Kiamco takes two of three against Durbin to win Midwest 9-Ball Open event

Warren Kiamco, Josh Treadway (sponsor) and Eric Durbin


Warren Kiamco, normally found competing in the Northeast region, happened to be in the Midwest region on the weekend of February 16-17 to pick up a cue in Iowa. While there, a friend of his suggested that it would "only" take about five hours to drive to Olathe, KS to compete on a stop of the Midwest 9-Ball Tour. Kiamco made the trip and headed back to the Northeast with the $2,400 first prize money in his pocket, presumably more than enough to pay for the cue he'd picked up in Iowa. Thanks to Eric Durbin, who won the opening set of a true double elimination against him, Kiamco almost had to settle for the $1,700 second place prize.The $3,250-added Midwest 9-Ball Open event drew 144 entrants to Shooters in Olathe, KS.

Kiamco advanced among the winners' side final eight, joining a host of familiar Midwest players;  Durbin, Joey Gray, Tommy Tokoph, Gabe Owen, and Dustin Gunia among them. Kiamco faced and defeated Gunia 9-6 to move among the winners' side final four, where he faced Owen. Chuck Raulston and Durbin advanced to the other winners' side semifinal with identical 9-7 scores over Rafael Martinez and Owen, respectively.

Kiamco sent Owen west 9-6, and was joined in the hot seat match by Durbin, who'd defeated Raulston 9-4. Kiamco won the first of three against Durbin 9-7 (the score by which all three matches would end) and sat in the hot seat waiting for him to get back.

Owen moved to the loss side and picked up another familiar Midwest player, Shane McMinn, who'd defeated Joey Gray 9-5 and survived a double hill battle against Robert Frost. Raulston picked up Dustin Gunia, who'd gotten by Gordon Vanderveer 9-7 and prevailed double hill over Danny Olson.

McMinn won a second straight double hill battle, this time over Owen and advanced to the quarterfinals. He was joined  by Raulston, who'd dropped Gunia into the tie for fifth place 9-6. 
McMinn chalked up his third double hill win, and what would prove to be his fifth and last, loss-side victory over Raulston in those quarterfinals.

Durbin ended McMinn's streak with a 9-4 victory in the semifinals, and then, handed Kiamco his first loss 9-7 in the opening set of the true double elimination finals. Kiamco came back to win the second set 9-7 and lay claim to the Open event title.