Derby City Day Three – Bigfoot Final Four and Banks Final 22

Fedor Gorst - Photo courtesy of Dave Thomson (
Derby City Classic XX, January 19-27, 2018
LIVE from the Horseshoe Southern Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN
Diamond BIG Foot Challenge
Format: Race to 11, single elimination, alternate break, all balls count.
Day 3: Our opening encounter was the talk of the casino. How would 20 year old Austrian “wunderkind”  Joshua “Killer” Filler’s firepower compare to the guts and glory of Filipino Roberto Gomez?
Well, it didn’t. The fast and loose shooting style caught up with him quickly today as his early carelessness gave Gomez the opportunity to leap into an insurmountable lead.
Filler’s TPA dipped into the 700s. That is low for a pro. Gomez showing no mercy, and kept twisting the knife as he shot Joshua into submission.
This, welcome to the real world Mr. Filler, will surely be a wake-up call and allow him to realize that occasional conservative play wins matches, too.
Mika and Shane then entered the Accu-Stats Arena.
It was a true battle of two of the best shot makers in the game.
In the beginning it was all Immonen–until, by missing shape on an 8, he also missed the opportunity to take a 5-1 lead. He blinked and Shane had shaved the short-lived, Immonen advantage to tie the match at 4.
The $4000 encounter continued as they went back and forth defending their break until Mika erred by, mistakingly, picking up the 9 thinking that it was the cue ball. Luckily, for him, Van Boening over-cut an easy 8 and  instead of moving 2 games ahead, they were tied at 7.
Van Boening seems to be in bit of a rut. His proverbial cue ball-on-a-string has abandoned him. He’s been struggling and his frustration is visible. He sighs a lot as he’s forced to exit his innings early.
Now, at 10-8, Immonen’s only 2 game lead since early in their encounter, he overconfidently, one-stroked the 5 and his first opportunity to win was gone. 10-9.
He got a second one and, this time, overcut a difficult 2 to leave it in the jaws. 10-10…we thought! Shane overshot the 8 to scratch in the corner opposite the hanging 9. Shape on the 10, sitting near the spot, was impossible to miss.
“Come on!” Mika yelled as the final orb dropped into the pocket. His exclamation manifested his joy of overcoming a demon; It has been a while since he’d beaten Van Boening.
An interesting stat: Shane’s TPA was 36 points higher than Mika’s…and he lost! A more impressive one: Mika: break and runouts - 5, Shane, 2.
Our after dinner encounter was similar to the afternoon one of young, conservative fire power facing Filipino gung-ho gusto: The cobra versus the bull.
Jeffrey ‘The Bull” DeLuna has one of the most powerful, effortless strokes out there. BIG Foot does not intimidate him. He plays like he’s on a Diamond bar box.
The 17 year old Russian also wields great power. Compound that with the most enviable attribute, patience. Add one more important ingredient to the proven recipe for success, a superior mental game. Now, you have an invincible combination…when applied.
So far, Fedor had brought all of the above to the table.
Jeffrey’s performance, so far, has been impressive, too. Once the Bull gets stomping’ around the arena, when the dust settles, the score shows who’s been doing the skewering.
Gorst had the first opportunity to manifest his ability. A few faltering steps from Jeffrey and Fedor was quickly ahead 7-3. And once ahead, there was no way he was giving up that lead. 
Maybe the Bull had too much stroke as he overran position on elementary outs. Had he gotten hypnotized by the cobra’s slow, deliberate movements? He’s still feeling the sting.
Regardless, he was allowed one more game before Gorst closed it out at 11-4.
Now, to the last event in the quarters: Morra and Chinakhov.
Chinakhov won the first game. Morra rallied with 5!
When down 7-2 and fighting back ’til 8-9, it looked like Ruslan was going to repeat last night’s performance when he overturned a huge deficit and stole the match from Corey Deuel.
His confidence now rising as, for he first time in the match, his TPA inched ahead of Morra’s to .866.
Just as swiftly as his comeback, the same shot missed twice, cost Ruslan the match. It also allowed us to see Morra’s unshakeable composure as, on the hill, and left with a long, blind back-cut into the corner, he smoothly stroked it in to leave perfect position and secure his berth in the semi’s.
Roberto Gomez .845,  def. Joshua Filler .782 , 11-6
Mika Immonen ..846  def. Shane Van Boening .881, 11-9
Fedor Gorst .886 def. Jeffrey De Luna .719, 11-4
John Morra .867 def. Ruslan Chinakhov .843, 11-8
Semi Finals:
2 pm: Gomez vs. Immonen
4:30 pm: Gorst vs. Morra
The losers are guaranteed $4,000.
9 pm: The FINALS!
Winner is guaranteed $16,000: Runner up, $8,000
Total prize fund; $32,000!
Play continues today: View on
Semi Finals:
2 pm: Gomez vs. Immonen
4:30 pm: Gorst vs. Morra
9 pm: The FINALS!
471 players vie for $10,000. Race to 3, 9-Ball–Short Rack
Now 22 left going into Round 9:
The undefeated are Justin Bergman, John Brumback, Shane Van Boening, Corey Deuel, Skyler Woodward and, from the United Arab Emirates, Jalal Yousif. All still have a buy-back.
Main names still in contention are: Shaw, given his one loss by Louis Demarco; Bustey, bounced to the booth by Frost; Daulton by Woodward, and Nevel is never out of it, too.
There has been a collision of casualties as Gorst, then Morra. put Pagulayan to rest; Billy Thorpe was vanquished by Lee Vann Corteza and Bergman; Brumback froze out Frost; Jalal ejected Danny Smith, and Tony Chohan felt the challenge from Filipinos Alcano and Bustamante.
Bank of the day: When Frost and Bustey were tied 2-2 and 4 balls apiece, one thing was inevitable, one of them was going bye, bye to the booth.
Needless to say, exceptional safety play was the order of the day. And, they were both masterfully leaving the ball in seemingly impossible bankable positions…until Frost, fearless, stepped to the table and announced,”Four (rails) in the corner.”
The spinning orb sped around the angles. All the body english that Scott could employ didn’t make the ball nudge the inch it needed to find the hole.
Bustey, back at the table, made a valiant effort at a two railer, again, with the emphasis on safety. Didn’t he see how close Scott had just gotten? That’s not “safe.”
Again Scott declared, ”Four in the corner.” He fired it off the first rail. The sweaters twitching now. Bingo; No body english required. Buy, buy Bustey.
The George Fels Memorial Straight Pool Challenge is streaming at, today!
29 Straight Pool posted there C note for 12 attempts at a century ball run or more.
Jayson Shaw complied; 112.
That score will surely double as the 8 highest runs will face off in single elimination. If scheduling permits, Accu-Stats will stream, at least, the finals.
Don’t miss a stroke at
Accu-Stats thanks its Arena Sponsors: Diamond Billiards, Simonis Cloth, Cyclop Balls, Lucasi Custom, MEZZ Cues, McDermott Cues, National Billiard Academy, and Samsara Cues.