Cacciola wins first Tri-State event

Richard Ng, Al Cacciola and Rhio Anne Flores

Al Cacciola survived a double hill battle to get into the hot seat, and then, prior to the finals of the Tri-State Tour stop on Saturday, May 13, agreed to a split with Annie Flores.  As a result, Flores, who'd won three straight, double hill matches on the loss-side, chalked up her second straight, second place finish on the tour. The $750-added event drew 26 entrants to Port Richmond Billiards on Staten Island, NY.

Cacciola opened his bid with victories over Tony Ignomirello, and Jaydev Zaveri and moved among the winners' side final four to meet Tom McManamon. Flores, in the meantime, faced Richard Ng. Cacciola defeated McManamon 6-3, while Richard Ng was busy winning a double hill struggle versus Flores. Ng and Cacciola locked up in another double hill match that sent Ng to a meetup with Flores in the semifinals, and left Cacciola in the hot seat.

Flores moved over to pick up Keith Adamik, who'd defeated Gary Murgia 7-4 and Carl Yusuf Khan 7-5 to reach her. Tony Ignomirello, who'd been sent west by Cacciola in the opening round, fought back through five matches, the last two of which - 6-4 over Jaydev Zaveri and 6-3 over Quin Y. Chen - set him up to face McManamon. Ignomirello chalked up his sixth, loss-side win, 6-3 over McManamon, as Flores was occupied with Adamik, and the completion of her second straight double hill match.

Flores ended Ignomirello's streak with a double hill win in the quarterfinals, and then, reversed the results of her previous match against Ng, by tallying her third double hill win in the semifinals. Cacciola and Flores are friends, and the two chose to end the (late) night right there, splitting the winnings and leaving Cacciola as the undefeated, declared winner.

Tour representatives thanked the owners and staff at Port Richmond Billiards for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. The next stop on the Tri-State Tour is a $1000-added, B-D handicapped event, scheduled for May 20 at BQE Billiards in Jackson Heights, NY.