Chua downs Atencio twice to win MD State 10-Ball Bar Table Championships
Skip Maloney
Nov. 6, 2018
(in foreground, l to r): Rick Scarlato, Jr., Johann Chua, Jesus Atencio & Loye Bolyard
(in foreground, l to r): Rick Scarlato, Jr., Johann Chua, Jesus Atencio & Loye Bolyard
A little shy of a year ago (Nov. 26, 2017), Johann Chua from the Philippines was in Amagasaki, Japan (about four hours southwest of Tokyo) collecting the 1st place prize in the All Japan Open Championships. The victory capped what proved to be Chua’s best recorded earnings year to date; a year in which during the single elimination phase of the Super Billiards Expo’s Player Championships (April, 2017) he’d defeated, in order, Mika Immonen, Jayson Shaw and Dennis Hatch, before being eliminated in the finals by Shane Van Boening.
 
When Chua arrived on scene at the 2018 Maryland State 10-Ball Bar Table Championships on the weekend of Nov. 3-4, he had yet to chalk up a 2018 victory, at least one that appeared in our records. He wasted little time, marching through the field of 95 entrants, chalking up wins in nearly three out of every four games he played (71%), defeating Jesus Atencio twice and claiming the event title. The annual event, held under the auspices of On The Hill Productions, drew its 95 entrants to Bank Shot Bar & Grill in Laurel, MD.
 
Chua arrived at the winners’ side semifinals, to face Derick Daya, on the heels of four victories and an aggregate game score of 28-8 (77%). Atencio in the meantime, sporting an even better four-match winning percentage (80%; 28-7) squared off against Kevin West. Chua notched his winning percentage up a bit with a 7-2 win over Daya, while Atencio lowered his percentage as he survived a double hill battle against West (the only opponent to chalk up more than two racks against him). Chua claimed the hot seat 7-4 and waited for Atencio to get back from the semifinals.
 
On the loss side, West and Daya ran into a pair of tough customers - Mike Davis, Jr. and Shaun Wilkie, respectively. Davis had recently defeated Curtis Branker and Rick Scarlato, Jr., both 7-3 to draw West. Wilkie had eliminated Joshua McCauley 7-2 and Dylan Spohr 7-3 to face Daya.
 
Wilkie, who’d been sent to the loss side in a double hill, winners’ side quarterfinal by West, did his part to assure an event quarterfinal rematch with a 7-3 win over Daya. West followed suit by downing Davis 7-5. Wilkie and West came within a game of a second double hill fight in those quarterfinals, but Wilkie closed it out, edging ahead to win it 7-5.
 
He was not as fortunate in the semifinals against Atencio that followed. This did go to double hill and this time, it was Atencio advancing for a second shot against Chua with a victory over Wilkie. Chua duplicated his hot seat efforts with a second 7-4 win over Atencio to claim the event title.
 
Tour directors Rick Scarlato, Jr. and Loye Bolyard thanked the ownership and staff at Bank Shot Bar & Grill for their hospitality, as well as sponsors McDermott Cues, Lights Out Billiards Apparel, TAP Pool League (Chesapeake Bay), Billiard Sports Network, Phillippi Custom Cues, Navigator Premium Tips and Chalk, Simonis Cloth, Aramith Balls, and Roy’s Basement.
 
According to Loye Bolyard, On the Hill Productions is in the midst of preparing its 2019 schedule, which will include Championship events in 8-ball, 9-ball and 10-ball. Bolyard expects the schedule to be completed in the next week or two.