against Immonen, Archer took an early lead against “Iceman” and never relinquished it. The table sported triple-shimmed pockets, making it difficult for either player to put a run together. Nevertheless, Archer managed a 55-ball run halfway through the match, from which Immonen never recovered. While Archer allowed Immonen several opportunities to recover, Immonen didn’t seem to capitalize, and Archer was able to close out the final match 200-80. To make up for this disappointment, Immonen recovered quickly enough, winning the 48-player 10-ball invitational division over “Rocket” Rodney Morris in the finals. The 48-player, double-elimination event was held August 7-9 and was also sponsored by Mezz Cues and Ozone Billiards.
Mika Immonen The Mezz Classic Straight Pool Invitational, which began August 6 and concluded the following day, saw 23 players show up for the race-to-125 event. Hohmann went unchallenged in the event until he was one of the remaining four players, at which point the format changed to single elimination. He buzzed through his second-round match against Tommy Najar 125-42, and then his third-round match against Yu Ram Cha he won 125-67, notching the high run of the tournament with 94. He then went on to face “Rocket” Rodney Morris and sent him to the one-loss side 125-73 to reach the final four.
26 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Morris met up with 2008 World Cup partner Shane Van Boening in one match in the winners’ side final four. After event promoter Charlie Williams sent Jennifer Barretta to the west side 8-3, he then was ushered to the left side himself by Morris 8-3. Morris’ previous match saw him best Marco Tschudi 8-6. Van Boening had no easier of a time, having to get through Northeast threat Manny Chau 8-5 and then “Iron Man” Mike Davis in a hill-hill squeaker. Hohmann, perhaps disgruntled at not defending his straight pool title in the first event, bested the man who won the 14.1 division this year: Archer. Before sending Archer west 8-4, Hohmann had to face off against Yu Ram Cha and engaged in a tight hill-hill bout with her, coming from behind to win. Hohmann then faced off against Immonen in the other winners’ side match. Immonen delivered Dan Dennis to the oneloss side 8-3 and then sent Shawn Putnam there as well 8-4.
In the one-loss side, Steve Moore had worked his way through some tough opponents, including James Roberts and Chau, only to be ousted by Archer in a close 8-6 match. Archer’s opponent in the final four was Tschudi, who eliminated Putnam 8-6. After his loss to Putnam on the right side, Corey Deuel is still alive. He trumped Williams in a hill-hill match to face off against Davis, who recovered from his loss to Van Boening in order to oust Florida’s Donnie Mills 8-6. Van Boening made short work of Morris 8-3, but against Immonen he did not fare so well. After the Finn sent Hohmann to the west side of the chart, Immonen and Van Boening, who have earned the 2008 and 2007 Player of the Year honors between them, clashed in the hot seat match, with Immonen eventually triumphing 8-7. His ultimate opponent in the finals, Morris, had suffered a late loss to Van Boening 8-3 and was forced to make a bid for his appearance in the final match. He fought his way through Archer 8-6, but things didn’t get any easier for the Hawaiian, for then he faced off against a very determined Hohmann. This match went hill-hill, but Morris
prevailed to advance to the semifinals against Van Boening. The former U.S. Open champ didn’t seem to put up much of a fight, and Morris was able to sail through to the finals 8-2. In the extended race to 10, it was a hard-fought match for both players from start to finish. Immonen took the lead early on, but Morris came back and, in a tooth-and-nail fight, tied the match up at 7 apiece. But Immonen, who happens to be sponsored by Mezz Cues, persevered, and he managed to win the next three racks in a row to win the match and title 10-7.
Straight Pool Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 5th 7th 9th 13th
Johnny Archer Mika Immonen Thorsten Hohmann Shane Van Boeniing Mike Davis Rodney Morris Neil Fujiwara Charlie Williams Todd Anderson Yu Ram Cha Steve Moore Marco Tschudi Tommy Najar Mike Delawder Wayne Catledge Dan Heidrich
1st Mika Immonen 2nd Rodney Morris 3rd Shane Van Boening 4th Thorsten Hohmann 5th Johnny Archer Mike Davis 7th Corey Deuel Marco Tschudi 9th Steve Moore Shawn Putnam Charlie Williams Donnie Mills 13th Nick Tafoya Zaid Thweid Jerry Calderone Manny Chau October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 27
Van Boening Shines at Diamond Billiards by Raymond Linares
he former world 10-ball champion, Shane Van Boening, asserted his dominance over a world-class ﬁeld at the Seminole Pro Tour’s August 14-16 stop at Diamond Billiards in Cape Coral, FL. Amongst world champions in multiple disciplines, “The South Dakota Kid” showed that his skill set is ultimate in the game of 10-ball with his hill-hill defeat of Mika Immonen in the ﬁnals. With an undefeated trek to the ﬁnals, Van Boening conquered Louie Smith 7-2, James Roberts 7-1, Neil Fujiwara 8-2, Larry Nevel 8-2, and Immonen 8-5 in the hot seat match. Securing a shot at his ﬁrst Seminole Pro Tour championship, Van Boening then awaited the victor of a powerful one-loss-side bracket. On the west side Larry “The Truth” Nevel was clearing a path straight for the title, eliminating Johnny Archer 8-3 and Steve Moore 8-2. But Nevel would fall one game short of a shot at the title, as
he succumbed to “Iceman” in an epic hill-hill battle. The ﬁnals were set, pitting the same ﬁnalists from the previous week’s Mezz Classic—Van Boening and Immonen. The two exchanged heavy body blows early on, but it was Van Boening who started pulling away. Leading 6-4 and looking like he was going to cruise to victory, Van Boening missed a makeable 6 ball. This allowed Immonen to close the gap to 6-5, proving to be a key game. In the twelfth game, both players jockeyed back and forth for control of this crucial game. It looked like Van Boening would be the one to blink ﬁrst after he attempted a kick-safety; however, the 4 ball that hung in the jaws of the hungry pocket was unkind to Immonen. After pocketing the long-distance 4, the Finn scratched in the opposite corner pocket. Behind 7-5, it seemed that frustration was beginning to take its icy grip over Immonen, and he was forced to sit and watch as Van Boening took control of the match. But Immonen’s championship-level talent would not allow him to go out without a ﬁght. He made a great run-out in the next rack after a failed safety attempt by Van Boening and then came with a crusher of a break, but he was unable to come up with a clean shot on the 1 and was forced to play safe. Immonen earned that rack after a safety battle to make it 8-7 Van Boening, and his following break forced Van Boening into shooting a bank on the 1. The cue ball perfectly caromed the 4 downtable and simultaneously opened up the rack for a run-out. The entire tournament rested on one rack—one game for the title. The ﬁnal rack ended with Immonen breaking. With bated breath the crowd waited to see if he could complete the rally and win the tournament. Unfortunately for Immonen, his break did not bring him any rewards. Van Boening jumped up from the chair and with the cool, collected demeanor that has garnered him such success, he ran out the rack to claim the well-deserved title of champion.
Shane Van Boening
28 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 7th 9th 13th
Shane Van Boening Mika Immonen Larry Nevel Steve Moore Johnny Archer Josh Lewis Mike Davis Charlie Williams Yu Ram Cha Tony Crosby Butch Croft Neil Fujiwara Jerry Calderon $250 Scott Frost James Roberts Arlo Walsman
$3,000 $2,000 $1,500 $1,000 $700 $500 $350
October 2009 â—Š InsidePOOLmag.com 29
Dominguez Earns First Major Title by InsidePOOL Staff
scar Dominguez won his first major title at the Turning Stone Classic XIII, defeating Israel native Zion Zvi in the finals to take home the $8,000 first-place prize. The four-day, $25,000-added event was hosted by the Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, NY, and attracted a full 128-player field. Dominguez went unchallenged through the field, defeating players such as Shawn “Big Bubba” Putnam 9-6 and Corey Deuel 9-7 to reach Sunday’s matches. His first opponent Sunday, 2007 Player of the Year Shane Van Boening, bested first Marc “Spain” Vidal 9-2 and then David Grau 9-5 to meet Dominguez. Unfazed, Dominguez proceeded to send Van Boening to the one-loss side 9-5 to reach the hot seat match. In the other winners’ bracket match, it was Robb Saez versus Zion Zvi. Saez was responsible for sending the last female standing, Karen Corr, to the left side of the chart 9-5, while Zvi survived a close 9-7 match against Mhet Vergara. Zvi squeaked past Saez in yet another close match, this time hill-hill, to reach the hot seat match, where Dominguez dealt him his first loss 9-2. Corr, though, did have a stellar event. After a 9-0 whitewashing of Duane Toney, she immediately went on to face the fearsome Dennis “The Hatchetman” Hatch, a constant rival of hers on the Joss Northeast 9-Ball Tour. She bested Hatch 9-5 and went right on to defeat Steve Lillis 9-3 and then send Ernesto Dominguez 9-4 to the west side of the chart as well. Corr reached the final eight undefeated players but then suffered her first loss to Robb Saez 9-5 and then her second to Oscar Bonilla 9-5. On Sunday, four returned on the one-loss side as well. Deuel made it through a hill-hill thriller against Joey “JK” Korsiak to face off against Dave Grau Sunday. Grau was forced to play Mike “Iron Man” Davis in the previous round and won 9-4. Previously, though, Davis was responsible for the elimination of both the feared Dennis “The Hatchetman” Hatch 9-7 and Yu Ram Cha 9-5.
30 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Bonilla did his own share of damage on the west side, for having lost his first-round match, he worked his way back through, ending up winning ten matches in a row to reach the final four. ousting Dan Heidrich 9-6, Shawn “Big Bubba” Putnam 9-7, and finally Corr 9-5 to reach the final four on the one-loss side. His next opponent was Gabe Owen, who defeated Johnny Archer 9-7, Vidal 9-6, and finally Vergara 9-3.
Player of the Month of the Month
Bonilla, who hails from New York, continued on his streak Sunday to oust not only Gabe Owen 9-4 but Van Boening 9-4. But fourth place was as far as he could go, as he ran into a brick wall in the form of Deuel, who ousted him with a 9-1 victory. But Deuel was not to go any further, either, for Zvi was determined to earn a rematch ny Vaughn of Ste, mbers with of the Dominguez Jefferand sent Deuel home in third place 9-4.
dition to playing in O, with his mother n his location. d is excited to have lot of pool players 1st nce to compete in as a stable of loyal 2nd unity to win a3rd trip ships. “Kenny has 4th nyone who knows host leagues in5th his n.
Oscar Dominguez Zion Zvi Corey Deuel Oscar Bonilla Robb Saez Shane Van Boening Dave Grau Gabe Owen Joey Korsiak Mike Davis Karen Corr Mhet Vergara
$8,000 $5,000 $3,600 $2,600 $2,000 $1,600 $1,200
Having played solid pool throughout the tournament, Dominguez wasn’t going to stop in the finals. Both players employed excellent defensive play and strong kicking skills, but Dominguez had the edge throughout the match. The extended race came to an end when Dominguez sank the final 9 ball to win 13-5.
Ernesto Dominguez $850 Dennis Hatch Shawn Putnam Marc Vidal Jeremy Sossei $550 Julie Kelly Charlie Bryant Yu Ram Cha Dan Heidrich Bob Blackmore Ron Casanzio Johnny Archer
888-245-7665 October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 31
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Cohen Makes Pool History in Parsippany Straight Pool Crown Goes to France
by InsidePOOL Staff tephan Cohen made straight pool history when he captured the Predator 69th World 14.1 Championship crown August 29. In an event where names like Ortmann, Hohmann, Immonen dominated headlines all week, the relatively unknown Cohen of France surprised everyone, including himself. Cohen’s win capped off six days of the Predator 69th World 14.1 Championship presented by Ozone Billiards. The revived event is in its fourth consecutive year with help of industry giants such as Predator, Ozone Billiards, Brunswick Billiards, Simonis Cloth, Master Chalk, Aramith Balls, Accu-Stats, and the Laser Rack. Comet Billiards in Parsippany, NJ, hosted the event, which was held August 24-29. Ortmann looked the man to beat all week with his record four 100+ ball runs, but Immonen had been Germany’s Achilles heel. Immonen knocked out pre-event favorite Hohmann and then, in a dramatic
34 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
match full of reversal of leads, he upset Ortmann. In their match, Immonen took an early 60-ball lead, amounting to the first time Ortmann had trailed in any of his matches. The German came back though to take the lead, but Immonen retook it. He relinquished the table again, and it looked like it was all over as Ortmann needed a 70ball run to win, a mere formality compared to his other matches. At 181, Ortmann missed a combination a few inches from the hole, and Immonen knew it would be his last chance. He ran 55 and out to keep Ortmann at third place and away from a second world title in 14.1. “When Oliver was on his last inning, I knew if I ever got another chance that would be it. I decided to not try to be too cute, just play,” Immonen said after his match win. In a four-hour-long battle with USA’s Johnny Archer, Cohen defeated “The Scorpion” 200-104, sending Archer home with third place. This was Archer’s highest finish at the World 14.1, and he was USA’s highest finisher this year. So far since 1990, a USA player has not made it to the finals.
The final match was a first: Finland versus France. To date, The neither everanother won strong a World 14.1this billiards secondcountry semiﬁnalshad featured match-up, title, nor had a Frenchman or -woman ever claimed a time between Kim and Hofstatter. It did not start out auspiciously for Kim, though, when her cue ball ﬂ ew off the table on her ﬁ rst world title in pool. The match started with heavy favorite break and Hofstatter cleared to win the ﬁrst game. But Kim was Immonen 97-ball run. eventually held able to focuswith betteraafter that, and her He trademark aggressive styleCohen tokicked a devastating 145-15 a matter lessKim than an hour. in as she won the nextin three racks in of a row. fouled on a jump shot attempt on the 8 ball in the following game, and Hofstatter took that to draw within one, and then a carom into the 9 brought But Cohen way backofwith a errors couple the scoreclawed to even athis 3-all. A couple tactical by small but helpful runs, and Immonen made two more the Austria gave Kim a two-rack lead again, and then a long 2-9errors. combo put Kimboth on theplayers hill 6-3. A defensive battle over the 2with ball ImEventually were very close, left Hofstatter in charge of the table, and though she missed the 6 monen 160-145. Immonen hadwon another ball, Kimleading then missed a kick shot, and Hofstatter that rack.turn at the and it seemed he would close theofmatch Buttable, it was not enough, for Kim broke and ran out the ﬁout nal rack that match to win 7-4. still as expected, but at 181 he left himself with either
a jacked-up on against the 4 Corr, balland or though a kickthey shot Kim went cut on toshot the ﬁnals trad-on the ed the ﬁrst games,for Kim pulled away to abut two-rack after 12ball. Hetwo opted the kick shot onlylead managed to a break and then dry break bythe Corr.pocket. She brokeCohen and ran came hit the and ballrunand nota threaten out again despite a dicey shot on the 9 ball, but with a missed 2 back Cohen left“The himself a tough backwards ball inand the ran next out. rack, she allowed Irish Invader” back into the shot match,on andthe Corr4 grabbed by clearing thehit tableit tobeauticut ball asherthechance break shot but make This it 4-2 Kim. Though splitrun, the next Corrthe tookmatch fully. started histhey final andtwo heracks, closed advantage of poor position on the part of Kim to even the score at out 200-181 with a jubilant shout and the air. 5 apiece. Kim had to push out on her next break, andfist Corr in again pressed her advantage and began running out, but an ugly miscue
5 ball handed game to undefeated Kim. Corr then broke and made on the Cohen had thatgone throughout the a ball but had to play safe on the 1 ball. Kim made the tough entire pocketed balls. Emotionlong shotevent but had toand two-rail kick at the 2 1300 ball, which she clipped, hooking Corr behind the 6. Afterout getting her jump Corr went ally, Cohen squeaked a out few tearscue,and sent the cue ball into the 2 but left it by the side pocket. Kim pocketed the ball and went two rails for position on the 4. With that accomplished, Kim successfully cleared the remaining balls to win 7-5, collecting her ﬁrst WPBA title in two years.
to Danny Diliberto, Accu-Stats commentator and former billiards champion, and embraced him. Allison FIsher
“I owe this world title and everything I know of straight pool to this man. He gave me all his knowledge, and I wouldn’t have won without 1st Ga Young Kim him,” said Cohen in his victory speech to the fans.
Results: 2nd 3rd
Karen Corr Allison Fisher Gerda Hofstatter 5th Xiaoting Pan Vivian Villareal Helena Thornfeldt Monica Webb 9th Line Kjorsvik 1st Stephan Cohen Tracie Hines 2nd Mika Immonen Jasmin Ouschan Kyoko Sone 3rd Johnny Archer Kim White Oliver Ortmann Angelina Paglia 5th Thorsten Hohmann Jeanette Lee Kelly Fisher Tony Robles 17th Iris Ranola Charlie Williams Megan Smith Jonathan Fulcher Yu Ram Cha Michell Monk Brittany Tournament brackets available online at Bryant Morgan Steinman www.Insidepoolmag.com Kim Shaw Nicole Keeney
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Quickly to Rise Eric Crisp – Sugartree Cues by Fred Agnir
ost would-be cue makers develop their business in a gradual way. They may start out doing repair work, save enough money through repairs to purchase more equipment, and sell their early cues to local players. However, there is a small percentage of fortunate cue makers who have grown their business to a very prominent one in a short amount of time without that gradual growth. In Eric Crisp’s case, his tremendous talent combined with a little luck and opportunity provided by the Internet has taken the idea of fast-paced growth to a different level. Eric Crisp was born in the small town of Sugartree, OH, in 1978. Raised in Appalachian Ohio, Eric grew up in and around wood and wood-working, as his family members ran the gamut of trades from loggers and sawyers to custom cabinet builders. He also grew up playing pool, and he and his two older brothers would play money games as often as they could. “My oldest brother was a really strong player,” recalled Crisp. “I got kind of hooked when I always saw him with a big wad of cash!” Around the World Crisp worked as a machinist for a nuclear maintenance crew. His boss was a retired U.S. Navy admiral who spent much of the time motivating the younger workers to join the military. His spirited speeches eventually convinced Eric to sign up. In 1999, Eric Crisp enlisted in the Air Force. The plan was to stay in the military for a few years and then return back to work for the admiral again. However, Eric stayed in the Air Force for more than and few years and never returned to that maintenance job. 36 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Eric met his future wife Tanya while both were stationed in Arizona. The two stayed in touch, reconnecting in Korea and then again in Alaska before eventually marrying. “Tanya is an Alaskan native, and you don’t marry an Eskimo unless you want to live in Alaska,” he explained jokingly. While Eric was stationed in Korea, he made his ﬁrst cue. He had owned several cues along the way ranging from department store models to cues from custom cue shops. He used a wooden lathe on the base to ﬁx his broken ferrule. The experience excited him enough to try to make a cue. “I never went into it at all with the idea of making money or selling cues to people,” said Crisp. “ I thought it was just something fun to do on the weekend.” Eric purchased equipment for building cues when he relocated to Alaska. Living in America’s frozen frontier, there really was nobody near that he could ask to show him how start. Though two of the best cue makers in the world, Mike Bender and Thomas Wayne, live in the state, Alaska remains a pretty large area to simply make a trek to ask for advice. Additionally, Eric wasn’t really looking to take cue-building to any speciﬁc level other than do it as a tinkering hobby.
He started by buying wood and getting bar cues from the local watering holes, using the back of a pool hall to set up shop. His ﬁrst attempts at building cues weren’t any good, and he continued with trial and error. It took about two years of experimentation during his spare time before he built a cue that was worthy of all of the effort. That being said, he really wasn’t selling many of these cues. But on the other hand, he wasn’t actively trying to build a business. No Longer a Hobby The explosion came about largely because of the Internet. As a member of one of the growing Internet-based billiard forums, Eric shared thoughts with and received advice from other ﬂedglings and veteran cue makers from around the world. After posting his information and some cue photos on the site, a forum member from Eric’s home state of Ohio purchased a cue. The cue was so well received by the purchaser’s local area that after a week, orders began to ﬂood in for new Sugartree Cues by Eric Crisp. Without much forethought of running a cue business, Eric ﬁlled order after order, thrilled with the notion that people in the world actually liked his cues. He received so many orders that, given his methods and time to make a single cue, he quickly had an order list that guaranteed that he always had a customer waiting on a cue, probably for the rest of his life. In just a few weeks, Eric Crisp went from not really considering cue-making as a business to being inundated with custom orders from literally around the world. His weekend hobby turned into a booming profession at a click of a mouse button.
After the events of 9/11, Eric decided to leave the military to relieve the family stress of both he and his wife answering the call of duty. The two currently live in Alamogordo, NM, where Tanya is stationed, but plan on eventually returning to in Alaska after Tanya retires. Eric befriended longtime cue maker Wes Hunter, who also lives in Alamogordo. Combined, they are able to leverage their buying power for supplies as well as help each other by offering the use of each other’s equipment. Hunter has a big shop with much more equipment than Eric. “I had already established the way I built cues, so his cues are his and mine are mine, but we share some behind-the-scenes activities,” said Crisp. Eric’s purpose in building a cue in the ﬁrst place was to make something that made the game easier to play with. To that point, he stresses that a cue should feel good in the hands. Speciﬁcally, his cues need to feel good in his hands. He has put the bulk of his effort into the inside construction of his cues as well as the overall size, diameters, balance, and taper to make his cues feel comfortable. “When you have a cue you can trust, it’s just easier to play with,” he commented. “Comfort level is everything.” HighEnd Wood in Plain Jane Cues Eric feels he has accomplished tailoring his cue design to what he initially intended, but he readily admits that as a cue builder he is always evolving. That idea also spills over to the look of his cues. He hasn’t done many inlays, as he has been concentrating on construction. Once he feels he really has locked down his cue construction, he plans to add more fancy inlays to his work. In the meantime, Eric enjoys using natural materials that are found in Alaska, including moose antler, walrus ivory, and whale bone to accentuate and help deﬁne the look of his cues. He prides himself in using top-grade wood in his simple cues that he believes most other cue makers only reserve for higher-end and fancy cues. His motto: High-end wood in Plain Jane cues. Eric spends much of his time going all over the world seeking out and purchasing the best wood he can. “I make several trips a year. I have a big diesel pickup that I haul a double-axle trailer behind it going out looking for wood,” shared Eric. “That’s part of the fun of it for me.”
For the time being, Eric Crisp still treats his cue making as a fun distraction. He proudly states that October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 37
he is now a stay-at-home dad with his daughter and son. He is in an enviable position to not have to depend onSoutheast cue-making for inRegional Roundup come but welcomes the creative outlet to keep him occupied. His popularity initiated by the Internet has easily been sustained beUPCOMING Southeastern TOURNAMENTS cause of the simple facts that his cues look, play, and feel great.
9/5-6 9/5-6 9/6 9/12-13 9/12-13 9/13 10/3-4 10/3-4 10/4 10/9-11 10/17-18 10/18 10/18-24 10/24-25 10/25
Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Florida State 9-Ball Championships Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour Jacoby Cues Carolina Tour Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour Jacoby Cues Carolina Tour Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour Seminole Pro Tour Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour
38 InsidePOOL Magazine â—Š October 2009
Burrkats Billiards Monroe, NC 704-226-9650 $1,500 Amateurs//Advanced In other words, Sugartree 813-814-2777 Cues deliver. To expect any new cue Strokers 2 Tampa, FL $2,500 Open a big on the industry$1,000 in a small amount of Burrkats Billiardsmaker to make such Monroe, NCimpact704-226-9650 Amateurs Sharks-N-Shooterstime is highly unlikely Rocky considering Mount, NC 252-937-8882 $1,000 Opencue makers the sheer number of new Classic Billiards Conyers, GA 770-679-5278 $2,000 Open Fortunately for his fans and$1,000 customers, Eric Crisp Classic Billiards appearing every day. Conyers, GA 770-679-5278 Amateurs Fast Eddieâ€™s Sports Bar Sugartree Cues Goldsboro, NC 919-759-0071 $1,000indeed Openhave made and have exceeded expectations and Paradise Billiards aClub NC $1,500 amount Amateurs/Advanced huge impact onCharlotte, the industry in704-900-7525 a remarkably short of time. Paradise Billiards Club Charlotte, NC 704-900-7525 $500 Amateurs Strokers Billiards Palm Harbor, FL 727-786-6683 $6,000 Open Blue Fox Billiards Winchester, VA 540-665-2114 $2,000 Open Blue Fox Billiards Winchester, VA 540-665-2114 $1,000 Amateurs Chesapeake Conference Center Chesapeake, VA 757-499-8900 $100,000 Open Diamond Billiards Midlothian, VA 804-794-8787 $2,000 Open Diamond Billiards Midlothian, VA 804-794-8787 $1,000 Amateurs
INDUSTRY INK Lucasi Cues Focuses on the Players’ Competitive Edge - Technology and Performance the Masses Can Afford
by Lea Andrews
im Lucas started manufacturing pool cues to give every pool player a competitive edge, and that’s why Lucasi’s motto is, “Feel the rush of winning. It’s your game. It’s your Lucasi.” Though technically retired, the owner of Lucasi and Lucasi Hybrid Cues still visits the ofﬁce every week and tests all the prototypes personally, though he trusts his daughter, Jamie Lucas Bond, and her team to do just about everything. “He always impressed upon us to engineer, design, and build all our cues with one goal in mind: give players the maximum playability and performance,” said Bond, who’s been under her father’s wing for about 17 years. “He taught us it’s all about the players and how we can continually advance our sport with technology to take them to the next level of their game. That’s what we’re here for: to engineer, design, and build the ultimate playing machine. Not only do we strive to do this, but also to offer it at a price the masses can afford. Why work so hard on a product if it’s only for the rich and elite? Nothing gives us more pleasure than to have players tell us how much they love their Lucasi and what a difference it has made in their game. If we keep doing that, we’ll always be in business.” In The Beginning Lucas’ roots in the industry are as an avid player who went on to open several poolrooms in Jacksonville, Florida—as many as four at one time. As the years went by, he began to notice voids in the market, leading him to go from retail to distribution and, ﬁnally, to manufacturing. “It was really hard for a small retailer to carry high-end cues, because back then, Meucci was a $10,000 minimum, Joss was a $5,000 minimum, and McDermott was a $5,000 40 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
minimum,” explained Bond. “Retailers had to really invest a lot of money to give players a good selection of cues.” Once Lucas became a distributor, he made it possible for retailers to spend a minimum of $50 and still get Joss, Meucci, and McDermott cues. Business was good for everyone, but he saw yet another void in the market: the lack of an affordable, good-quality cue. It was that void that ushered in the birth of Lucasi Cues. ���Lucasi is known for being the best value in the market,” said Bond. “It’s a high-performing, good-quality cue with lots of inlays, exotic woods, and technology, all at a price players can afford.” And in the past couple of years, the Lucasi team has come out with the Lucasi Hybrid, a line of low-deﬂection cues that range in price from $289 to $1,200. “No matter which cue a player purchases from Lucasi Hybrid, it offers all the same technology from tip to butt, including features that usually cost extra in other lines, like a Moori tip.” Eight-Piece Radial-Consistency Shaft While a traditional shaft is made from one solid piece of wood, a high-end, low-deﬂection shaft, such as a Lucasi Hybrid shaft, is far more complex. “We take the same core of hard-rock
maple a one-piece shaft would start from, and instead of spinning it down, we cut it into pie-shaped pieces, with the grain of each splice aligned to the center. Then we test each piece for strength and durability: measurements determine whether a piece becomes part of break or jump cue or part of a shaft construction; the weaker pieces are recycled.” With this method, the natural weak points found in a onepiece shaft are eliminated. “When hitting the ball, the power ﬂows straight up the shaft, not hindered by any grain, and allows for the ultimate transfer of energy throughout the cue, resulting in a 360-degree sweet spot.” Bond explained the beneﬁts further, “A lot of players tend to rotate their cue, looking for the spot which gives them the best hit and feel. An eight-piece shaft provides a uniform hit and feel no matter which way the cue is turned, so a player doesn’t have to rotate it—no matter which way it’s turned, it feels the same, it feels great. That’s why we call it the 360-degree sweet spot, or Total Sweet Spot Construction™.” Lucasi furthers the low-deﬂection component with a low-mass ferrule. “There are other brands on the market touting less-deﬂection technology, but they offer only a
less-deﬂection ferrule; no one else offers an eight-piece radial shaft in the $199 price point.” The Hybrid shaft is topped off with a high-end, 11-layer Moori medium tip, which is a $25 upgrade compared to other brands on the market. More Technology in the Butt Lucasi doesn’t stop there. The same principle of combining like-strength, pie-shaped pieces is used to construct the butt, which has a four-piece construction and a Uni-Loc® joint. What visibly and tactilely separates the Hybrid from other cues is its wrap, or rather, its grip. The Lucasi Hybrid design team discovered the basis of their X-Shox Dampening System in golf clubs, which leading golf manufacturers used to eliminate vibration for better follow-through. “We said, ‘Wow, we need to ﬁnd out if this will enhance the playability of cues.’ We engineered the ﬁrst wrap and started testing,” said Bond. “We were the ﬁrst brand to introduce the uniform golf-clublike grip with the patented X-Shox Dampening System™. Our team of engineers took it a step further with ﬁve or six different G5 grip patterns, because we know everybody’s touch and feel is different. We always encourage people to pick it up, feel it, touch it, be sure it’s the grip pattern that feels best to them.”
folks at Lucasi to share the news. “It won me $1,100 in a break contest. It was awesome!” he told them. And Lucasi Hybrid’s Air Hog jump cue is also a favorite of the Artistic Pool Team, over half of whose members have purchased them. New Technology on the Horizon The engineering team at Lucasi is always looking for ways to improve on what they already have, looking at most other sporting industries for inﬂuence. Having already studied tennis, golf, and baseball, they pulled carbon ﬁber from the racecar industry. Carbon ﬁber, which is lightweight and virtually indestructible, makes up the ferrule of the Big Beulah and the Air Hog. “We knew we needed something strong on a jump and break cue, but we needed it to be lightweight on the tip so it didn’t kill the playability of the cue.” Feel the Rush All the research and technology comes down to getting a high-performance cue to the players, and as more and more people snatch the Lucasi Hybrid up, Jim Lucas’ original dream is coming alive. Everyday, more and more players get the competitive edge of Lucasi, proving his slogan true: “Feel the rush of winning. It’s your game. It’s your Lucasi.”
All of that technology, from tip to butt, is available on every cue in the Lucasi Hybrid line, and every Lucasi Hybrid cue comes with a lifetime guarantee, even against warpage. The Lucasi team attends as many players’ shows as they can to get the product out to the people. “We always have a table at each show we attend so players can try them and tell us their opinions. We want to know, because it enables us improve on the product. We love it when a skeptic comes up and assumes the golf-club-like grip is weird or funny because they’re so used to Irish linen or no wrap. We say, ‘Just try it. We want to hear what you think about the hit and feel of this cue compared to the other high-end cue you’re currently playing with.’ Nine times out of ten, they purchase a cue before leaving our booth. They are shocked at how great it feels and at the accuracy and solid hit it delivers.” In the Hands of the Pros It’s not just the masses who beneﬁt from the Hybrid technology—Shaun Wilkie and Thorsten Hohmann both play with Hybrid Fusion cues, which have metal inlays. After Wilkie won a break contest at Comet Billiards with a break cue prototype, the Big Beulah 2 (modeled after the Callaway Big Bertha driver, complete with super-sized sweet spot and a 14-millimeter tip), he called the October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 41
Stripes Help Wanted
n my last article we talked about several aspects of the training program new candidates receive when attending the BCAPL national referee certification class. We discussed the fact that a great deal of class time is devoted to interpersonal and communication skills, and that those skills establish a solid foundation for becoming a professional referee regardless of the specific rules used at an event. Continuing that theme this month, I strongly believe we must recruit and develop more referees here in the USA. We need a cadre of qualified officials to draw from if we expect our sport to grow and prosper. Although the state of professional pool may not yet have achieved the same acceptance as other sports, progress is being made. We must remain optimistic and be ready when more doors open. Every major sport has its own referees. They are highly trained, dedicated people who love their game and are passionate about what they do. They, along with their respective organizations, realize the importance of providing competitors with the best possible officials their sport has to offer. If pool can adopt that philosophy, we will instill confidence in our players and demonstrate to the public that pool referees are every bit as well trained and professionally qualified as NFL and NBA referees or MLB umpires. With limited exceptions, how many times have you attended a pool tournament and noticed an absence of officials, or at least an inadequate number of them? It shouldn’t come as a surprise. It’s simply because there are not enough trained referees to go around. Think about how many millions of people play pool in this country, and compare figure that to how many officials we have. I would estimate there are only a few hundred certified referees nationwide. I realize that of the millions who play most are recreational players, but nevertheless the ratio is staggering. So why become a referee? It should not be for money. This isn’t a path to wealth, although you generally receive some form of compensation and/or expenses. Here are a few reasons to consider:
42 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Refereeing enables you to give something back to the game. You accomplish this by educating players while performing your duties. For example, when you explain a rule or its intent, you are also conveying information players will benefit from knowing in the future. Also, there are times when spectators may ask why you enforced a specific rule or what rule applied in a certain situation. Educating non-players makes their viewing experience more enjoyable, helps keeps their interest and makes them want to come back. Becoming a referee helps you as a player. Trust me on this one. Having the insight of a referee when playing gives you an advantage. Knowing things like what rule governs a situation, what calls may be protested and when, what equipment is legal or not, and what rights you and your opponent have are examples of the benefits of being a trained official. It also helps you understand why the referee who came to your table took the action they did, said what they said, or failed to explain something otherwise required by the rules. And knowing the physics associated with ballto-ball contact is invaluable when you are playing. As a referee, you could have the best seat in the house. Because top referees are always in demand, one day you may find yourself at center stage refereeing a championship match between two of the world’s greatest players. I’ve been fortunate to have had that opportunity, and it’s an exciting and unforgettable experience. I’ve always felt that referees and tournament officials are the guardians of our game. Governing bodies and player organizations rely upon them to enforce fair play. Referees protect the sport’s integrity and can have a direct bearing on how we are perceived. It’s a challenging an important responsibility, but the rewards are extremely gratifying.
Please think about it. Help the game you love.
Ken Shuman of Sacramento, CA, is one of the top professional referees and tournament directors in the country. He is the referee instructor for the BCA Pool League’s national referee school and is considered by his peers to be an expert on the rules of play. Ken has served as head referee for the International Pool Tour and currently directs or co-directs several major events, including the Reno Open, the Derby City Classic, and the U.S. Bar Table and U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships. Contact him at email@example.com.
BILLIARD EDUCATION FOUNDATION AWARDS 2009 SCHOLARSHIPS
The Billiard Education Foundation (BEF) Academic Scholarship Program is an annual program that is divided into two categories: BEF Excellence in Education scholarship ($5,000 awarded over a two-year term) and BEF Aiming for Higher Education scholarships (7 x $1,000 award). The objective of the BEF Academic Scholarship Program is to grant scholarships to high school seniors who have benefited from the sport of billiards and are pursuing a college education. The scholarship criteria includes maintaining a 3.0 cumulative GPA (on a 4.0 scale); must have received an ACT score of 23 or higher, or a SAT score of 1050 or higher; must be accepted to an accredited undergraduate academic program by June 1, 2009; carry at least 12 hours per semester; must have submitted a 500-1000 word essay on how billiards has been an integral part of his/her life; and must have submitted a letter outlining academic achievements, leadership and/or community service work and a description of the applicant's background and career objectives.
Congratulations to the following 2009 winners: BEF “Excellence in Education” Scholarship ($5,000 awarded over a two- year term) - Jake Stauch of Summerville, SC BEF “Aiming for Higher Education” Scholarships ($1,000 award) - Zachary Bradley of Placerville, CA - Grant Carter of Centennial, CO - Douglas Done of Rochester, NY - Sean Drimmel of Spring Valley, CA - Lisa Lamir of Weymouth, MA - Sean Lehman of Nelsonville, OH - Lindsey Reynolds of Friendswood, TX Essays may be viewed on the BEF website at www.BilliardEducation.org.
ACS Instructors Test Billiard Training Aids & Devices
The American CueSports Alliance (ACS) Instructor/Coach Program has begun to offer an “ACS Instructor Seal of Approval” product review service. Manufacturers of instructional billiard devices may submit their products to an esteemed committee of some of the top billiard instructors in the nation for product evaluation and feedback. Each product is tested and considered by five top-level ACS instructors. Each reviewer posts his findings, comments, and opinions on a “Product Seal of Approval” page on the ACS website. Instructors on the product review board currently include Jerry Briesath, Mark Finkelstein, Joseph Mejia, Tom Simpson, Ken Tewksbury, and Roy Yamane. The reviewers are not paid for this service. Product marketers may quote reviewer comments or reference the ACS web link. Interested inventors and manufacturers may contact the ACS at www.americancuesports. org for details and instructions on the submission process.
44 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
WPBA Pro Gerda Hofstatter Endorses CueTrack™
Billiard Dynamics today announced that it has established an endorsement agreement with WPBA Pro and former world champion Gerda Hofstatter. Hofstatter agreed to the deal after a several month evaluation of the CueTrack™ stroke and alignment trainer. “I’ve been waiting for a pool and billiard training device like this for years. Straight cueing, with follow-through, are the keys to a perfect stroke, and anyone wanting to improve their game should invest there first,” Gerda said. When asked who could benefit from practicing with a CueTrack, Gerda said, “CueTrack is not a gimmick. As a seasoned tour professional, I was surprised. Within one week, CueTrack helped me see and correct a long-standing imperfection in my stroke. Now, I start every practice session with 250 CueTrack repetitions. Everyone wanting to improve his or her game should own one. It’s a great product and the Billiard Dynamics team is fun to work with. We share the belief that properly used training aids, especially those providing immediate feedback, enhance ability at every level of play." CueTrack developers Anthony Mattina and Randy Morris responded by saying, “We’re thrilled that Gerda is endorsing CueTrack. She’s a worldclass player and instructor. We knew we had a good product, but having someone of Gerda’s stature onboard is strong confirmation. Gerda’s already promoting CueTrack on her website, www.GerdaHofstatter.com. We’re also excited to see her playing so well, and we look forward to a long relationship.”
Brand In Entertainment Gets in Pool, Poker and Pain's Corner
Premier LA-based brand integration firm, Brand In Entertainment, has joined up with Pool Poker and Pain creator Blair Thein to elevate the level of the show’s offering. Brand In Entertainment (BIE) works directly with national and international brands, seamlessly integrating them into the heartbeat of popular culture. BIE brings over 35 years of advertising experience, along with an impressive roster of clients who appreciate the effectiveness of brand integration. Blair Thein is the sports and entertainment visionary who created and built the breakthrough concept called "Pool, Poker, and Pain." PPP combines three of the hottest sports on the planet: pool, poker and mixed martial arts (MMA), in a character-based reality show. The show will culminate in a live event at a Las Vegas casino, making sports and entertainment history. "Pool, Poker, and Pain" will introduce a multitalented, new breed of athlete: one who has the charisma, heart, will, and talent that it takes to grab the attention of a new breed of entertainment consumer. In approaching BIE with the concept for Pool, Poker and Pain, Thein was passionate about ensuring that his vision is executed through a creative approach that will maintain the honor and authenticity that each sport/game deserves. To maintain the highest standards in all three disciplines and draw the most discerning fans, Thein has invested the last four years developing this concept through recruiting a pool of multi-talented coaches and contestants. Simonis Cloth. Billiards industry leader Ivan Lee of Iwan Simonis, Inc. has recently given Blair his support in this project, stating, "I decided to sponsor [Blair Thein's] event to push the boundaries of pool as a universal game of nerves and skill and to see how it fares as one of the three disciplines combined to provide a new kind of entertainment and interest in our sport." Rolfe Auerbach, president and CEO of Brand In Entertainment, also mentioned that he is excited to be a part of the branding of this remarkable concept, ensuring that today's savvy sports fans and brands can be a part of the future of sports and entertainment. BIE will help Thein not only shock the sporting world, but also provide a platform to engage viewers in an exciting way, spicing up the dialogue around water coolers worldwide.
LiquidWick and McDermott Partner
LiquidWick Pool Cues announced that it has entered into a strategic partnership with McDermott Cue Mfg., LLC, of Menomonee Falls, WI, to manufacture, market, and distribute billiards products for world billiard star Jeanette “The Black Widow” Lee and top motorcycle brand Orange County Choppers. LiquidWick arrived on the billiards scene a little over three years ago and set out to revolutionize the sport by aligning itself with the best partners in the over-600-yearold industry. “LiquidWick is thrilled to align itself with a company like McDermott, whose reputation as one of the top cue manufacturers and distributors in the world will complement the new products being created for the global brands of ‘The Black Widow’ and Orange County Choppers,” said Rich Gustin, LiquidWick partner. LiquidWick expects to have Black Widow billiard products in retail locations, including Sears, by early fall. The Orange County Choppers products are in development and scheduled to hit the retail marketplace in time for the 2009 holiday season. LiquidWick has also contracted with Orange County Choppers to have a custom bike built that will incorporate a Black Widow and billiards theme. “I am thrilled about the new cue lines in development,” said Jeanette Lee. “I know that the partnership of LiquidWick and McDermott will manufacture highquality, affordable cues. I also am intrigued by the new OCC LiquidWick Chopper, which sounds like great fun.” The next step for LiquidWick is the development of a billiards-themed restaurant chain that is being spearheaded by LiquidWick partner Rich Gustin, who has over twenty years of successful major hotel and restaurant development experience. The flagship location for the entertainment and restaurant venue is expected to be located in Nevada. LiquidWick Pool Cues is a cue manufacturing and media production and promotion company endorsed by world billiards star Jeanette “The Black Widow” Lee. The company also owns the billiards product license rights for top motorcycle brand Orange County Choppers. LiquidWick was the first billiards company to air a half-hour infomercial on national television. Their media production arm has produced both “The LiquidWick Infomercial” and “Trick Shot Mania,” a DVD featuring Andy “The Magic Man” Segal. October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 45
National Billiard Academy Offers Industry Insider Discounts
Master instructor Tom Simpson is offering $300 scholarships for anyone working full-time in any aspect of the billiard industry. The scholarships will be applied to the player’s tuition at one of the National Billiard Academy’s 3-Day Weekend Intensives. “So many people I meet in the pool industry got into it because they loved the game, but they barely play anymore. Some don’t play as well as they feel they should, given their position in the industry, so they don’t play. Some have just lost the fun. I think that’s a shame, and I want to do something about it,” explained Simpson. In addition to the obvious benefits of learning to play better, pool school graduates gain knowledge, confidence, and credibility on billiard topics. And that can turn into more sales, better products, and reconnecting to the game. For many in the billiard industry, the total cost of attending a 3-Day Weekend Intensive will be a deductible (and justifiable) business expense. The Weekend Intensives are offered regularly at the main school (Columbus OH), and periodically in selected cities nationwide. Listen to an audio overview of the Intensive at http://poolclinics.com/audio/audio.html, or just click on Tom’s photo at www.poolclinics.com. To get the current schedule or claim your Industry Insider Scholarship, contact Tom Simpson at 614-975-8337 or insiders@PoolClinics.com.
Jim Murnak Introduces Live Cameras Into Major New York Poolrooms For years, Jim Murnak has made his impact on the pool world in the form of beautiful custom cue cases, but he’s now expanded his reach to include the Internet video sector. New Yorker Murnak has made it possible for people all over the world to have a taste of the thriving New York City pool scene by airing live feed from several pool rooms every day on his website, www.go4pool.net. “My cameras, some of which air twenty-four hours, are set up in Master Billiards, Amsterdam Billiard Club, and Raxx Pool Room, and there are more to come, so there’s always potential for viewers to catch great match-ups without having to wait for tournaments,” stated Murnak. “Just the other day, one of the Amsterdam cameras caught a friendly game between Tony Robles and Jeanette Lee." But he has also taken live stream a step further. “I’m trying to give pool enthusiasts something new and a little different to look forward to each week,” said Murnak of “The Pool Show,” which airs Mondays at 10 p.m. EST on www.go4pool. net. Set in Master Billiards, one of the mainstays of the New York City pool community, the program blends humor segments with good old-fashioned action and is complete with knowledgeable commentary. In the works for later this summer is “The Tony and Gail Show,” which will be shot at Amsterdam Billiards and hosted by Tony Robles and Gail Glazebrook, one of pool's most recognizable couples. “With live feed, weekly shows, and articles written by passionate players about their passion, we’ve got something for everyone,” says Murnak. “No doubt you’ve heard a lot about the New York pool scene. Now you can see it for yourself.”
46 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Bringing The Banquet
To The Fans! 2009 BcA HAll of fAme BAnqueT at the U.S. Open 9-Ball Championship Thursday, Oct. 22, 2009 • 5:00 pm – 7:45 pm Marriott Chesapeake Hotel • Chesapeake, VA
- JoHnny ArcHer 4-time World 9-Ball Champion 25 Pro Tour titles 12-time Team USA appearances
- Allison fisHer -
3-time World Champion 5-time Tournament of Champions 53 WPBA Classic Tour titles
For the first time ever, the annual BCA Hall of Fame Banquet will be held in conjunction with the game’s longest-running pro tournament, the U.S. Open 9-Ball Championship. Be part of history. Join the United States Billiard Media Association and the Billiard Congress of America, as Johnny Archer and Allison Fisher — two of the greatest players of all time — are formally inducted into the BCA Hall of Fame! TickeTs:
$55 before Oct. 18 ($60 at the U.S. Open) $500 for a Table of 10 (single payment only)
or de r AT:
www.usBmA.com/Halloffame2009 or Call 312-341-1110
location,” said Jefferson County league operator Jason Bowman.
APA Player of the Month
APA Player Player of of the the Mont Mon APA
APA Player Player of of the the Month Month APA
October APA Player of the Month
The APA Player of the month for October is Steve Pequignot. He is a member of the East Central Indiana APA. Steve has been an APA member since 2007 and currently plays on two teams, serving as a team captain on one of them. He began playing pool at the 9 and as a isSkill Level 6. of Ste, Theage APAofPlayer of is thecurrently Month for rated September Kenny Vaughn
T T Steve’s goal though is to attain what very few APA mem-
The APA Player of the Month for September is Kenny Vaughn of Ste, Genevieve,Mo. Mo. Vaughn Vaughnisisone oneofofthe theinaugural inauguralmembers membersofofthe theJefferJefferGenevieve, son sonCounty CountyAPA APAand andisisaaskill skilllevel level77shooter shooterinin8-ball. 8-ball. InInaddition additiontotoplaying playinginin the APA, Vaughnalso alsoruns runs Kenny’sSkill Bar&&Level GrillininBarnhart, MO, with hismother mother bersthe ever achieve—the coveted 7Barnhart, rating.MO, Hewith is his alAPA, Vaughn Kenny’s Bar Grill Dorthia. Vaughn hosts number tournaments andleagues leagues hislocation. location. Vaughn hosts ofoftournaments and ininhis waysDorthia. working hard onaanumber his game and helping to improve his Vaughnhas hasbeen beenplaying playingpool poolsince sincehehewas was55years yearsold oldand andisisexcited have Vaughn team. Steve enjoys blogging about his team’s matches and excited post-totohave theAPA APAininhis hislocation locationand andininJefferson JeffersonCounty. County. “We “Wehave haveaalot lotofofpool poolplayers players the ing pictures of his teammates ongreat his that localweAPA League’s website. hereininJefferson Jefferson County,sosoit’s it’s nowhave haveaachance chance competeinin here County, great that we now totocompete “Steve is very well liked in the league and has become veryofofloyal the world’s largest pool league,” said Vaughn. His poolroom has astable stable loyal the world’s largest pool league,” said Vaughn. His poolroom has aa popular player who regularly receives great remarks about his customers who love the sport and are excited about the opportunity to win a trip customers who love the sport and are excited about the opportunity to win a trip Las Vegas competeininthe theAPA APANational NationalTeam TeamChampionships. Championships. “Kennyhas has leveltotoof good sportsmanship,” said league operator Tammie Jones. Las Vegas totocompete “Kenny beeninstrumental instrumentaliningetting gettingthe theAPA APAgoing goingininhis hislocation. location. Anyone Anyonewho whoknows knows been poolininJefferson JeffersonCounty Countyknows knowsKenny’s, Kenny’s,and andwe’re we’reproud proudtotohost hostleagues leaguesininhis his pool location,”said saidJefferson JeffersonCounty Countyleague leagueoperator operatorJason JasonBowman. Bowman. location,”
44 InsidePOOL Magazine September 2009
888-245-7665 888-245-7665 48 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Abraham Aces Blaze Tour Blaze 9-Ball Tour / Deptford, NJ by Jose Burgos
Eddie Abraham took home another first-place win on the Blaze 9-Ball Tour, triumphing over Bruce Nagle in the finals. This $1,000-added event was hosted by Hot Shot Billiards in Deptford, NJ, August 2. Abraham went undefeated through the tournament, blazing a trail through the winners’ side of the chart with victories over Bob Whitfield 7-5, Jack McPoyle 7-1, Chuck Roth 7-5, and Joey Testa 7-6. Nagle took charge of the bottom half of the bracket, winning over CJ Fought 7-1, Bob Mapes 7-4, Erin McManus 7-3, and Mike Lizzio 7-5.
Eddie Abraham, Bruce Nagle, Julian Carvell, Vincent Caramanna
Inevitably, Nagle and Abraham met up in the hot seat match. It was a close one, with Abraham pulling away late in the match to win 7-5 to send Nagle to the one-loss side. There he was faced with Shaun “Get Some” Wilkie in the semifinals. In that one-sided match, Nagle ran away with a 7-4 win.
Everton Evades Carr at Tri-State Billiards Tour
In the double-elimination final match, it was a rematch between Nagle and Abraham, with Nagle having to best his opponent twice for the win. Nagle put up a good fight in the first set, but it was all Abraham winning 7-4 to take the event.
Though he suffered a brief setback on the winners’ side, Paul Everton wasn’t deterred and went on to victory at the Tri-State Tour stop August 1. Everton was one of the 24-player field that gathered for the $500-added event at Sandcastle Billiards in Edison, NJ.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 7th
Eddie Abraham Bruce Nagle Shaun Wilkie Joey Testa Mike Lizzio Matt Krah Chuck Fought Sr. Sam Quinzi
$950 $460 $285 $175 $100 $70
Dailey Dusts the Comet Billiards Field Tri-State Tour / Parsippany, NJ by Lea Andrews
Duane Dailey, who is still somewhat new to the Tri-State Tour, suffered a late loss August 8 before rebounding to win it all. The $500-added, B-D event drew a field of 34 to Comet Billiards in Parsippany, NJ. Dailey arrived in the hot seat match following an 8-6 win over Teddy Lubis, meeting up with Mike Watson, who was coming off his toughest match to that point, a 7-6 win over Emily Duddy. With a 6-3 score over Dailey, Watson sat in the hot seat to await his final opponent. On the one-loss side, Pete Brennan won 6-3 over Rhio-Anne Flores and 6-5 over Jason Egeln to face Duddy, where he came up short 7-4. T.J. Smithers, with strong wins over Antonio Navarro 6-2 and Guy Iannuzzi 7-1, went on to meet up with Lubis. With a 7-3 victory, it was Lubis who moved on to Duddy, triumphing 7-5 to land in the semifinal rematch against Dailey. Unfortunately for Lubis, the outcome was the same as their earlier match, although he did notch up one more game to make it a hill-hill match. With an 8-7 win over Lubis, Dailey earned his own rematch against Watson. In the modified final set, Watson, as the undefeated player, would win if he reached 6 games first, while if Dailey reached 6 first, the race would extend to 8. As the finals moved along, though, neither player demonstrated his true potential, and sloppy play from each gave the other plenty of chances. It was Dailey who reached 6 first, and though Watson wasn’t far behind, keeping up to push the match hill-hill, Dailey took the final rack and the win.
50 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Tri-State Tour / Edison, NJ by Lea Andrews
Starting off with a string of hill-hill matches and edging past Angelo Fiorino, Andrew Kane, and Robert Perkins, Everton’s only setback came in the form of 2008-2009 B-Class Player of the Year Gary Murgia, who kept Everton from getting a shot at the hot seat by sending him west 7-3. Phil Carr, riding a hill-hill win over James DeLillo, took the hot seat match hill-hill as well, coming out on top to be last man standing on the right side of the bracket. Over on the left side, one of last season’s “Most Improved Players,” Ben Sadowski got past John Egeln 7-5 only to fall to Perkins, who last round had knocked aside CClass Player of the Year and Sportsman of the Year David Fitzpatrick 9-6. Next up for Perkins was DeLillo, whom he brushed aside 7-3 to move into the quarterfinals against Everton, who’d just survived yet another hill-hill match, this time against Jeremiah DeLeo. It wasn’t the last for Everton, though, as he took it hill-hill with Perkins just as he had in one of the earlier rounds. The outcome was the same, of course, and Perkins sat in third while Everton moved on to the semifinal match against Murgia, and keeping Murgia one game shy of the hill at 7-5, Everton moved on to his final victim. Everton, as the lower-ranked player, started the modified final match with one game on the wire and took the first two games to get up 3-0, but Carr rallied to get it to 4-4. Everton, managing to capitalize on a few errors on Carr’s part, got the score to 7-4 to turn the set into a race to 9. The two then traded games to get the score to 8-6, and with Carr’s shot on the 9 ball next headed straight for the pocket, it appeared the score was about to be 8-7. When the nine hung up in the pocket, though, a handshake from Carr gave the tournament win to Everton.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Duane Dailey $700 Mike Watson $400 Teddy Lubis $255 Emily Duddy $140 Pete Brennan $64 T.J. Smithers
1st Paul Everton $500 2nd Phil Carr 3rd Gary Murgia $120 4th Robert Perkins
Regional Roundup Miller Makes a Comeback
Predator 9-Ball Tour / Parsippany, NJ by Alison M. Fischer Mike Miller made his second-ever stop on the Predator 9-Ball Tour and walked away with the first-place prize, besting George San Souci in the finals. The August 15-16 stop was hosted by Comet Billiards in Parsippany, NJ, and boasted a $1,000-added prize fund. After victories over Christian Smith, Richie Vazzano, Raj Vannala, and Pete Ziemak, Miller faced tour owner Tony Robles Sunday. “The Silent Assassin” easily handled Miller, sending him to the one-loss side 9-4. Robles then faced off against San Souci in the hot seat match. “Ginky” took an early lead, but once he reached the hill at 8-5, Robles fought back to make a double-hill affair. However, a kicked-in 3 ball by San Souci gave him the last rack and the match. On the west side, Al Lapena was finally tested by Miller, who overcame the Filipino powerhouse in the hill-hill game. Zion Zvi also pulled through to take out Shaun Wilkie with a close 9-7 win. This set up Miller and Zvi to determine the winner of the one-loss bracket. In this set, Miller dominated from the start. From a 4-1 lead, he ultimately won the match 9-7, sending Zvi home with fourth place. Miller’s rematch with Robles in the semifinals went differently from their first meeting. Robles struggled to make a ball on the break and never seemed to gain momentum, and Miller breezed past him 9-4 to advance to the finals. The final race to 11 saw San Souci and Miller tied at 5-all and then 7-all. Miller added two to his side after a positional error by San Souci and a break and run-out, and then a missed 4 ball by San Souci gave Miller the hill. Miller crushed the break in the final rack, dropping two balls, and then cleared the table for the 11-7 win. On Sunday, eight players turned out for the B-C-D event. Sandy Patarino and Rene Villalobos met in the finals, which ended as a hill-hill tiebreaker that Villalobos closed out to win.
Cintron Comes out on Top Tri-State Tour / Queens, NY by InsidePOOL Staff
Dan Cintron came through a tough 36-player field at the TriState Tour’s August 22 event to wrest first place from Johnny Ortiz in the final match. The 10-ball tournament was hosted by Sandcastle Billiards in Queens, NY, and featured a $750-added purse. Cintron enjoyed an undefeated run to the finals, besting Ortiz for the first time en route to the hot seat match 7-5. There he faced off against Raul Reyes, who had just sent Mike Harrington to the west side with a 6-4 win. It was a tightly contested match, but Cintron ultimately prevailed 9-7, sending Harrington left. In the final four on the one-loss side, Gary Murgia was matched up with Scott Simmonetti but fell 7-3, ending up in seventh place. Tying with him was Diana Rojas, who was eliminated by Steve Thomas 6-5. Simmonetti went on to play a determined Ortiz, who went through him 7-3, while Thomas ousted Harrington 6-4. In the quarterfinals, it was a lopsided affair between Ortiz and Thomas, with Ortiz forging ahead 9-4. His momentum propelled him through the next match as well, defeating Raul Reyes in a hill-hill bout to make it to the finals. There, though, he was stopped short by Cintron, who came out the winner of their double-hill final match.
Regional Roundup Results:
Mitchell Mows Field 1st Mike Miller $1,000 Down Strokers 7th Victor Nau $175 Th Vir 2nd George Souci $750Tour / Palm Joey Kong Tiger BaySan Area Amateur Harbor, FL 3rd Tony Robles $500 9th Dennis Spears $125 4th Zion Zvi $375 Wali Muhammad by B by Lea Andrews 5th Shaun Wilkie $250 Pete Ziemak Al Lapena Sean Morgan Stephanie Mitchell, who had a good showing at the WPBA’s last inaugural Satellite Tour event, had an even better showing at the Insi $400-added Tiger Bay Area Amateur Tour event the following owe weekend on July 18. Balancing her tour director and playing duties but perfectly, Mitchell went undefeated through the field of 20 ladies 19 w who arrived at Palm Harbor, FL’s, Strokers Billiards for the sevfigh enth stop of the tour, which is also sponsored by Sterling Gaming, Stroke-It Wear, and Lucasi Hybrid Cues. Following a 5-2 win over Amy Chen, Mitchell arrived in the hot seat match along with Stacey Lantz, who was coming off a 5-3 win over Samantha Huber. Mitchell, who up to that point had won Mike Robles, everyMiller, match Tony 5-2 except forGeorge one thatSansouci was 5-1, continued the trend, sending Lantz west 5-2. On the one-loss side, the top three leaders in this season’s tour standings were fighting to stay through to the end. Points leader and two-time event winner Michell Monk moved past third-ranked Sabra MacArthur Beahn 6-3 to meet up with a fellow two-time winner, number-two-ranked Melissa Morlan, who’d gotten by Sheilla Coleman 4-2. It was Monk who prevailed, moving on to a 6-1 win over Chen. Meanwhile, Niki Rasmussen backed up a 6-2 win over Barbara Ellis with a shut-out win over Lisa Parsons, who was Sandie Rene Villalobos, Tony herselfPatarino, coming off a very strong 4-1 winRobles over sharpshooter Jeannie Seaver. Rasmussen, though, couldn’t get past Huber, and she landed in fifth with a score of 4-3.
upse out. Virg
Mat Chr mak tage Shu
buck paid solid play spon
On a roll, Huber didn’t let Monk stand in her way, moving grab past her 4-3 to greet Lantz in the one-loss semifinal match, where first she earned her spot in the finals with a 4-1 win. Mitchell, who’d anot played very strongly all day ball long, wasn’t quite up to her New par in the final set,Alex but by tak- Results: Gail Glazebrook, Gonzalez, Tony Robles Stephanie Mitchell $300 whe ing advantage of any unlikely 1st Samantha Huber $225 but ball in hand that came her 2nd Results: 3rd Stacey Lantz $150 way, continued 1st sheDan Cintronher 5-2$680 5th Scott Simonetti $70 grab 4th Michell Monk $100 1-9 2nd Johnny out$370 Mike Harrington trend once more,Ortiz closing 5th 7th AmyGary ChenMurgia $50 $55 3rd Raul Reyes $210 her first win of 2009 in just Rasmussen 4th $120 Niki Diana Rojas one set. Steve Thomas entr Octo nam $60
“More For The Player” Coming To Your Area Soon
www.amateurpoolleague.com October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 51
Regional Roundup Borbeau Dethrones Taylor to Take Qualifier New England Women’s Tour / Johnston, RI by Lea Andrews
Acciavatti Aces Tour Finale
Northeast DeGiosafatto Shoots Down Comet Billiards Field
solid 7-4 win over Maiers, quickly found herself down 5-2 to Duddy, Those who were rooting for Liz Taylor to sweep the New England Dominiak Cues Northeast Amateur 10-Ball Tour / Tri-State Tour / Parsippany, NJ Women’s Tour 2009 season have Stacie Borbeau to thank for their who’d jumped out with three break and runs. After a couple trade-offs, Windsor Locks, CT a familiar face in the winner’s cirwith Rego breaking and Duddy on the hill 6-4, Duddy had already disappointment. Borbeau, by Lea Andrews taken her last shot. A couple early 9 ball combinations got the cle in seasons past, went undefeated through the 23-lady InsidePOOL score to 6-6, and Rego broke and ran the last rack to face fieldby on August Staff 16 to take first in the $850-added fourth stop, DeGiosafatto came through the one-loss side to claim first one in the TriTaylor in the Jr. semifinals. There, Rego managed only a WPBA qualifier held at Corner Pocket in Johnston, RI. James The 2009 season of the Dominiak Cues Northeast AmaState Tour’s second stop of the new season. The $500-added C-D event drew 25 more game than in their last meeting, falling into third 7-4 teur After sending Joan Thole 7-5, July Borbeau 10-Ball Tour concluded withwest its finale 18, withmet Tomup with players and to Comet Billiards Parsippany, NJ. in a rematch in the finals. pitting Taylorin against Borbeau Taylor in thecoming hot seat Coming off The a strong Acciavatti out onmatch. top to take first place. 40-play-7-3 win was player hosted by Pool Table Locks, overer field WPBA Candi Rego, Magic Taylorin Windsor was nonetheless un- C+-ranked TheDeGiosafatto’s modified final would if undefeatearlyrace loss took him end out ofatthe7spotlight, and as the fiMark Kulungian also hosted annual Borbeau first butRyan would extendseemed to 9 the if Taylor ableCT,towhere closeowner it out against Borbeau, who his edged hercueout 7-6. nal foured on the A-side reached emerged, it C+-ranked McCarthy likely winner. show. it first. In a stunning ofhim ability, nev-against His 6-4 reached win over C+-ranked Dave Shlemperisshow placed in the Borbeau hot seat match On the one-loss side, New Yorkers Borana Andoni and Emily Duder gave a chance, to just one Rodrigues. game to Daily Duane Daily, who Taylor was coming off a 6-5holding win over her C-ranked Michael dy posted strong 7-2 victories over Christiethe andtop Lena reAcciavatti steadily made hisTaylor way through halfLavoie, of earnto first place and but paid entry Colorado Classic. was treated another 6-5 match came out ontothethe wrong end this time and moved spectively, to meet up with June Maiers and Janet Tycks. Maiers, who the winners’ side with wins over Mike Wheeler, Josh Lerner, over to the left side of the bracket. hadKevin just ousted Erica then Testa13-year-old 7-4, did the same to Andoni 7-3, while TyBlackstock, junior sensation Kevin Sun cks,tofollowing 7-5 win over On Wendy Snow, half fell to very tight-playing Over on the one-loss side, DeGiosafatto was making his move. A 6-3 win over reach the ahot seat match. the bottom of athe winners’ Duddy next round, putting Thole side7-1. ChrisDuddy Gradercontinued made his her waystreak to thein hotthe seat match accumuC-ranked Antonio Navarro, a 7-4 win against D+-ranked Rick Shellhouse, and a 6-1 in fifth 7-2wins to meet the quarterfinals. just hadwin a over Shlemperis landed him in the quarterfinals against C+-ranked T.J. Smithers, lating over Rego Scott in Winchell, Eric Tang, Rego, Roger who’d Lakotko, and lastly Richard Barrett. The hot seat match went hill-hill, who’d just had some strong wins, himself: 6-3 over Ed Miller (C), 6-3 over Duane with Acciavatti coming out on top to take a seat in the finals. Toney (C+), and 6-2 over Rodrigues. The two went back and forth, with DeGiosafatto Jeong Storms JPNEWT Field coming out on top 6-5 to face Dailey in the semifinals. J. Pechauer Women’s Tour several / Deptford, On theNorthEast one-loss side there were closeNJ battles. The bytop Leahalf Andrews saw Ryan Bijur battling his way through after an early It was Dailey who had earlier sent DeGiosafatto west 6-4, and in this match, loss, taking down wins in five matches until he ran into Roger moving on to the finals with a convincing 6-3 win. The Nothing, not even an early-round loss, could stop Bora Jeong onDeGiosafatto got his revenge, Stacie Borbeau Lakotko. Bijur came out on top and then quickly got called to her way to the finals of the August 22-23 stop of the J. Pechauer North-modified final set featured one player coming straight out of a match and one player his next match with Shen. Bijur’s day ended in seventh place of a chair, as McCarthy had had to wait a couple of hours for an opponent East Women’s Tour. The $1,500-added event, a WPBA qualifier for thecoming out Results: as Shen pulled this one out to move on to Sun. With steady to come through. played well in the finals, not as well as the way he’d 1st McCarthy Stacie Borbeau $500but + qual. Colorado Classic, drew 24 ladies to Hot Shots in Deptford, shot-making and brilliant safeties Sun keptBilliards this match in con- NJ.played getting there, and DeGiosafatto, taking advantage of the rolls coming his way, 2nd Liz Taylor $350 Shen’s fifth Pam place. trol Onand theended winners’ sideday finalinfour, Cimarelli, who is second onlyclosed out3rd the win 8-6. Candi Rego $250 to My-Hanh Lac in tour points, took down WPBA player Candi Rego 4th Emily Duddy $150 TheKim bottom halfinofthe thehot one-loss side saw Drewhaving Smith just roll-edged 7-4 to meet Smith seat match. Smith, 5th Joan Thole $75 Results: alongplayer with Megan seven wins in 7-6, a row after a first-round loss to outing WPBA Smith managed only two games against June Maiers 1st James DeGiosafatto Jr. $500 meet upwho withthen Sun.waited Both in players brilliantly, but in Smith 7th Borana Andoni $50 Cimarelli, the hotplayed seat for an opponent the finals.2nd Ryan McCarthy $230 was able to send Sun home in fourth place. Waiting for Smith Janet Tycks Duane Dailey $150 in On the one-loss side, fallen to Veronique the semifinal match wasJeong, Grader.who’d Another hill-hill battle en- Me-3rd T.J. Smithers $100 nard 7-1between in the Grader secondand round, runtop for the4th sued Smith,had withbeen Smithmaking comingher out on Michael Rodrigues $55 for a After clean sweep of athe7-1 one-loss side.Cheryl Pritchard, Jeong met5th finals. posting win over Shlemperis Dave tour director Linda Shea, who was coming off a strong 7-3 vic- Results: TheEmily finalsDuddy. between Meanwhile, Acciavatti and Smith were a single tory over 2009 14-and-under girls Ju- 1st Bora Jeong $600 + qual. 5th Candi Rego $130 to 5. Both players had beenMiller playing strong all Yomalin day, and Feliz 2nd Pam Cimarelli niorrace Nationals champion Briana eased past Megan Smith $450 both carried it into the gotten finals. The match stayed close until 7th Veronique Menard $85 $300 7-2they to meet Menard, who’d by Borana Andoni 7-3. Allow- 3rd Kim Smith couple small from Miller Smith opened Accia Linda Shea $200 ingaMenard only errors one game, went onthetodoor face for Rego as Jeong 4th Briana Miller vattiMegan to takeSmith. advantage the match. Acciavatti wentand onJeong faced Bothlate prosinlanded in fifth and Miller to win 5-3 in the finals and takes home the title of tour finale met in the quarterfinals, having won 7-4 and 7-1, respectively. champion. Jeong, who last won a JPNEWT event more than two years agoResults: but was making her first appearance this season, was headed for1st familiar Tom territory as she put$240 Miller in fourth 7-4 to meet Kim Acciavatti + cue Smith, whom she blew past 7-2 to meet 2nd Drew Smith $140 + cue Cimarelli in the finals. 3rd Chris Grader $100 reached 7 first to push the race to In the modified final race, Jeong 4th Kevin Sun $70 9, and she got to the hill with a comfortable lead. Cimarelli took rack 5th Shen $45 14 to put the score at 8-6, and she looked to be closing the gap further Richard Barrett when she dropped the 9 on the break in the next. When the cue ball 7th Roger Latotko $25 fell, too, theKevin 9 wasBlackstock spotted and Jeong came to the table with ball in hand but no shot on the 1 ball. In a show of offensive savvy, she set up a long 1-9 combination, but she wasn’t going to rely entirely on that 9 ball to fall, and she tucked the cue ball behind another ball just in case. There was no need, though, as the 9 fell cleanly for first-place money and a ticket to the Colorado Classic. 52 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Round one matches were shortly underway when, out of the blue, the ﬁre alarm bells went off. Luckily the alarm stopped and the play-
Regional Roundup ers continued their games. On the A-side semiﬁnal bracket, Naomi Williams went up against Bonnie Plowman, sending her packing 7-1. Northeast The Control B-side bracket ﬁlled withTour talented ladies and matches to be Hopkins watched. Grace Nakamura over Belanger 7-4, and Bryant Toney Takes on was Tri-State Brings It towon Inaugural Event in NY a hill-hill match. Bryant then faced off against Nakamura. this match, Bryant was/ on ﬁreYork and City, defeated Tri-Stateousted Tour /Menard Queens, TeamInDMIRO 10-Ball Tour New NY Nakamura 7-5. With this outcome, the WPBA spot automatically went to Williams, as she was the last remaining player eligible for the WPBA spot. by InsidePOOL Staff by Jerry Tarantola
However, with that decided and still two matches left, Bryant then faced off with Plowman. Bryant won in a dominating fashion, posting a score 7-1. At the first stop of the Tiger Products and Team DMIRO NaDuane Toney took hold of the reins at the Tri-State Tour’s
August 15 stop, wresting the final match from Mike Panzarella tionwide 10-Ball Tour, presented by Allen Hopkins, a tough group In the true double-elimination ﬁnals, Bryant needed to defeat Williams twice. Bryant bested Williams in the ﬁrst set 7-5, and in the next to earn first place. This B-D handicapped 9-ball event was hosted of pros and amateur from around the area as well as other parts of set, she took a commanding 5-1 lead. However, Williams did not give up and fought for every shot, making combination after combination by Master Billiards in Queens, NY, and attracted a 30-player field. the world turned out to play August 29-30 at host room Eastside Bilon the 9 ball and knotting the score up 6-6. Bryant was running out, but she missed a slight cut of the 8 ball into the side pocket. With a liards in New York City, NY. Top players who attended the event inscore of 7-6, Williams won the Donrun Broos Custom the Cue tournament. Paciﬁc Coast Qualiﬁer. Toney enjoyed an undefeated through cluded Mike Davis, “Alaska” Sean Morgan, Mike Yednak, Jonni Reaching the winners’ side final four, he sent Chris Laz to the oneFulcher, Zion Zvi, and Zaid Thweib, with 24 players total, but it loss side with a strong 7-5 win to reach the hot seat match. Meeting was Hopkins who walked away with the lion’s share and the title. him there was Andrew Kane, who had just notched a hill-hill Team DMIRO, which stands for “Don’t Miss … I’ll Run Out” will feawin over Kris Karp 7-6. In another close match, Toney triture over 20 stops across the country and culminate in a final event to be held umphed 7-6 to take the hot seat and await a finals opponent. at the Super Billiards Expo in March 2010. With the preliminary round of the event completed, the four amateurs to move on were Mike Yednak, Ron The west side was whittling down to its top competitors as well. Dave Shlemperis went up against TJ Smithers but was turned aside Gabia, house player Basdeo “Sean” Sookhai, and Andrew Kane. Along with them, the four pros to advance were Davis, Morgan, Thweib, and 6-3, while Tony Eglasias was sent packing by Mike Panzarella 7-4. Hopkins. The final eight were re-drawn into a double-elimination bracket. Smithers advanced to meet Karp, who ousted him 7-4, and Panzarella continued his winning streak by eliminating Laz in a hill-hill nail-biter. In the final eight, Yednak defeated Sookhai and then Morgan 7-0 to In the quarterfinals, a determined Panzarella sent Karp home in fourth take the hot seat. In the preliminary pro bracket, Hopkins was a domiplace with another hill-hill victory, and then Panzarella went on to best nant force in his first two matches, with 7-5 wins over Davis and ThKane in the semifinals in yet another 7-6 win to advance to the finals. weib. However, Morgan knocked the Hall of Famer into the one-loss In the modified race to 7, Panzarella needed to reach 7 to extend the side in the final eight by a score of 7-4. Hopkins went on to play a nearly flawless set against Thweib to win 7-0, defeat Davis 7-5, and knock race to 9. With Toney ranked a C+ and Panzarella a B+, Toney started with Naomi Williams out Morgan by a score of 7-0 to land in the hot seat against Yednak. a two-game advantage. Panzarella drew first blood, but Toney asserted The final match was one race to 9 between Yednak and Hopkins. The himself and reached the hill in short order 6-1. However, Panzarella regained control of the table and brought the score to hill-hill, making this score was even in the first half of the match, where it was tied at 4-all. Yednak his fourth double-hill bout in four rounds. Nevertheless, it was Toney dominated the next rack, but the 9 ball skidded and the lead went to Hopwho broke and ran out the final rack, earning the title and top honors. kins. From there, Yednak could not seem to get back into the groove. Hopkins took full advantage of this and bore down to win the match 9-4.
1st Duane Toney $600 2nd Mike Panzarella 3rd Andrew Kane 4th Kris Karp 5th Chris Laz TJ Smithers
$300 $170 $100 $60
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 7th
Allen Hopkins Mike Yednak Sean Morgan Mike Davis $342 Zaid Thweib Baseo Sookhai Ron Gabia Andrew Kane
$1,198 $856 $513 $171 $85
UPCOMING NORTHEAST TOURNAMENTS 888-245-7665 10/3 10/4 10/10 62 10/10 10/10-11 10/11 10/11 10/17 10/17 10/24 10/24 10/24-25 10/24-25 10/31 11/1
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$750 $1,000 $500 $500 $1,000 Prizes $1,000 $1,000 $500 Prizes $500 $1,000 $600 $750 $1,000
B-D Open Ladies A-D Open Amateurs Open Open C-D Amateurs B-D Open Amateurs B-D Open
October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 53
Groundhog’s Day in Duluth
Ussery Upstages Monday at Fast Eddie’s Billiards
Great Southern Billiard Tour / Duluth, GA by Lea Andrews Horace “Groundhog” Goodwin overshadowed each opponent that crossed his path in the August 8-9 Great Southern Billiard Tour stop, taking home first place and the lion’s share of the prize money. The $1,500-addedA/B event drew 56 players to The Pool Room in Duluth, GA. Having sent Sean Davis left 9-4, Goodwin arrived in the hot seat match to meet David Rice, who was coming off a 9-3 win over Matt Reed. Goodwin’s solid 9-6 victory sent Rice west to try to earn a rematch. On the one-loss side, while Robert Frost was cutting down Arlo Walsman 9-4 and Chris Davis 9-2 before ultimately falling to Davis 9-4, Benny Conway, Jr. was making his way steadily through the bracket, notching up three 11-5 wins in a row over Billy Tyler, Aaron Frady, and Reed meet up with Davis in the quarterfinals. Conway’s win there was even stronger and he moved into the semifinals 11-4. That’s where Conway’s hot streak ended, though, as Rice held him to eight games, putting himself back up against Goodwin in the finals. Goodwin was the first to hit the string in the true double-elimination finals, though Rice wasn’t far behind. The two battled back and forth, knotting up at 3 and 5 games apiece before Goodwin pulled ahead 6-5 and, with a break and run, 7-5. Pushing for the second set, Rice managed to get the match to hill-hill, but he couldn’t close it out. After coming out on top of a safety battle in the final rack, it was Goodwin who sunk the final 9.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Horace Goodwin David Rice Benny Conway, Jr. Sean Davis Matt Reed Robert Frost
$1,000 $500 $350 $200 $120
7th Aaron Frady $60 Chris Zayas 9th Billy Tyler Wes Davis Arlo Walsman Jesse Middlebrook
Jacoby Custom Cues Carolina Tour / Goldsboro, NC by Lea Andrews Although B.J. Ussery suffered a loss on the way to the finals of the Jacoby Custom Cues Carolina Tour stop August 1-2, he clinched the match that counts. Ussery was among the field of 30 who gathered for the $1,000-added event at Fast Eddie’s Billiards in Goldsboro, NC. Ussery arrived unscathed into the hot seat match, having sent Jeff Abernathy west 7-3. His opponent, Sam Monday, had also notched up a 7-3 win, though his was over Earl Strickland. Ussery, like Strickland, managed just three games against Monday, and he moved west for some extra warm-up time before the finals. Over on the one-loss side, Cary Dunn was making his way through with strong wins, taking down Ronnie Wiseman 7-4 and Eddie Little 7-5 before coming upon Strickland. The hill-hill battle ended with Dunn on top, planting Strickland in fifth along with Delton Howard, who had fallen to Abernathy 7-5. Against Abernathy, Dunn got into another hill-hill tug-of-war, but he came out on the wrong end this time, and Abernathy went on to meet Ussery in the semifinals. Ussery echoed his earlier 7-3 win over Abernathy with another one, putting Abernathy in third and himself into the finals. Once in the single race-to-9 final set, Ussery got out to a 2-0 lead, but Monday rebounded to take the lead at 3-2 and 4-3. The two traded games to get to 4-4 and 6-6, but that’s when Ussery took over, marking up three straight to take first with a 9-6 win. Coming out on top of the early bird tournament on Friday night was Cary Dunn, who won 7-3 over Steven Page in the finals. Dunn earned $100 for his win, while Page took home $60 and Jeff Abernathy took $20 for third. On Sunday, Heather Thompson took first in the ladies’ division, while Justin Ward won in the juniors’ division. Russell Sasser took first in the second chance tournament with a 7-1 win over Justin Ward, earning $70, while Ward earned $30. One lucky spectator, Jennifer Hard, was also a winner, taking home from a raffle a limited-edition Jacoby Cue worth $850.
1st BJ Ussery 2nd Sam Monday 3rd Jeff Abernathy 4th Cary Dunn 5th Earl Strickland Delton Howard 7th Eddie Little Dustin Wiley
Fisher Brings Doom to Carolina Billiards Tour Opener Carolina Billiards Tour / Monroe, NC by Lea Andrews
Despite a brief setback which came courtesy of Kelly Fisher, “The Duchess of Doom” Allison Fisher came back in the finals to earn her revenge and become the first winner on the Carolina Billiards Tour, a WPBA-sanctioned regional tour founded by Kristi Carter and WPBA player Kim Shaw. Held on August 8-9, the $1,900-added event, which was a qualifier for the WPBA Colorado Classic, drew 28 players from as far as Canada to Burrkats Billiards and Grill in Monroe, NC. Though she was challenged early by fellow pro Gerda Hofstatter, A. Fisher moved otherwise easily into the winners’ side final four, where she knocked aside Dana Aft 9-2 to advance to the hot seat match against K. Fisher, who’d just won 9-1 over Lara Rossignol. The two Fishers had met twice in back-to-back matches at the WPBA U.S. Open, with A. Fisher coming out on top both times, but K. Fisher had something different in store this time around, allowing her opponent to get to the hill but no further. 54 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
$1,000 $500 $325 $225 $150 $75
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 7th
Allison Fisher Kelly Fisher Gerda Hofstatter Val Finnie Dana Aft Lara Rossignol Kim Shaw Katie Cowan
$705 $485 $390 $265 $170 + qual. $170 $120
On the one-loss side, tournament director Shaw got past Veronique Menard 9-3 to meet up with Hofstatter, who’d just shut out Cheryl Pritchard. Meanwhile, Katie Cowan edged out Buffy Jolie 7-5 to meet Val Finnie, who was coming off a strong 7-2 win over Holly Sholes. Both Shaw and Cowan got their last match scores reversed on them, as they dropped into seventh 9-3 and 7-5, respectively. Hofstatter continued her top-heavy trend by ousting Aft 9-3, while Finnie did the same to Rossignol 7-3, leaving the question of the qualifier spot, which would go to the highest-finishing amateur, still unanswered. The resolution came in the form of a single race between Aft and Rossignol, with Aft claiming her spot with a hill-hill victory. Still on a hot streak, Hofstatter blew past Finnie 9-2 in the quarter finals to meet up with Fisher in the semifinals, but “The Duchess of Doom” brought her A-game, refusing to allow Hofstatter to notch up even a single rack. It was time, then, for the Fishers to meet yet again, this time with first place on the line. In true world-class style, A. Fisher put the heat on “Kwikfire,” earning the win by holding her to 6 games in the race to 9. But both ladies were treated to a little added bonus in the form of a $500 anonymous tournament pot donation, which was split 60/40 between first and second places.
Nevel and Hooks Take Viking Event
Double J is Double Trouble for Vita
Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour / Atlanta, GA by InsidePOOL Staff
White Diamond Billiards Annual Summer 9-Ball Extravaganza / Lafayette, LA by Lea Andrews
Larry “The Truth” Nevel took no prisoners the weekend of August 29-30 at the Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour’s event, going unchallenged through to win. The double-feature event was hosted by Mr. Cues II in Atlanta, GA, and drew in 86 players competing for the $6,055 in prize money.
In the amateur division, Jeff Hooks began his journey to first place at the bottom of the bracket and worked his way through to the finals. On his trek he bested Clay Fisher 9-6, Felipe Flores 9-2, Clint Nichols 9-2, Sean Davis 9-8, Eddie Little 9-8, and Billy Holmes 9-7 in the hot seat match. In the finals Hooks faced off against Holmes again, defeating him 9-1 in the first and only set.
Nevel didn’t have an easy beginning to his domination of the open division, starting off with a crowd-pleasing match against Shawn “Big Bubba” Putnam. After sending Putnam west, he bested Mike Gulyassy 7-2, Jeff Tabet 7-1, Jim Jennings 7-5, Shane Wade 7-1, and then Bruce Berrong in the final match 7-1.
Open Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Larry Nevel $895 Bruce Berrong Shane Wade $350 Clint McCullough Jim Jennings Jeff Tabet
Amateur Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Jeff Hooks Billy Holmes Horace Godwin Henry Cofer Bryant Walker Eddie Little
$525 $200 $100
$1,200 $850 $565 $350 $210
Billy Tyler Sean Davis Jeff Tabet Oscar Ceron Andrew Stewart Laura Rossingnol
On the weekend of August 8-9, the bar box action was at White Diamond Billiards, where Jeremy “Double J” Jones zipped through a 128-man field to clinch first. The much-anticipated $1,000-added White Diamond Billiards Annual Summer 9-Ball Extravaganza, run by husband and wife team Chris Miller and Ashley Kline, drew the players and the spectators to Lafayette, LA. Following a win over crowd favorite Jesse Bowman, Jones faced in the winners’ side final four Gary Abood, who’d just gotten past Bobby Pickle. Jones brushed Abood aside to advance to the hot seat match, where he met Nick Vita, who was coming off wins over John Lopez and Bobby Johnson. Vita had notched his final victory on the winners’ side, though, and he moved to the left side of the bracket with a mission to get back to Jones.
In a field such as this one, relatively early exits are bound to happen as familiar names run into each other on the one-loss side. Cliff Joyner, having just ousted Daniel “Lil D” McKeeney, was ousted himself by Lopez, who’d already knocked out Jamie Farrell. Lopez went on to put Gary Abood in fifth before coming upon Chuck Ralston, who’d gone through Bowman, Pickle, and Johnson. Ralston continued his winning ways against Lopez in the quarterfinals but came up short against Vita in the semis, falling into third while Vita moved on to seek revenge on Jones in the finals.
At first, it seemed Jones would simply run away with the match, getting off to a quick 3-0 start. The alternate-break format gave Vita the opportunity he needed in the fourth rack, though, as he broke open the rack and ended it quickly with a 2-9 combination. That combination fueled a streak, as Vita took control to get the match to 6-3. In each rack that followed, the ball that could push the second set sat on the table, but in each rack, it was Jones who sunk it. With the score tied at 6, Jones broke, making the 1 ball but finding himself without a shot on the 2. A well-played safety gave him ball-in-hand, but a tricky 5 ball left him a tough on the 6. When Jones missed it, Vita was left hooked, with a kicksafe his only option. Vita made a good hit, though he left a makeable shot for Jones. With the cue ball nearly frozen to the 6 near the foot rail, Jones jacked up, needing a lot of power to force the 6 to the foot corner pocket. Combining skill with luck, Jones sent the 6 neatly in its intended pocket, while the cue ball flew towards the head of the table, colliding with the 9 and sending it into the head corner pocket for the win.
Tschudi Eludes the Sniper
J. Pechauer Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour / Spring Hill, FL by Lea Andrews Although Tony “The Sniper” Crosby took down just about everyone in his path during the season finale of the$2,000-added J. Pechauer Southeast Open 9-Ball Tour, one man eluded him not once, but twice: international player Marco Tschudi. Rocky McElroy, owner of Capone’s Billiards in Spring Hill, FL, hosted Tschudi, Crosby, and the 33 other players who were vying for the win August 1-2. Crosby and Tschudi first met each other in the winners’ side final four, and Tschudi moved on 9-7 to the hot seat match to meet Jerry Calderon, who was coming off his own 9-7 win over Steve Moore. With yet another 9-7 win, Tschudi emerged the winner of the A-side. Over on the B-side, Corey Deuel, who’d just won over Mike Davis, met up with Rodney Morris, who’d gotten past James Roberts. Deuel moved on 9-7 to welcome Moore over from the winners’ side. Moore’s stay was brief, though, as Deuel notched up an-
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Jeremy Jones Nick Vita Chuck Ralston John Lopez Bobby Johnson Gary Abood
$2,142 $1,040 $796 $551 $367
Bobby Pickle Cliff Joyner Jesse Bowman Daniel McKeeney Jamie Farrell James Davis, Jr.
other 9-7 win to land in the quarterfinals against Crosby, who’d just put Donnie Mills in fifth with a score of 9-5. Although Deuel reached the hill against Crosby, “The Prince of Pool” didn’t get crowned this time around, instead getting gunned down 9-8. Next up for Crosby was Calderon, whom he held to six games to earn the rematch with Tschudi. In the finals, a single race to 11, it was Tschudi who started off strong, getting up 7-3 only to have Crosby bounce back to tie it at 7. The two then traded off, with Tschudi leading 8-7 and 9-8, but Crosby managed to notch an extra game to reach the hill first, 10-9. Tschudi, though, returned the two-game favor with his own, clinching the win 11-10.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
Marco Tschudi Tony Crosby Jerry Calderon Corey Deuel
$1,400 $1,100 $700 $520
Steve Moore Donnie Mills Rodney Morris Richie Richeson
October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 55
Monk Massacres Inaugural Flamingo Billiards Field Flamingo Billiards Tour / Fort Pierce, FL by Lea Andrews
It was a day of firsts August 15 in Fort Pierce, FL, as Michell Monk scored her first win on a WPBA regional tour event, which happened to be the inaugural Flamingo Billiards Tour stop. Monk joined 21 other ladies at Ultimate Billiards for the $500-added event, a qualifier for WPBA’s Colorado Classic. Monk started the day off strong with wins over Crystal McCormick 7-3, tour director Mimi McAndrews 7-1, and Mary Pendleton-Brown 7-6 to secure her spot in the redraw for the final 8 on the winners’ side, where the format went to single elimination. Leslee Davis-Blaikie also arrived undefeated having sent Stephanie Mitchell west 7-3, as did Stacy Lantz with her 7-4 win over Tracy McCreary, and Jeannie Seaver with her 7-5 victory over Amy Poulter.
On the left side of the bracket, the once-fallen ladies were fighting to make it into the redraw, where everyone would be equal. Niki Rasmussen earned her place by holding Pendleton-Brown to four games, while Kelly Coyle and Helene Caukin held Poulter and McCreary to three, respectively. The final spot went to Mitchell after she blew past Diana Minor 7-1.
The redraw resulted in two tighter matches and two blow-outs, as Mitchell ousted Rasmussen 7-5 and Coyle fell hill-hill to DavisBlaikie, while Caukin allowed Seaver only one game and Monk dealt Lantz her only loss in the form of a shut-out. The final four ladies all wanted that spot in the finals, and they showed it by pushing hard in both semifinal matches, with Mitchell coming up short 7-5 against Caukin, and Davis-Blaikie one game shy against Monk 7-6.
In the finals, Caukin notched up the first game, but Monk came back with five in a row to make it 5-1. The stage was set to go 6-1, but Monk’s jawed 7 ball left Caukin out and put the score at 5-2, and a quick 9 on the break made it 5-3. Rack 9 started off as a safety battle, which Caukin ended with a fantastic kick on the 2 ball. She was left with a tough cut on the 3 ball, and though she was up to the challenge, the next ball didn’t drop for her, and Monk ran out to get on the hill. Her stay there was short, as Caukin missed a tough shot on the 3 ball in the final rack, leaving on the table a 3-9 combination, which Monk knocked in to earn first place money, the qualifier spot, and a Sniper jump/break cue provided by tour sponsor Tony “The Sniper” Crosby.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd
Michell Monk $450 + qualifier Helene Caukin $300 Stephanie Mitchell $200 Leslee Davis-Blaikie
Stacy Lantz $110 Kelly Coyle Jeannie Seaver Niki Rasmussen
Michell Monk, Helene Caukin, Bill Mallen, Gary Gilsinan 56 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Déjà Vu for Chamberlain at Diamond Billiards Great Southern Billiard Tour / Midlothian, VA by Lea Andrews
When the Great Southern Billiard Tour last came through Midlothian, VA, Bobby Chamberlain took first in two sets of the finals, finishing up after sunrise, and when the tour returned to Diamond Billiards August 15-16, Chamberlain took it in two again. Chamberlain was among the field of 56 who arrived for the $1,500-added A-B amateur event.
Chamberlain, having suffered an early loss to James Lucy, was making his way through the one-loss side while the final four on the winners’ side emerged. AA-ranked David Ally shut out B-ranked Tony Williams to earn his spot in the hot seat match against B-ranked Chuck Cuneo, who’d held back AA-ranked Max Schlothauer 7-5. On the left side of the bracket, Chamberlain made his way through Ryan Bryant 9-4 and Chris Adams 9-3 to welcome Schlothauer from the A-side, while Mitch Tranham eased past John Lee 9-3 and Reggie Jackson 9-2 to greet Williams. In the weighted format, Chamberlain moved forward 9-9, while A-ranked Tranham fell hill-hill 7-8 to Williams. Williams’ quarterfinal match against Chamberlain also went hill-hill, though he was on the wrong end of it, and Chamberlain advanced to the semifinals 9-6. Cuneo, who’d fallen 11-4 to Ally in the hot seat match, couldn’t mark up as many games against Chamberlain, landing in third 9-2.
Both men were fatigued when the finals began well after midnight, Ally having come off a long wait and Chamberlain coming off a long string of matches. The fatigue, coupled with careful play on a double-shimmed table, drew out the first set, which Chamberlain claimed 9-6. With one loss under each of their belts, the win would go to whoever took the second set, but Chamberlain wouldn’t let Ally come close to his goal of 11 games. Up 8-4, Chamberlain broke the rack wide open, spreading the balls perfectly for a runout. Seeing Chamberlain’s perfect position on the 9 after pocketing the 8 in the side, Ally conceded, but Chamberlain’s victory was bittersweet. Amidst a round of applause, Chamberlain dedicated his win to his mother-in-law, Betty, who’d died just a few days before.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Bobby Chamberlain David Ally $500 Chuck Cuneo Tony Williams Mitch Tranham Max Schlothauer
$1,000 $250 $150 $100
Reggie Jackson $75 Chris Adams Anthony D’Amico $50 John Lee Jimmy Tyson Ryan Bryant
SEMINOLE PRO TOUR 2009 SCHEDULE APRIL 3-5 MR. CUES II BILLIARDS ATLANTA, GA • 770.454.7665 $3,000 ADDED
JULY 17-19 FAST EDDIE’S BILLIARDS
STEVE MIZERAK CHAMPIONSHIP
GOLDSBORO, NC • 919.759.0071 $6,500 ADDED
APRIL 24-26 HAMMER HEADS BILLIARDS
AUGUST 14-16 DIAMOND BILLIARDS
HOLLYWOOD, FL $40,000 ADDED
MAY 23-25** CAPONE’S BILLIARDS
SEPTEMBER 12-13* RAXX POOL ROOM
JUNE 19-21 BANKSHOT BILLIARDS
OCTOBER 9-11 STROKERS BILLIARDS
HOLIDAY, FL • 727.939.9494 $6,000 ADDED
SPRING HILL, FL • 352.688.9965 $6,000 ADDED
JACKSONVILLE, FL • 904.998.2100 $6,000 ADDED
CAPE CORAL, FL • 239.573.7665 $6,000 ADDED
SEMINOLE HARD ROCK HOTEL & CASINO
WEST HEMPSTEAD, NY • 516.538.9896 $6,500 ADDED SEMINOLE SPORTS MANAGEMENT
PALM HARBOR, FL • 727.786.6683 $6,000 ADDED
*September event will follow Predator 9-Ball Tour Rules and begin on Saturday **May event played Saturday-Monday. All others will begin on Friday (time varies)
DOUBLE ELIMINATION | RACE TO 7 | FINALS RACE TO 9 | 10-BALL TEXAS EXPRESS Winner breaks | Rack your own | Collared shirt required No jeans, shorts, sandals, hats, white sneakers | No smoking in playing areas
For more info contact: Kevin Pickard | 954.985.5701 ext. 10613 | KevinPickard@semtribe.com
Shearer Brings His A-Game to GSBT Finale
Strickland Strikes Jacoby Tour Again
Great Southern Billiard Tour / LaGrange, GA by Lea Andrews
Jacoby Custom Cues Carolina Tour / Goldsboro, NC by Lea Andrews
Brad Shearer, who has cashed in more than a couple Great Southern Billiard Tour events this season and placed as high as second, chose the season finale to make his biggest splash yet. The scene of his victory was Chalk It Up Billiards in La Grange, GA, where 74 players gathered August 28-30 to grab their share of the $6,500-guaranteed purse.
B-ranked Shearer ran past A-ranked Adam Pendley 7-2 to reach the hot seat match, where he met AA-ranked Benny Conway, who was coming off a 10-6 win over Steve Wiggins. Conway, himself no stranger to the GSBT cash, fell 7-7 to Shearer in the weighted race.
On the one-loss side, Justin Ledford ousted Mitch Yarborough 9-3 only to fall 9-2 to Daniel “Lil’ D” McKinney. McKinney then faced Arlo Walsman, who’d eased by Mike Laney 10-4 and Nick Vita 10-6, but Walsman managed only six games against McKinney, who dropped him in seventh. Meanwhile, Denny Singletary notched up a 7-5 win over Danny Smith but fell 10-4 to John Macias. Macias went on to Stoney Stone, who’s just blown through Ed Pope 10-3. Against Macias, though, Stone couldn’t quite get there, landing in seventh 10-9 while Macias greeted Wiggins from the A-side. After brushing past Wiggins 10-5, Macias met up in the quarterfinals with Pendley, who’d just taken down McKinney 9-6. Macias, who needed one more game than Pendley, couldn’t mark it up, finishing in fourth 9-9. The semis, though, were a different story for Pendley, who found himself down 8-0 to Conway before getting on the board. But once he got there, he couldn’t get anywhere else, and Conway moved back over to Shearer 10-1.
In the true double-elimination finals, Shearer, who has the rank of a B-player but the natural talent of an A, started off a little shaky against fast and sharp-shooting Conway, who got up 2-1 after Shearer missed a 7 ball and 3-1 after a 9 on the break. In the alternate-break format, Shearer made it 3-2 with a break and run, but Conway returned it with a four-game streak that was nearly five until he got out of line on the 9 in the tenth rack. Shearer took that rack to make it 7-3, but it was his last that set, as Conway took three straight to push the second set 10-3. In the second set, Conway took advantage of a few of Shearer’s errors to jump out 3-0, but when he missed a 3-9 combo in the fourth rack, it was Shearer’s turn to take advantage, and he got on the board with a 5-9 combination. The next game went to Conway, but after Conway’s scratch on the break in the game after, Shearer gathered himself and ran to a 7-9 combo. After breaking open the next rack, Shearer carefully and deliberately cleared the balls to make it 4-3, and though Conway took the next one after Shearer left a safety open and reaped the benefits of Shearer’s dry break in the rack after, Shearer had his eyes on the goal and didn’t let up. He took two games in a row with early combinations, then tied it at 6 after nothing fell for Conway on the break in rack 12. And that dry break was Conway’s last shot at the table, as Shearer earned his first GSBT win with a break and run.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 7th
Brad Shearer $2,300 Benny Conway $1,200 Adam Pendley $750 John Macias $500 Daniel McKinney $300 Steve Wiggins Arlo Walsman $175 Stoney Stone
9th Justin Ledford Nick Vita Denny Singletary Ed Pope 13th Mitch Yarborough Mike Laney Danny Smith Adam Towery
Earl Strickland, who swept the June 13-14 Jacoby Custom Cues Carolina Tour stop, struck again at the August 22-23 event, going undefeated to take first place. The $1,000-added stop drew 24 competitors to Fast Eddie’s Billiards in Goldsboro, NC.
Following a 7-4 win over Cary Dunn, Strickland met in the hot seat match the last stop’s winner, B.J. Ussery, who’d just sent Eddie Little west 7-5. Holding Ussery to two games, Strickland emerged as the A-side winner while the B-side battled it out.
After falling to Ussery 7-1 in the second round, Tony Morrison backed up strong wins over Jeff Abernathy 7-4 and Sam Monday 7-6, with a 7-3 win over tour bigwig Keith Bennett, who’d been sent left by Strickland 7-3. Ultimately, Morrison came up short 7-6 against Chip Klein, who dropped into fifth courtesy of Little 7-5. Meanwhile, John Hernandez eased past Bernie Kirby 7-2 and Brent Hensley 7-5 only to fall 7-2 to Dunn, who met up with Little in the quarterfinals. With a 7-3 victory over Dunn, Little moved on to Ussery, whom he edged out 7-6 to face Strickland in the finals.
Little started off on the right foot in the single race-to-9 final set by marking up the first game, but Strickland rebounded from the deficit with a 6-game streak. With the score tied at 1 apiece, he broke and ran to go up 2-1, then took advantage of Little’s missed 5 ball to go up 3-1. Finding himself snookered after the break in rack 5, Strickland chose to kick safe rather than push out, and though Little made contact, Strickland ran out to make it 4-1, then took the next two racks to lead 6-1. A dry break in rack 8, though, gave Little an opening, and he quickly made it 6-4. Little’s scratch in rack 11 put the set back in Strickland’s hands, as he ran that rack out and got out of Little’s safety in the next rack with a two-rail kick safe to get ball in hand and reach the hill. In the final game, Strickland played safe on the 4 ball, and though Little tried a kick safe, it wasn’t enough to keep Strickland from victory, and he ran out for a strong 9-4 win. On Friday night, there was an 11-entrant tournament in which Ussery took $130 for his 7-4 win over Cary Dunn in the finals. Dunn earned $60 for second, while Younger Chapman received $30 for third. On Sunday, Casey Bradshaw and Jerry Jones Jr. took first in the ladies’ division and the juniors’ division, respectively. In the seven-entrant second-chance tournament, Brent Hensley took first place and $90 for his 7-4 win in the finals over Bernie Kirby, who earned $50. This stop’s raffle earned Eric Fair a new Jacoby Cue.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Earl Strickland Eddie Little $500 B.J. Ussery Cary Dunn John Hernandez Chip Klein
Earl Strickland 58 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
$1,000 $300 $200 $100
UPCOMING SOUTHEAST TOURNAMENTS 10/3-4
10/3-4 10/3-4 10/4 10/9-11 10/10-11 10/17-18 10/18 10/18-24
Jacoby Cues Carolina Tour
Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Great Southern Billiard Tour Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour Seminole Pro Tour Great Southern Billiard Tour Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships
10/24-25 Great Southern Billiard Tour 10/31-11/1 Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour 11/1 Viking Cue Amateur 9-Ball Tour
Regional Roundup919-759-0071 Goldsboro, NC
Fast Eddie’s Sports Bar
Paradise Billiards Club Charlotte, NC 704-900-7525 $1,500 Amateurs/Advanced The Pool Room Duluth, GA 770-418-9086 $1,500 Amateurs Compton Chips Away at the Midwest Competition Paradise Billiards Club Charlotte, NC 704-900-7525 $500 Amateurs Midwest 9-Ball Tour / Olathe, KS Strokers Billiards Palm Harbor, FL 727-786-6683 $6,000 Open by Lea Andrews Stix Bar and Grill Villa Rica, GA 770-456-1616 $1,500 Amateurs Blue Fox Billiards Winchester, VA 540-665-2114 $2,000 Open Out of the full field of the 128 players who gathered July 17-19 for the Midwest 9-Ball Tour s Blue Fox Billiards Winchester, VA 540-665-2114 $1,000 Amateurs ers Billiards in Olathe, KS, only one man, Chip Compton, made it through unscathed. The $4,000 Chesapeake Conference Center Chesapeake, VA was 757-499-8900 event, run by Evelyn and Danny Dysart, run alongside a $100,000 $1,000-addedOpen one-pocket event, as we
event. The Pool Room Duluth, GA 770-418-9086 $1,500 Amateurs Diamond Billiards Compton’s 9-4 win Midlothian, VA 804-794-8787 $2,000 Open over Nick Hickerson landed him in the final four on the winners’ side, wher by Dustin Gunia, whoMidlothian, was coming off win over Steve Rector. Amateurs With a 9-5 win over John Diamond Billiards VAof a hill-hill 804-794-8787 $1,000
Regional Roundup Thweib Thumps Houston Field at Bogies Lone Star Billiards Tour / Houston, TX by InsidePOOL Staff
emy “Double J” Jones met up in the final four with James Davis, Jr., who’d edged out Chad Vilmon 9-3 win over Jones pitted him against Compton, who’d sent Gunia west 9-4.
On the one-loss side, Gabe “The Babe” Owen was making a run for the finals, moving through Gabriel 9-8, and Gunia 9-6 before running into James Baraks in the quarterfinals. Baraks had been Classicrun, posting wins over Hickerson 9-6, Joe Johnson 9-2, and Jones 9-4, and he didn’t stop there. His Ladies’ Results: Owen put him in the against who’d to Compton hot seat ma 1st semifinal Jillian match Martinez Davis, $200 4th fallen Terry9-6 Petresino in the$50
2nd Cristina De La Garza $150 5th Robyn Petresino
Davis was ready toRick take Casper another shot at Compton, though, and he put Baracks in third with a $100 Angela Martinez A whopping 90-player field headed out to the Lone Star Tour’shis ticket3rd punching to the finals. Taking an early lead in the true double-elimination finals, Davis m Bogies Houston Classic IV the weekend of August 15-16. sibilityThe of a second set appear likely. After getting up 3-0, though, he soon found himself tied at 4, $2,100-added event was packed with talent, including Louisiana’s but that win turned out to be his last. In true champion fashion, Compton took five games straight, own Gary Abood and Derrick Fontenot; Mississippi’s Jerrya tournament-winning Slivka; break and run.
and Texas favorites Sylver Ochoa, Charlie Bryant, and Billy Sharp. However, it was another Texan, Zaid Thweib, who ultimately walked On Saturday, while the 9-ball event was going full-force, the finals of the one-pocket event, whi away with the lion’s share of the prize money for his first-place finish.with 52 entrants, were playing out with Gabe Owen coming through the one-loss side to ta Thursday
two sets against Danny Harriman, 3-0 and 3-1. On Sunday, in the finals of the 15-entrant ladies’ ev Saturday’s play produced few upsets on the winners’ side; however, Slivka’s impressive 9-2 win over Bryant earned him Colbert a spot took in first with a 7-6 win over Michelle McDermott. the final eight on the winners’ side. Sunday’s winners’ side final four included Mike Alonzo versus Strickland and Thweib versus Slivka that ended up a Strickland-Thweib shoot-out for the hot seat. After a few key misses, Thweib quickly capitalized over Strickland 9-5.
On the one-loss side Tony Scott fell prey to Bryant, while Sharp fell to Ochoa after Ochoa also suffered a loss to the seemingly unstoppable Slivka. Slivka met up with Bryant on the one-loss side and was laid to rest 7-3, and Ochoa also put away Mike Alonzo, who suffered a loss to Strickland on the winners’ side final eight.
Charlie Bryant, Zaid Thweib, Dennis Strickland
1st Zaid Thweib $1,100 2nd Charlie Bryant $700 3rd Dennis Stricklanc $500 4th Sylver Ochoa $350 5th Jerry Slivka $250 Mike Alonso The first set was a race to 9. Though Thweid jumped to a 3-0 7th Tony Scott $115 Brittany Colbert, Evelyn Dysart, Michelle McDermott lead, Bryant brought it to 3-2. After a rack-running exchange, Bryant Billy Sharp earned a two-game lead 8-6 and broke and ran the next rack to win 9-6. The second set began as the first did, with Thweid jumping to a 3-0 lead and Bryant returning the favor to tie it at 3-all. They exchanged the next four racks, but then Thweid was able to close the match out 7-5 and break Bryant’s three-tournament winning streak. The Ochoa-Bryant shoot-out for third went all Bryant’s way 7-1, as well as with rival player Strickland, who also fell prey 7-3 to “Hillbilly.” Bryant then moved on to play Thweib in the true double-elimination final match.
9th Derek Fontenot $50 Larry Herrin Hunter Blackwell Rene Rendon 13th Henry Rocha $30 Gary Abood Compton, Nick Hood Chip Evelyn Dysart, Mike Durbin, J Josh Hughes
In the $300-added women’s event, Jillian Martinez came through the one-loss side to defeat Cristina De La Garza 7-4, 7-6 in the final match. Also, Charlie Brown won the Poison AR4 Cue and Brandon Turner, former junior player, won the Predator Air Jump Cue.
October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 59
Baraks Blasts Breaker’s Billiards Competition
Main Event Results:
Breaker’s Billiards Annual Tournament / Mobile, AL by Lea Andrews
It took Jamie Baraks almost two full days to do it, but he made his way through a tough field to claim first in Breaker’s Billiards Annual $10,000-guaranteed tournament. The event, held August 1-2, drew 96 players from around the country to Mobile, AL.
Baraks found himself in the winners’ side final four late Sunday night, and he blew past Arlo Walsman to face Ryan “The Genie Man” McCreesh, who’d just gotten past Nick Vita, in the hot seat match. Baraks came out on top, sending McCreesh to fight for a rematch. Over on the one-loss side, Charlie “Hillbilly” Bryant made his way past Gary Abood only to fall to Jesse Middlebrook, while Sparky Ferrell knocked out Joseph Cole and Will Haagenssen before getting knocked out by Walsman. Walsman went on to the quarterfinal match against Middlebrook, who was coming off a win over Vita. Placing Middlebrook squarely in fourth, Walsman went on to face McCreesh in the one-loss semifinals. For both men, reaching the finals would mean a chance at avenging a loss to Baraks, but only one could go on, and Walsman was the one who earned it.
When the finals began, it was already Monday morning. Late the night before, a fresher Baraks had cut Walsman down 9-1. At 6 a.m., after fatigue had thoroughly set in for both players, it was hill-hill in the first match of the true double-elimination final set. The final 9 ball could either crown a winner or push the tournament well into breakfast time, but it was Baraks who sank it, earning first place after a stellar undefeated run. Breaker’s Billiards also hosted a mini 16-man 10-ball tournament on Friday night. The $500 entry fee kept the competition strong, and Larry Nevel took down Danny Smith 11-9 in the finals of the single-elimination event.
Hillbilly Back on Top at Fast Eddie’s Billiards Fast Eddie’s Olhausen 9-Ball Tour / College Station, TX by Lea Andrews
Charlie “Hillbilly” Bryant, who topped several Fast Eddie’s Olhausen 9-Ball Tour stops last year and split first at the last stop, went undefeated at the August 8-9 event to score his first solo win on the tour this year. Bryant was among the field of 43 who arrived for the $1,000-added event, held at Fast Eddie’s Billiards in College Station, TX. After sending Raul Escobedo west 9-6, Bryant faced Sylver Ochoa in the hot seat match, who’d had his own 9-6 win over Aaron Springs. Against Bryant, though, Ochoa couldn’t get the games on the string, and he moved to the other side of the bracket to try to make his way back to Bryant.
On the one-loss side, James Davis, Sr. was making his own run for the finals. Having notched up wins over Grady Cooper 7-4 and Jason Bagby 7-5, Davis greeted Escobedo from the winners’ side and put him promptly into fifth. Also landing in fifth was David Henson, who’d taken down Frank Ferrer 7-5 and Jason Stewart 7-2 before falling 7-5 to Springs. The quarterfinal match between Springs and Davis ended in Davis’s favor 7-4, putting him into the semifinals against Ochoa, the very person who’d earlier put him on the left side of the bracket. This time, Davis was the one who came out on top, punching his ticket to the finals 7-4.
1st Jamie Baraks $4,000 2nd Arlo Walsman 3rd Ryan McCreesh 4th Jesse Middlebrook 5th Nick Vita $350 Sparky Ferrell 7th Charlie Bryant Will Haagenssen
9th Gary Abood $200 $2,000 Kenneth Brisbon $1,000 Derek Fontenot $500 Joseph Cole 13th Mike Wilson $125 Jerry Slivka $250 Scotty Townsend Mitch Yarborough
10-Ball Results: 1st 2nd 3rd
Larry Nevel $5,000 Danny Smith $2,000 Jonathan Hennessee $500 Jamie Baraks
Lampert Double-Dips Marr
OB Cues Ladies’ 9-Ball Tour / Waco, TX by InsidePOOL Staff Amanda Lampert came back from the one-loss side to double-dip Lisa Marr in the nail-biting finals of the OB Cues Ladies’ 9-Ball Tour’s August 29-30 stop. Hosted by Fast Eddie’s in Waco, TX, the event attracted 45 players to compete for their share of the $2,000-added prize fund.
On Sunday morning, the field had been reduced to 16 players. On the winners’ side, Marr defeated Michelle Cortez, while Lampert bested Jennifer Kraber to set up the match for the hot seat. Marr managed to come out as the winner 7-4 after the set was tied at 4. The finals saw these two match up once again, with each set going the distance. Lampert managed to grab the first set 7-6 and set up the second set in the true double-elimination format. Both players ground out the set to another hill-hill battle, and Lampert again came out on top to take first place and the $750 payday. Marr, though, continues her points lead for 2009 with her second-place finish.
Results: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 7th
Amanda Lampert Lisa Marr Jennifer Kraber Orietta Strickland Michelle Cortez Tara Williams Rachel Hurst Jillian Martinez
$750 $550 $400 $265 $150 $100
9th Becky Jones $75 Jennifer Pavlovick Michelle Abernathy Lisa Henderson-Major 13th Kyu Yi $50 Robbie Daugherty Julie Stephenson Sherrie Palma
In the true double-elimination finals, Davis got off to a strong start, finding himself on the hill 8-5, one game away from pushing the second set. Bryant, though, had other plans, taking four straight games to close out first in one 9-8 set.
1st Charlie Bryant 2nd James Davis, Sr. 3rd Sylver Ochoa $460 4th Aaron Springs $300
$1,000 5th David Henson $620 Raul Escobedo 7th Jason Stewart Jason Bagby
60 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Jennifer Kraber, Lisa Marr, Amanda Lampert
Jethwa Undefeated at Fast Eddie’s Billiards Fast Eddie’s Olhausen 9-Ball Tour / Houston, TX by Lea Andrews
Andy Jethwa let no man stand in his way as he strolled undefeated to first place at the tenth stop of the Fast Eddie’s Olhausen 9-Ball Tour. The $1,000-added event drew 47 players August 22-23 to Fast Eddie’s Billiards in Houston, TX.
Jethwa got past Dalton Riley 9-7 to reach the hot seat match, where he met Hunter Blackwell, who’d just sent Nick Hood west 9-6. Holding Blackwell to five games, Jethwa earned his spot in the finals and waited in the hot seat for an opponent. On the left side of the bracket, Jason Brown was making his move, taking down Tom Wallace to meet Raul Escobedo, where he found himself battling to hill-hill. Marking up the final 9, Brown welcomed Hood over from the winners’ bracket by dealing him a 7-4 loss. Meanwhile, James Davis, Jr. eased by Michael Alonzo to meet Ernesto Bayuad, whom he put in seventh 7-5. After squeaking past Riley 7-6, Davis arrived in the quarterfinals, where he was soon hill-hill with Brown, but this time, he couldn’t get the final rack. Brown, continuing into the semifinals, marked up a 7-5 win over Blackwell to get a crack at Jethwa in the finals.
Brown got off to a good start in the finals, getting to within two games of pushing a second set while Jethwa still needed five for the win. But Jethwa hadn’t lost a set the whole weekend, and he wasn’t about to. Winning four of the next five games, Jethwa got the score to hill-hill, and he took the final rack for the set and the tournament. On Sunday, 15 ladies vied for first in the $150-added ladies’ event. Kyu Ye went undefeated through the field to earn $200 for the win, edging out Terry Ptrisino 7-6 in just one set of the true double-elimination finals. Ptrisino took home $150 for her second-place finish, while Helen Hayes in third and Deanna Henson in fourth earned $100 and $50, respectively.
UPCOMING CENTRAL TOURNAMENTS 10/10-11 10/24-25 10/24-25 10/24-25 10/25 10/31-11/1
Fast Eddie’s 9-Ball Tour Fast Eddie’s 9-Ball Tour OB Cues Ladies’ Tour Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Viking Cue 9-Ball Tour Brickyard 9-Ball Bar Table Classic
1st Andy Jethwa 2nd Jason Brown 3rd Hunter Blackwell 4th James Davis, Jr.
Fast Eddie’s Billiards Fast Eddie’s Billiards Rusty’s Billiards Cornfed Red’s Billiard Café Cornfed Red’s Billiard Café Brickyard Billiards
$1,000 $650 $500 $300
Waco, TX Amarillo, TX Arlington, TX Columbus, OH Columbus, OH Indianapolis, IN
5th Dalton Riley Nick Hood 7th Ernesto Bayuad Raul Escobedo
254-399-9300 806-355-2540 817-468-9191 614-834-1000 614-834-1000 317-248-0555
$2,100 $2,100 $2,000 $1,500 $500 $1,500
Open Open Ladies Amateurs Juniors Open
UPCOMING WESTERN TOURNAMENTS 10/3-4 10/14-18 10/17-18 10/20-25
Arizona Women’s Billiard Tour WPBA Pacific Coast Classic Desert Classic Tour Western BCA 9-Ball Championships
Rademakers Rakes in WPBA Qualifier
Bullshooters Chinook Winds Casino Bullshooters Chinook Winds Casino Resort
Northwest Women’s Pool Association / Bellevue, WA by Suzanne Smith
The weekend of August 15-16 was a great one for competition at the Northwest Women’s Pool Association’s fifth tour stop of the season, hosted by The Parlor in Bellevue, WA. Twenty-six women came out to fight for the title and the tour’s last WPBA qualifier of 2009, with Tamara Rademakers edging out the victory. In the winners’ side final four, the top two players on the tour, Liz Cole and Cindy Sliva, matched up, while Mary Olson went head to head with Suwanna Kroll. Cole prevailed 7-2, while Kroll won 7-1 to advance to the hot seat match to play each other, where Cole continued her streak with a 7-3 win to rest in the hot seat.
Now on the one-loss side, Kroll went up against Rademakers, who had been working her way through the chart, in the semifinals. A decisive 7-1 win gave Rademakers a chance at the final match, with Kroll taking home third place, her best finish yet on the tour.
Phoenix, AZ Lincoln City, OR Phoenix, AZ Lincoln City, OR
602-441-2447 888-244-6665 602-441-2447 888-244-6665
$300 NA $1,000
Ladies Ladies Open
Cole had already dealt Rademakers one loss already and was prepared to do so again in the single race-to-9 finals. But after the score was knotted at 3, Rademakers surged ahead to take a 7-3 lead. The players split the next two racks, and then Cole caught her second wind and managed to make it a hill-hill final battle. When Cole missed a 7-9 carom, Rademakers was ready to go, and she pocketed the final three balls to earn the title and the qualifier.
1st Tamara Rademakers $405 + qualifier 5th Elizabeth Jensen $80 2nd Liz Cole $265 Mary Olson 3rd Suwanna Kroll $170 7th Mikki Small $60 4th Cindy Sliva $130 Julie Valdez October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 61
Martinez Takes Tough Field to Win
Second Annual Chuck Markulis Memorial / Sacramento, CA by Lea Andrews Out of a stellar 91-player field, Rafael Martinez emerged undefeated to take first in the Second Annual Chuck Markulis Memorial tournament, held August 15-16 at Hard Times Billiards in Sacramento, CA. Chuck Markulis’ son and daughter-in-law, Michael and Karen Markulis, owners of Hard Times, added $2,500 to the tournament pot, while Joe Gonzales added $500 and announced the opening of his room, Hard Times Billiards in Modesto, CA.
Following a 9-7 win over Sacramento’s Jeff Gregory, Martinez met in the hot seat match Jose Parica, who’d squeaked past Santos Sambajon Jr. 9-8. Managing to hold “Amang” to 7 games, Martinez awaited an opponent for the finals. On the one-loss side, Ernesto Dominguez, whose son Oscar had suffered an early exit at the hands of Sy Nakashima, got past Dale Altajora 7-5 to meet 71-year-old Hard Times legend “Little” Al Romero, who managed to push the match hill-hill. It was Dominguez who marked up the final game, following it up with a hill-hill match against Gregory, but this time coming up short. Meanwhile, Southern California’s Greg Balliet backed up a 7-6 win over Mike Mitchell with a 7-6 win over George Michaels, who was coming off a 7-2 win over young Austin Murphy. Next up for Balliet was Sambajon, but Balliet managed just four games against the Filipino powerhouse, who went on to a 7-5 win over Gregory, earning a rematch with Parica in the semifinals. There he once again took the match hill-hill, but this time, he was the one to get the satisfaction of the final 9 ball, and he was the one with the chance to dethrone Martinez. But wouldn’t them on ting go,
in the true double-elimination final match, Martinez allow Sambajon the chance to take the first set and put equal ground. Taking control of the match and not letMartinez secured first place with a strong 9-4 win.
Santon Sambajon Jr.
1st Rafael Martinez 2nd Santos Sambajon Jr. 3rd Jose Parica 4th Jeff Gregory 5th Greg Balliet Ernesto Dominguez 7th George Michaels Al Ronero
$2,000 $1,350 $500 $400 $300 $250
Novack Earns Qualifier in Tucson
9th Austin Murphy Mike Mitchell Jaynerd Orque Dale Altajora 13th John Henderson Sy Nakashima Rex Chan Robert Aldana 17th Chris MacDonald Duane Grimes Greg Harada Fach Garcia Morro Paez Chong Vang Greg Furuta
Arizona Women’s Billiard Tour / Tucson, AZ by Lea Andrews
After taking down everyone in her path to the finals of the Arizona Women’s Billiards Tour August August 15-16, Stacy Novack earned first place and a ticket to WPBA’s Pacific Coast Classic. Novack was among the field of 15 who gathered for the $500-added WPBA qualifier event, held at Pockets Pool and Pub in Tucson, AZ. Following a 7-4 win over Darlene Stinson, Novack arrived in the hot seat match against Adrianne Ferguson, who was coming off her own 7-4 win over Sara Miller. Novak made quick work of Ferguson, sending her west 7-1. On the one-loss side, Annie Gray took down last stop’s winner Angel Paglia 7-4 only to fall hill-hill to Susan Williams, who’d just gotten past Kathleen Lawless 7-4. Meanwhile, Heather Torpin had a strong 7-1 win over Carol Webb to face Susan Mello, who’d ousted Barbara Lee 7-3. Torpin came out on top 7-5 to face Miller, whom she edged out 7-6 to meet Williams, who’d taken care of Stinson 7-4. Williams came out strong against Torpin, holding her to two games to advance to the one-loss semifinals against Ferguson. There, Williams made it to the hill but couldn’t close it out, giving Ferguson her chance to avenge her hot seat loss. In the true double-elimination finals, Ferguson started off well, getting on top 3-2, but she couldn’t stay there. Novack tied it at 3 and pulled ahead to 5-3, though Ferguson fought to stay close, getting the score to 6-5. In the following rack, Ferguson’s miss on the 6 ball left Novack hooked, but she made a clean hit, leaving Ferguson hooked herself. Ferguson managed to hit the 6, but the cue ball found a pocket, giving Novack ball in hand for a winning run-out.
62 InsidePOOL Magazine ◊ October 2009
Stacy Novack Results:
1st Stacy Novack $290 + qualifier 2nd Adrianne Ferguson $195 3rd Susan Williams $125 4th Heather Torpin $85 5th Darlene Stinson $55 Sara Miller
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October 2009 ◊ InsidePOOLmag.com 63
Master Chalk. No Doubt.
Our 88th Year