Billy Thorpe Wins Turning Stone Classic XXIX
AzB Staff
Jan. 10, 2018
Billy Thorpe (Photo courtesy of Taylor Workman)
Billy Thorpe (Photo courtesy of Taylor Workman)
While most fans in attendance felt that Jayson Shaw was the odds on favorite, it was Billy Thorpe who earned the title at the Turning Stone Resort & Casino on January 5th - 8th, with an undefeated run through a field of 128 players. 
 
Thorpe fought his way to the hot seat match with wins over Jon McConnell, John Morra, Brandon Shuff, Canadian Adam Monture and Albania’s Besar Spahiu. His opponent for the hot-seat was another Canadian, Joey Cicero. In Cicero’s final eight match, he upset Shaw with a 9-5 match that saw Cicero controlling the table with a soft, controlled break. Shaw held an early lead at 4-0, but Cicero won 9 of the next 10 racks for the win. 
 
After Cicero sent Zion Zvi to the one loss side, he came up one rack short of the hot-seat as Thorpe came back from 8-7 down to win the match 9-8. 
 
On the one loss side, Cicero found Dennis Hatch on a roll. Hatch had lost an early match to Shaw, but put together a six match winning streak that included notable wins over Mika Immonen, Zvi and Spahiu. Hatch kept his dreams of a Turning Stone title alive with a dominating 9-2 win over Cicero in the semi-final match.
 
The final race to 13 looked as if it would be a quick one, with Thorpe racing to an early 10-2 lead. That was when Hatch took control of the match and what was an 8 rack Thorpe lead was only a 3 rack lead when Thorpe next won a rack at 11-8. Hatch wasn’t done though, as he won the next 3 racks to tie things at 11-11. In the next rack, Hatch looked to be running out for his first lead at 12-11, but bad shape on a 4-ball spelled his doom as Thorpe ran out that rack for a 12-11 lead of his own. Hatch would get back to the table in the 24th rack, but a missed 5-ball in the side from Hatch and a bank on that same 5-ball from Thorpe was all that Thorpe needed for the win. 
 
Thorpe collected $8000 for the win, with Hatch settling for $5000 in second place prize money.