Brucato wins 11 on the loss side, and downs Grau in opening set of Western New York finals

In a rarely-seen triple elimination format, which gives players a third chance at advancing through a tournament bracket, Nick Brucato, tour director of the Western New York Tour, worked his way through a field of 37 to win a Saturday, November 22 event, hosted by East Ridge Billiards in Rochester, NY. The format, in use at this bar table, 8-ball event created a separate loss-side bracket, into which players were moved when they lost a normal loss-side match. In this separate bracket, players met for a single game before advancing, eventually to challenge players in the final stages of the normal loss-side bracket.
"We're calling it The Grind 8-Ball series, and it was a success," said Brucato and new tour assistant, Aaron Cameron, of the triple elimination format. "We're going to do six more a year just like it, including one on Saturday, December 20, we're calling the Jingle Grind."
Brucato lost his opening match to Seth Tamavoughn, and embarked on an 11-match winning streak that would eventually put him into the finals against Dave Grau. Tamavoughn moved on, eventually advancing to a winners' side semifinal against Lyn Wechsler. Dave Grau and Sean Zen squared off in the other. Grau and Wechsler advanced to the hot seat match, 3-1, over Zen and Tamavoughn. Grau and Wechsler fought a double hill battle that eventually sent Wechsler to  the semifinals.
On the loss side, with five notches on his loss-side belt already, Brucato defeated Phil Johnson and tour partner Cameron, both 2-1, to pick up Zen. Tamavoughn drew Chad Strong, who'd gotten by Andre Ianello and Luis Ricio, both 2-1. Tamavoughn and Brucato hooked up for a rematch in the quarterfinals, once Tamavoughn had shut out Strong and Brucato had defeated Zen 2-1. Brucato successfully wreaked his vengeance on Tamavoughn 2-1 and then, in what would have been a double elimination semifinal, shut out Lyn Wechsler 2-0.
Wechsler now had to face Strong in a single game. Strong won, but was then defeated in a single game against Ricio.  Ricio now turned to face Brucato in the semifinals, and Brucato defeated him 2-0 for a shot at Grau in the hot seat. Brucato took the opening set 3-2, at which point, he and Grau opted out of a deciding match and split the top prizes.
Brucato thanked East Ridge Billiards owner, Sean Zen for his support and hospitality, along with Ozone Billiards for their sponsorship of the event.