Guzman follows runner-up finish at the Ginky Memorial with undefeated run on the Tri-State Tour

Tony Liang, Juan Guzman and Mike Figueroa
It came within a match of being a repeat performance. On Memorial Day weekend, Juan Guzman took the hot seat at the 6th Annual George "Ginky" Sansouci Memorial tournament, only to have his ambitions of becoming that event's 6th champion upset by Tony Liang, who came from deep on the loss side to challenge and eventually defeat him. A week later (June 4-5), Guzman was in the hot seat again, this time at a $2,000-added event on the Tri-State Tour, that had drawn 41 entrants to the same location - Steinway Billiards in Astoria (Queens), NY. And once again, Guzman found himself watching Tony Liang work his way through the loss side. This time, however, Liang's aspirations for a re-match against Guzman were thwarted in a semifinal match against Mike Figueroa. Guzman went on to complete his undefeated run with a second victory over Figueroa in the finals to claim the title.
Following victories over Chris Kelly, Ramon Feliciano, and Lidio Ramirez, all of whom chalked up five racks against him, Guzman ran into Liang. With memories of the Ginky Memorial no doubt lurking in his mind, Guzman sent Liang to the loss side 7-5 and drew Alex Osipov in a winners' side semifinal. Figueroa, in the meantime, picked up Danny Recinos. 
Guzman chalked up his fifth straight 7-5 win, against Osipov, while Figueroa was sending Recinos to the loss side, double hill. Guzman moved into the hot seat for a second week in a row, defeating Figueroa 9-7 and then, waited on what he had to be thinking was Liang, but proved to be Figueroa.
Liang began his march toward a potential second matchup in the finals against Guzman with a 7-3 win over Duc Lam, and survived a double hill match versus Amir Rashad Uddin, to draw Osipov. Recinos picked up Andrea Shiffman, who'd eliminated Nevev Lipovac 6-2 and Ada Lio 6-4, to reach him.
Liang downed Osipov 7-4, and was joined in the quarterfinals by Recinos, who'd defeated Shiffman 6-3. Liang defeated Recinos 10-7 to pull within a single match of earning a spot in the finals. Figueroa put up a spirited, double hill fight that he eventually won to earn his re-match against Guzman.
It did not look good at the outset, as Figueroa opened the finals with four straight racks. Guzman, though, caught a gear of his own and responded with four to tie it. They traded racks to a 5-5 tie, before Guzman began to pull away. He chalked up three straight to reach the hill first. Figueroa added a final rack to make it 8-6, and Guzman chalked up the15th game to win the match and claim the event 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, scheduled for Sunday, June 12, will be hosted by The Cue Bar in Bayside (Queens), NY.