Kiamco double dips Hohmann to win West Coast Swing 9-Ball Challenge

Warren Kiamco, California Billiards Owner Chris Swart and Thorsten Hohmann
It may only be a perception, but the West State Billiards/POV Pool's West Coast Swing seemed to take a bit of a toll on the players, winners included, who moved on to the fourth event of that Swing; the $10,000-added 9-Ball Challenge, which drew 77 entrants to California Billiards in Fremont, CA from July 7-9 (slightly overlapping the One Pocket tournament). Dennis Orcollo, who'd won the 5th Annual Cole Dickson Memorial which launched the Swing, and then, went undefeated to win the One Pocket event, finished in the tie for fifth in the 9-Ball Challenge, while Jayson Shaw, who'd won the 10-Ball Challenge was knocked out in the quarterfinals, both of them by a 'fresh' Corey Deuel. The door was open, and in stepped 'fresh-as-an-elder daisy' Warren Kiamco, who, following a hot seat loss to an also-fresh Thorsten Hohmann, came back to double dip him in the finals and claim the title.
Kiamco's five-match trip to the winners' side semifinal in this event went through (among others) Deuel, and Alex Pagulayan (back-to-back) to end up against Orcollo. Hohmann, in the meantime, whose four-match trip to the winners' side semifinal had included only person with a Fargo rating (Shane Van Boening) faced off against Sina Valizadeh. Kiamco sent Orcollo to the loss side 9-5, as Hohmann was sending Valizadeh over 9-4. Separated by only three points in their respective Fargo ratings, Hohmann (783) and Kiamco (786) locked up in a terrific 9-4 hot seat match that eventually sent Kiamco to the semifinals.
Over on the loss side, Orcollo ran into Deuel, who'd been downed by Kiamco 9-7 on the winners' side, and, in order, had downed Billy Thorpe 8-4, Santos Sambajon 8-6, Van Boening 8-4, and Amar Kang 8-2 to reach him. Valizadeh had the misfortune of running into Shaw, who was in the midst of a seven-match, loss-side winning streak that included back-to-back wins over Sky Woodward (8-5) and Pagulayan (8-6).
Shaw shut Valizadeh out and in the quarterfinals, faced Deuel, who'd eliminated Orcollo 8-6. Deuel then defeated Shaw 8-6, only to run into an obviously determined Kiamco, who defeated him a second time, 8-5 for a second, and, as it turned out, third shot against Hohmann in the hot seat.
The Warrior and the Hitman started out as might have been expected in the opening set of the true double elimination final; trading racks to a 2-2 tie. Kiamco scratched on the break of rack #5 and Hohmann took advantage to move ahead by two. But that, as they say, was all she wrote for that set, as Kiamco went on a nine-game run that forced a second set.
In the second set, a race to 8, there was only one tie; at 1-1. From that point, Kiamco started a four-rack run that saw him sink at least two, and often three balls on his break. In game #7, Kiamco scratched shooting at the 7-ball, which opened the door for a three-rack run (very quickly) that pulled Hohmann within one at 5-4. Hohmann broke dry in rack #10, which gave Kiamco an opening that led to two racks in a row, putting Kiamco on the hill at 7-4. Kiamco ended up in a bad position, shooting at the 2-ball in rack #12 and a couple of back-and-forth safety shots later, Hohmann won his fifth, and final game. About halfway through what proved to be the final rack, Hohmann hooked himself shooting at the 5-ball (literally, behind the 8-ball), and Kiamco was able to pull out the final win and claim the event title.
The West Coast Swing moves on, figuratively, to a marathon. Orocollo and Tony Chohan will take center stage beginning tomorrow (July 11) in a $100,000, head-to-head One Pocket match, labeled as "The Big One." The two will play for four days at California Billiards, in an attempt by one of them to win 40 matches. The production team is expecting one, or possibly both of them to reach 10 wins in each of the four days. The event, as have all of the West Coast Swing events, will be streamed live and free by
The West Coast Swing will wrap up at Hard Times Billiards in Bellflower, CA with a $3,000-added 9-Ball Challenge this weekend (July 15-16).