Border Battle Won by Team America One More Time

Team USA

The fourth edition of the Border Battle Team 9-Ball Challenge has been taken, again, by Team America. The Yanks won this one handily with the team of Johnny Archer (Captain), Shane Van Boening, Corey Deuel and Tony Robles outdistancing the Canadian stalwarts Alain Martel (Captain), Jason Klatt, Chris Orme and John Morra with a final score of 71-51.  

Outdistance is an understatement. Lead commentator Jim Wych got no arguments from anyone when he passed around the theory that the 30-minute matches would average about five racks per match. The players soon proved the experts wrong. The format was for a series of 15 of these matches to be held with the scores (one point per rack) to be cumulative. The team with the most points at the end would win the top prize of $32,000 while the runner-ups would pocket  $20,000. In the first match the Canadian team of Alain Martel and Jason Klatt raced past Johnny Archer and Shane Van Boening 6-3. Not only had the favored Americans been trounced, but 9 games had paced the wire.  

It was the USA proving the Ginger WIzard fallible next as the American side of Tony Robles and Corey Deuel equaled the 9-rack tally of the previous round and beat up the Canadian duo of Chris Orme and John Motta 7-2 to send America out to a lead it would never relinquish. The speed record for the event was set in the next round by the surprising pairing of Corey Deuel against John Morra. Neither man is known as a race horse around the pool table. But Deuel notched up six wins versus the four of Morra to complete 10 racks inside the 30-minute clock. So much for plans.  

The Americans slowly built their lead from there. Generally finishing each period with a 1 or 2 game advantage, the Americans led at the end of the first 8 matches 39-28. But just when you thought the Canadians might lay down and take their medicine they sent out the scotch doubles pairing of Jason Klatt and Chris Orme. These two rarely gave up control of the table and romped out to a 5-2 match win over Tony Robles and Corey Deuel to narrow the margin. Then, after Shane Van Boening gave a 6-2 whipping to Alain Martel Jason Klatt came back for Canada and treated Tony Robles just as rudely (6-2).  

In the end there was no hope for the valiant Canadians. They trailed going into the last match 66-47 and it only got worse as the American final foursome took down the Canadian ensemble 5-4 to bring us to that final 71-51 ending. We wish to to give a tip of the AZB hat to Canada Billiards and Bowling for providing the Black Crown Tournament table, to RackTight for being the official rack of the event and to Grace Nakamura for her tireless work as the referee. The tournament was played with Aramith balls on Simonis 860 cloth. The Border Battle was filmed in HD by Dave Hatch and his team at Whistlestop Productions of Toronto to be aired this fall by TSN on three of their networks including TSN HD. 


Team America - 71 points  $32,000
Team Canada - 51 points  $20,000