Druminski goes undefeated in his first Tri-State event

Steve Kaminow, Dax Druminski and Shivam Gupta
Dax Druminski proved to be the headliner on the February 13 stop on the Tri-State Tour, going undefeated to take his first Tri-State title.  In a somewhat equally compelling back story, Shivam Gupta and Steve Kaminow faced each other twice; once in the winners' side quarterfinals and again in the semifinals. Both matches went double hill, each yielding a different result. The $1,000-added, A/D handicapped event drew 25 entrants to Steinway Billiards in Astoria (Queens), NY.
Druminski's path went through Bob Toomey, Nyam Roy, and Erick Carrasco before coming up against Jaydev Zaveri in a winners' side semifinal. Kaminow, in the meantime, having just survived a first, double hill match versus Gupta, faced Kapriel Delimelkonoglu. Druminski downed Zaveri, double hill, and in the hot seat match, faced Kaminow, who'd sent Delimelkonoglu to the loss side 7-4. Druminski sent Kaminow to the semifinals 8-2 to claim the hot seat.
Gupta opened his five-match, loss-side winning streak with a 7-3 win over Thomas Schreiber and followed it with a 7-4 win over Juan Guzman, which set Gupta up to face Delimelkonoglu. Zaveri drew Carrasco, who'd shut out Bob Toomey and eliminated Dany Recinos 6-2. Gupta advanced to the quarterfinals 7-5 over Delimelkonoglu. Zaveri joined him after a 6-2 win over Carrasco.
Gupta ended Zaveri's run 7-4 in the quarterfinals and turned to face Kaminow for a second time. Again, the two battled to double hill, but Gupta prevailed for a shot at Druminski in the hot seat.
Druminksi opened strong, chalking up three, and then, after Gupta had won a rack, two more, for a commanding 5-1 lead. Gupta, though, came back with four straight to knot the match at 5-5. They would prove to be his last, however. Druminski completed his undefeated run with three in a row to win his first Tri-State title.
Tour representatives thanked Manny Stamatakis and his staff at Steinway Billiards, as well as sponsors Ozone Billiards, Sterling-Gaming, Kamui Tips, Ron Vitello, Phil Capelle, BlueBook Publishing, Human Kinetics , and Bloodworth Ball Cleaners. The next stop on the Tri-State Tour, to be hosted by Rockaway Billiards in Rockaway, NJ, is scheduled for Sunday, February 21.