Guzman goes undefeated, splits 1st and 2nd place winnings with Davladze on Tri-State


Juan Guzman, who finished among the top 10 in four Tri-State events in 2012 (3rd once, 4th twice, and 7th once) broke through in 2013 to claim the event title in the March 30 stop on the tour. In the hot seat at the end, Guzman was to face Koka Davladze, who'd won five on the loss side to face him in the finals, but they opted out of a last match. The undefeated Guzman took the event title and split the top two prizes with Davladze. The $1,500-added, A-D handicapped event drew 51 entrants to Gotham City Billiards in Brooklyn, NY.

Six victories, including one against Davladze in a winners' side final eight battle in the fourth round, put Guzman in the hot seat. He'd gotten by Dave Shlemperis, Darren DeFelippis, Marco Costello and Davladze to move among the winners' side final four and a match versus Andrej Kaldan. Alan Chan, in the meantime, squared off against Nicholas Chan. Guzman downed Kaldan 7-5 and faced Alan Chan, who'd sent Nicholas Chan west 6-3. In what would prove to be his last match, Guzman defeated Alan Chan 8-4 to gain the hot seat.

Davladze's trip back to the finals began with a double hill win over Chris Karp and a 7-5 win over Shlemperis, which set him up to face Kaldan. Nicholas Chan drew Eddie Perez, who'd gotten by Mike Aro, double hill, and Kyle Bubet 6-4. Davladze eliminated Kaldan 7-5, and was joined in the quarterfinal match by Chan, who'd downed Perez 6-3.

Davladze and Nicholas Chan fought to double hill before Davladze prevailed to face Alan Chan in the semifinals. Davladze, in his last match, dropped Alan Chan into third place 8-4, before reaching a decision with Guzman to opt out of a final meeting.

Tour representatives thanked the ownership and staff at Gotham City Billiards, as well as sponsors Sterling-Gaming, Ozone Billiards, Poison Cues, Ron Tarr Cues, Kamui Tips, Phil Capelle,  BlueBook Publishing, and Human Kinetics. The next Tri-State stop, scheduled for April 13, is a $1,000-added, A-D handicapped event to be hosted by Castle Billiards in East Rutherford, NJ.