Sometimes the hard work that a player puts in for one event pays dividends in other events. That was the case for Joey Barrera as his preparation for this year’s Saguaro Cup helped him score an undefeated win at the Diamond Pool Tour’s 3rd stop of the season at Freezer’s Ice House on June 9th - 10th.
Barrera’s 604 rating saw him giving up spots to some players that sounded impossible on paper. His first match of the event saw him giving up five games in a race to eight to Brandon Jewell. To make matters worse, Jewell broke and ran the first rack. Barrera is not known for ever giving up though and he bore down to win eight of the next nine racks for a hill-hill victory. “That win definitely gave me motivation for the rest of the event” said Barrera.
The field of 73 players held a fair share of players competing in their first tour stop of the season, and that lead to a number of players enjoying their first tour cashes of the season including David Friedel, Bryan Bach, Scott Vogelsberg, Jose Gonzalez, Dave Mark, Bill Vander Weyst and Guerra.
Dave Mark dropped a match to Tim Daniel late on Saturday night, but bounced back with wins over Brian Long, Josh Murphy and Vander Weyst to earn another shot at Daniel on the one loss side. Mark would settle for 4th after dropping that match to Daniel 9-5. Daniel would then go on eliminate Guerra 9-5 to earn another shot at Barrera in the finals.
Daniel had lost to Barrera 7-3 on the winner’s side and knew the 9-7 race in the finals would be a tough one. Barrera came out quick and took a 2-0 lead, but Daniel came back to win the next five racks. The players traded the next six racks for a 8-5 Daniel lead but Daniel would get no farther as Barrera won the next two racks for the hill-hill win and first place.
Barrera’s #1 fan, Cheryl Timmonen, felt that all of the practice for Saguaro Cup had certainly helped Barrera bring his ‘A-Game’ on this weekend. “He has been putting in an average of 25 hours of practice a week, on top of a full-time job” she said.
Daniel’s second place finish (his second in two events) was more than enough to keep him in first place on the tour points list, and Barrera’s win moved him to second place. Stop 2 winner, AJ Jones, holds third place on the list with Nick De Leon and Tom Dilorenzo filling out the top five spots.
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