Vidal downs Pickering twice to capture The Freeze title
Skip Maloney - AzB Staff
Mar. 22, 2016
Mar. 22, 2016
They call it The Freeze; an annual event, hosted by Malarkey's Pool & Brew in Tacoma, WA. Given that temperatures throughout this year's March 5-6 event ranged in the upper 50s to low 60s, the title's a bit of a misnomer, and given the level of competition generally on display, you'd think it would boast a title with a touch more heat to it. Last year, Shane Van Boening defeated Rafael Martinez in the finals. This year, Marc Vidal and Simon Pickering worked their way around a host of other marquee names (Warren Kiamco, Jeffrey Ignacio and John Morra, for example) to be the last two standing. Vidal went undefeated in the $1,500-added event that drew 72 entrants to Malarkey's.
Vidal and Pickering met first in the hot seat match. Vidal had sent Kiamco to the loss side 7-4, as Pickering was doing likewise, 7-5, to Ignacio in the winners' side semifinals. Vidal moved into the hot seat 7-5 over Pickering and waited for him to get back.
On the loss side, Kiamco had the misfortune of running into a surging John Morra, who'd defeated Paul Poitier 7-4 and Eddie Carrido 7-2 to reach him. Ignacio picked up Damian Pongpanik, who'd just eliminated Sean Lewis and Dan Louie, both 7-3. Ignacio and Morra moved on to the quarterfiinals, both 7-5, over Pongpanik and Kiamco.
Morra defeated Ignacio 7-4, and then, by the same score, was himself eliminated in the semifinals by Pickering. Vidal required only a single set of the potential double elimination final, defeating Pickering 7-3, to complete his undefeated run and claim the 2016 Freeze title.