Albergaria comes from the loss side to chalk up her second 2016 win on the JPNEWT
Skip Maloney - AzB Staff
Oct. 25, 2016
Oct. 25, 2016
Nicole Albergaria has won both stops on the 2016 J. Pechauer Northeast Women's Tour (JPNEWT) in which she has appeared. She went undefeated to win the tour's sixth stop back in July at Raxx Billiards in West Hempstead, NY and on the weekend of October 22-23, she won five on the loss side to meet and defeat hot seat occupant Emily Duddy in the finals of the tour's most recent stop. The $1,100-added event (which included a donation by Billy Bunn, made in memory of Florence Fuller), drew 20 entrants to a new venue for the JPNEWT - Eagle Billiards in Dickson City, PA.
The recipient of an opening round bye, Albergaria advanced to a double hill struggle she eventually won against Jenn Keeney, and then fell 7-4 to tour director, Linda Shea, who entered and finished the tournament as the tour's top-ranked competitor. Duddy, in the meantime, appearing in her first stop on the 2016 tour, got by some heavy hitters, like Kia Sidbury (#3 on the tour) and Borana Andoni, who, though making her first appearance on the 2016 JPNEWT, stepped to the table with an established reputation (10th on the tour in 2015, which included a victory in the season finale last year). Duddy downed them both and her 7-5 win over Andoni put her into the hot seat match against Dawn Fox (winner of the last JPNEWT stop), who'd sent Shea to the loss side 7-5 in the other winners' side semifinal. Duddy claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Fox and waited on Albergaria's return.
Albergaria started her loss-side campaign with a bang, shutting out Suzanne Sellet. She then downed Kathleen Lawless 7-3 to draw Andoni. Shea picked up Kidbury, who, following her defeat at the hands of Duddy, got by Melissa Jenkins 7-3 and Jenn Keeney 7-1.
Albergaria defeated Andoni 7-5, and was joined in the quarterfinal match by Shea, who'd eliminated Sidbury 7-1. The rematch went Albergaria's way 7-3, and by the same score, she eliminated Fox in the semifinals.
The modified race-to-9 format of the finals required Albergaria to reach seven games ahead of Duddy in the hot seat to extend the match to nine games. Early on, it didn't look as though that was going to happen, as Duddy took a moderately significant 4-0 lead right out of the gate. Albergaria, though, responded by first, making a very good bank shot on the 9-ball to win game five, and then winning six more to reach her 'seven' goal and the hill.
But it wasn't over yet. Duddy rallied to pull within one at 8-7. In rack #16, Duddy was at the table, shooting at the 6-ball; looking down table at it, where it rested closer to the lower right corner than it was to the lower left. Intervening balls, however, precluded a shot into the lower right corner, and she opted for the deep, right-side cut to put it in the lower left. The 6-ball dropped quickly, but the cue ball, moving to the lower right corner, did a double hit off two rails, angled up to the long rail, then bounced off the short rail and with speed to spare, dropped into the side pocket. Albergaria picked up the cue ball, connected the dots, and sunk the remaining three balls to claim the event title.
Regardless of the outcome of the tour's season finale, scheduled for November 12-13 at Triple Nines Bar & Billiards in Elkridge, MD, the 2016 top competitor award will go to tour director Linda Shea, who has appeared in all 12 stops on the tour, to date. She won the season opener, back in March and has won 70% of her matches, finishing, on average, in fourth place.
Tour representatives had high praise for the tour's new venue, Eagle Billiards. Newly renovated, it features 10 Brunswick, two bar box and three Diamond tables. Tour director Linda Shea thanked owner Chris Wilson for his hospitality, while players articulated their anticipation of a return to the venue in the season to come.