Lloyd Crowned Twice at One Tournament

Tara McCracken (2nd), Rachel Abbink (3rd), Heather Lloyd (1st) and Amanda Lampert (4th)

Heather Lloyd from Austin, Texas wrapped up the 2006 Hunter Classics Amateur Women's Tour capturing 1st place at the Hunter Classics Tour season finale and also the Hunter Classics Tour Champion title! Heather explained after the tournament, “I am shocked I won because the field was so strong. I am honored to have such wonderful and talented women around me.”

Jerry Williams, owner of Bogies Billiards in Houston, was an exceptional and supportive host the weekend of Oct 27-28, including adding additional money on Sunday to the second chance tournament. Bogies has 24 eight-foot tables, lots of room, and a wonderful and amazing atmosphere.

Local Houston FOX TV affiliate arrived Sunday to cover the tournament and WPBA President Kim White (and Hunter Tour Champion of 2000) was able to join the ladies and give autographs both Saturday and Sunday. Kim described to FOX the importance of the regional women's tours and explained the passion of the game of 9-ball. In addition, Kim was able to join FOX TV's 30-minute Sunday night live sports broadcast.

The Hunter Classics Tour Champion is crowned at the season finale and at the start of the tournament on Saturday morning Lisa Brannen was on top with a 15-point lead over Leslie Anne Rogers. However, Heather Lloyd was also in contention being only 50 points behind Leslie Anne.

Fifty one ladies came to compete (and have fun) at the season finale. Ladies from as far away as Canada came to this event, but also Arkansas, New Mexico, Colorado and of course Texas. Heather Lloyd's road to the finals began against Tara McCracken and Heather prevailed 7-6. Then Heather defeated Natalie Mans 7-2, Chris White 7-1 and Leslie Anne Rogers 7-3 to set herself up for the winner's side on Sunday. Tara had the long road ahead of her after losing hill-hill to Heather her first match. She started her climb through the one-loss side over TJ Reeves 7-2, Lisa Brannen 7-5, Shayla Neris 7-4 and Cristina De La Garza 7-3 to last until Sunday's rounds.

On Sunday morning, newcomer Yvette Reyes ran into Amanda Lampert and lost 7-3 while Tara defeated Kyu Yi 7-1. Samm Diep from Colorado was derailed by Jennifer Kraber from Austin 7-2 and the other 9th-12th match saw Marissa Hallett over Leslie Anne Rogers 7-6, but the Tour Champion title was still not known at this time.

The winner's side matches on Sunday pitted Rachael Abbink from Canada (2006 Amateur Nationals champion) against Board Member Melinda Hinojosa. Rachael prevailed 7-2. The other winner's side match was between Heather and Veronique Menard also from Canada. Heather won that tough battle 7-6 and sealed the highest points on the tour and earned the title of Hunter Classics Tour Champion of 2006!

Heather's work wasn't over – she still wanted the WPBA Qualifier. The hot seat match was close the whole time, but Heather prevailed 7-5 over Rachel Abbink. On the one-loss side, Marissa and Jennifer placed 7th/8th and earned $105 while Melinda and Veronique placed 5th/6th and earned $160.

Tara then played Amanda Lampert and Tara prevailed 7-1. Amanda earned $275 for her 4th place finish. Tara next played Rachael Abbink and yet another hill-hill match ensued. Tara prevailed yet again 7-6.

The win over Rachael pitted Tara and Heather against each other in the finals. At 6-6, the 4-ball was tucked behind two other balls and very tough to get to. Tara was able to see the 4, but could not make it. Heather was again at the table, staring down what would be either the last game of the weekend, or what could lead to a second match in the double elimination tournament. After a short pause, she finished off the rack for the win! Tara received $570 for 2nd – a hard fought tournament! Rachael earned $410 for her fine efforts and great play for 3rd and Heather, new Hunter Classics Tour Champion, earned $750 and the Player's Choice WPBA Qualifier. Along with Heather's title comes an invite to all WPBA events in 2007! After the win, Heather was smiling but simply shocked she won the tournament, “I was thrilled to be in this situation. I was happy to be there competing in the finals, no matter the outcome. It was a bonus to win the tournament.”

Heather Lloyd, the new Hunter Classics Tour Champion, stopped an impressive 5-year run where Leslie Anne captured the Hunter Classics Tour Champion titles from 2001 to 2005. Heather stated, “Her streak was an incredible accomplishment and I am honored to follow such a fantastic opponent.”

Congratulations to all the ladies! It was a wonderful, fun and exciting season finale (check out almost 400 photos). Thank you to Kim White and Fox TV, Jerry Williams of Bogies Billiards, the HUGE support from our main sponsor Wes Hunter, Royce Bunnell of OB-1 Cue Shaft, Carl Miller (author of Stroke), the tournament directors, and of course, all the ladies who come to the event!! Cuetimes provided free magazines and AZBilliards.com continues to be the Internet sponsor.

The Hunter Classics Tour is not only the largest, longest running regional women's tour, it is also considered by many as the most enjoyable tour to attend. The low entry fees and second chance tournaments, along with free candy and camaraderie, are legendary.

Visit our website for more information: http://www.hunterclassics.com/thetour.html

Main Event, Complete Payouts - $2,000 added
1st Heather Lloyd, $750 + WPBA Qualifier
2nd Tara McCracken $570
3rd Rachael Abbink $410
4th Amanda Lampert $275
5th/6th Melinda Hinojosa and Veronique Menard $160
7th/8th Jennifer Kraber and Marissa Hallett $105
9th-12th Yvette Reyes, Samm Diep, Kyu Yi, and Leslie Anne Rogers $85
13th-16th Monica Anderson, Anne Mayes, Cristina Dela Garza and Courtney Peters $50
17th-24th Terry Petrosino, Jillian Valles, Shayla Neris, Tracie Voelkering, Annie Doyle, Chris White, Natalie Mans, and Belinda Lee $25

Second Chance Tournament, Complete Payouts, $350 added
1st Helen Hayes $190
2nd Julie Stephenson $130
3rd Tina Lehrmann $95
4th Rose McCrory $75
5th/6th Terry Petrosino and Lisa Watson $35
7th/8th Monica Anderson and Debbie Gustafson $20
9th-12th Kathy Knuth, Susan Petty, Tracie Voelkering and Jillian Valles $10