Griffin Tops Field in North Carolina

Johnny Griffin

The Fury Carolina amateur tour was in full force in Raleigh, North Carolina on July 16 at Brown's Billiards. This was the first time the tour visited Brown's, and the reaction was great. Players enjoyed the atmosphere and the ten 9' tables that room owner David Huffman maintained in excellent condition. Huffman was excited about the crowd that was waiting at the door when he opened up. A strong field of 38 ended up playing for a payday in excess of $1200. Adding to the excitement, it was announced prior to play that this event was going to award triple points, throwing the points race in an uproar.

Jimmy Faircloth, a well known player to the rest of the field worked his way through the bracket on the right side, reaching the hot seat with an overall record of 35-25 including two hill-hill battles with Paul Allison and Johnny Griffin. Griffin, who had gone through the winner's side with a 28-18 record that included a 7-5 win over season points-leader David Slaughter, had to win one more on the one-loss side to get another chance at Faircloth. He did it with authority stopping Cary Dunn 5-1 in the only match he played on the left side to get back to the final. Dunn finished 3rd and David Slaughter came in 4th.

In the final match, Griffin's momentum carried over from his previous match. He got out to a 3-1 lead before Faircloth tied things up. Griffin then took 3 straight bringing the score to 6-3. Faircloth managed to get a couple more games in the race to 9, but Griffin was on top of his game and came out on top with a 9-5 finish. Griffin told tournament director Steve Jennings after the match, that the triple points announcement was strong motivation for him. "I knew when I heard the announcement that it was time to get focused." This was Griffin's first win this season on the tour, and pushed him into the top spot in the points race ahead of Dunn and Slaughter.

1st Johnny Griffin $460
2nd Jimmy Faircloth $270
3rd Cary Dunn $180
4th David Slaughter $100
5th/6th David Brown, Mike Kearns $75
7th/8th Eddie Little, Paul Allison $50