New Champions at Junior Nationals

Austin Murphy

The 2005 BCA Junior Nationals are complete and the pool world has new champions in all four divisions.

In the 18 & Under Boys Division, 17 year old Justin Bergman from Fairview Heights Il took the hot-seat with a win over Kevin Peterson from Tucson Arizona. Peterson then lost to defending champion John Morra from Whitby, Ontario on the left side of the board setting up a rematch between Bergman and Morra for the title. Bergman, who won this event in 2003, had settled for a third place finish last year. He would not be doing any 'settling' this year as he beat Morra for the crown.

In the 18 & Under Girls division, 17 year old Anna Kostanian from Albuquerque NM broke through and earned her first title after back-to-back runner up finishes. Kostanian cruised through the winners side and defeated Allison Hardwick for the hot-seat. Hardwick fell to Juliette Houtz on the one-loss side which set up the final match between Kostanian and Houtz. These two players had faced off for 2nd and 3rd place last year with Kostanian winning, and this year was no different as Kostanian took the win and her first Junior Nationals title.

The 14 & Under Boys division featured a final match up that lived up to expectations. 11 year old Austin Murphy from Folsom California met up with well known sensation Landon Shuffett for the hot-seat with Murphy coming out on top. Shuffett then defeated 13 year old Nick Tafoya from Albuquerque NM to set up the rematch with Murphy in the finals. Murphy was coming off a third place finish last week at the USPPA Pro Am, but his opponent Shuffett has probably logged more time on US TV than half of the UPA top 16. The final match between these two went hill-hill, with Murphy pulling out the win in the end.

The newly formed 14 & Under Girls Division saw Chelsea Hardwick go undefeated with a win over Amber Jankowski for the hot-seat and then a win over 14 year old Noelle Keeley for the title.

Complete Brackets are posted for all four divisions.